Heartbreak: we’ve all experienced it, and countless have penned tunes in tribute to it. But when it comes to days loathed by singles like Valentine’s Day, how relatable can a star like ‘Yoncé be when it comes to the everyday ache that plagues lonely hearts like ours? Surely a fellow hopeless romantic closer to home will have a better understanding.
Capturing the pains of being cheated, the triumphs of going it alone, and the longing for a love you know is toxic, here we present 10 songs by Singaporean artists that understand your struggle, and will hopefully provide a little solace amid the sickly Valentine’s Day sweetness. You’ll probably still be lonely, but at least you won’t feel so alone in it.
Ffion – “Rumours”
“Your rumours, they call / When you’re in constant denial / Your lies, they fall / The words that I won’t live for”
What’s worse than finding out that your lover is doing you dirty? Hearing it secondhand and having to convince yourself that the rumours aren’t true. Ffion feels you, and her aptly titled slowjam captures the bittersweet moment when karma catches up.
Sam Rui – “Boys”
“Say goodbye to this new guy / You’re deserving so much better, don’t you know?”
If Sam Rui’s breakout single “Better” is an account of self-discovery and confidence after being toyed with, “Boys” is a manifesto to listeners everywhere who’ve come out better after being dealt a bad hand from Cupid, while affirming a woman’s worth. Fuckboys, you’ve been put on notice.
Of Methodist – “Dead to Me”
“Oh, what a shame you’re on your knees for me / Cuz in the morning you’ll be dead to me”
Payback’s a bitch, and Of Methodist is lapping up the turning of the tables in this scathing account of a lover scorned. Channelling the confusion of being played for a fool, while fighting the temptation of becoming something you despise out of emotional inadequacy, the song is for those who want to relish an upsized serving of revenge.
Jasmine Sokko – “Porcupine”
“I didn’t know that the spark in your eyes / Are flashing signs of the warning kind”
Ever felt like each time you’ve let your guard down, you’ve been burnt? We don’t blame you for not trusting so easily, and neither does Jasmine Sokko. Named after the ‘porcupine dilemma’, this electronic banger is for those who afraid of letting lovers get too close.
M1LDL1FE – “How You Forget”
“It’s funny how, it’s funny how you forget / The memories you swore never to let go”
Forgetting about former partners is just a part of the silly little game we call love. But how do you reconcile leaving behind memories that you promised would stay with you forever? Are you breaking a promise to not only another, but to yourself, too? M1LDL1FE fleshes out this internal battle beautifully.
Heir of Hounds – “Old Sport”
“But you’re whispering in my ear / Words you know that I’ve been waiting years for / These promises, well they’re empty inside”
Having to come to terms with the realisation that somebody isn’t good for you can be as hard as fighting the urge to be with them, and Heir of Hounds translate this conflicting push and pull perfectly. Helplessly in love and feeling powerless to promises that you know won’t come to fruition, sometimes it’s better to trust yourself and spend the night alone.
Forests – “Tamago”
“I fell in love once or twice / I don’t want to fall in love with anyone anymore”
It’s that ol’ nutshell of leaning on (and in Forests’ case, taking influence from) those Midwestern emo classics, but damning them to heck at the same time for deepening the depressive spiral. Like the merger of aggression, sadness and joy in Forests’ composition, the romance can be a love-hate affair.
Sobs – “Catflap”
“Shakin’ off all the bad thoughts that come with you / How did the echoes in my head get so out of tune?”
Skins fans will get the reference, but even if you don’t, Sobs’ dreamy number encapsulates the disappointment of being let down one too many times. Whether it’s a fear of commitment, inability to be honest, or failing to meet the smallest expectations, we’ve all experienced that struggle of knowing when, or if, to let go.
Handsome Girl – “For Once”
“Let me be now / For once, I am willing to be lonely”
There’s nothing quite as crushing as not being able to touch the skin of a loved one whom no longer walks the earth. Like the changing winds and waves that Handsome Girl alludes to, being overwhelmed by memories of the departed is often followed by the calm of being comfortable on your lonesome, before entering the next chapter of your life.
The Caulfield Cult – “I Don’t Want You Anymore”
“So, to this sadness and frustration / This is where I will leave you”
As much as it hurts to be left behind, it can hurt just as much to be the one letting go. Rising above something you’ve been avoiding and making a hard decision is no walk in the park (or the cemetery, at which The Caulfield Cult sets the scene), and the combination of morose melodies and pained confession here sums it all up.