• Skyler Neal

Fresh Spring Bops to Bop Your Way to the Top

Image courtesy of Dmitry Bayer

Is it just me or has this quarter been the longest quarter of your entire school year thus far? I'm actually positive time has actually slowed down and the earth itself is rotating at a slower rate than before. Ok so, that's not true but I can honestly say that every winter I feel like this no matter what's going on in my life. That's not to say winter is the big bad wolf and we're all the little piggies running around in our puffer coats and cursing under our breaths. There's something to be said about winter. It begins with the magic of the holiday season and then becomes a point of re-birth and new beginnings as soon as the new year rolls around but sometimes, it can feel just empty with no explanation whatsoever. I happen to think that this down period of sorts is necessary for a healthy mindset all year round. We set our intentions in the new year and are then faced with the urge to just cuddle up in bed with some soup and watch Netflix for hours upon hours instead of gearing up to go outside in the frigid weather. That's okay sometimes, take a breath because we often forget to. Taking the time to reflect is hard, I know, but if we are going to make changes in our lives first, we need to learn about ourselves. Winter is a time to do just that. So, before you listen to this playlist, think about the season of snow in a way you haven't before. Ask yourself how you've grown or maybe you haven't grown which is also fine. Time stands still in the winter because the universe is taking a nap, so maybe instead of being too hard on yourself for staying in on those cold nights instead of working out appreciate your decision to let your body rest. Instead of worrying if your mental health is acceptable to you think about the fact that without hardship there would be no growth in your life. Keeping in mind those lessons will help us adjust to the spring weather ahead because lord knows I need my vitamin d. Spring is where we plant our goals and dreams and let them grow through the warm weather and rejoice in the rain. This season is as good as any to get going and make stuff happen. The slow lullaby that was once winter is over and now, we are in need of some solid BOPS to bounce our way into the arms of Spring. The playlist itself consists of 20 songs which I will link below but first, here are some honorable mentions.

Click here to listen to SpringBOPS

1. Maybe You're the Reason by The Japanese House

The Japanese House is a band curated by London based singer Amber Bain who mixes a euphoric dream pop into something so refreshing I can't stop listening to her new album Good at Falling. While I include a couple of songs off this album in the playlist Spring BOPS my favorite is definitely Maybe You're the Reason. There's something about it that makes me feel light inside with a hint of Spring but all the while includes the dark elements of growing through something painful. The lyrics "I keep looking for something, even though there's nothing" really spoke to me as a conclusion to how I've felt this past winter. It's upbeat elements, however, usher in a much-needed optimism that's required in order to fully embrace the Spring season.

Image courtesy of New Noise Magazine

2. Harmony Hall by Vampire Weekend

The beginning melody of this song completely struck a chord with me in that it's the melody of optimism and sunshine. Not to mention it's by Vampire Weekend, a band that has had a major impact on the indie genre as a whole. Despite its upbeat melody, Harmony Hall addresses darkness in the current climate of the U.S. with the lyrics "Anybody with a holy mind can never forgive the sight of wicked snakes inside a place you thought was dignified" and "I don't want to live like this, but I don't want to die." Those last lyrics actually sound hopeful to me, like yes life is hard but don't give up, there are still beautiful things to be experienced.

Image courtesy of Variance Magazine

3. Burning by Maggie Rogers

Maggie has brought us hits like "Alaska" and "Dog years" on the indie charts and now, she's released a full album of empowering songs that encapsulate the image of a flower breaking through the snow of winter and opening its arms to the sunshine. This song "Burning" especially describes Maggie's own awakening to love and life. That concept is beautiful in itself but it's the upbeat melody and electric chords and brings vibrancy to its message.

Image courtesy of Tidal

4. Knock Me Off My Feet by SOAK

SOAK is a band I'm unfamiliar with but this song has certainly put them on the map of my favorite music. The lyrics "You can knock me off my feet but I won't stop now, you can take a seat" clarify that it's a fighting song to anybody who's been through a rough winter. It's the anthem for anyone who struggles with mental health issues.

Image courtesy of Under the Radar Magazine

5. Juice by Lizzo

I had to put this in there because Lizzo is the absolute sass queen. "Juice" is a great song to listen to while walking to classes or before a big presentation. Throwing shade, sass, and confidence are all a part of the package when it comes to this song, surely you'll be bopping to the top - Sharpay.

Image courtesy of TRBIMG

6. GIRL by Maren Morris

I'm not a huge fan of mainstream country but I really like Maren Morris because she doesn't apologize for who she is or what she believes in especially growing up in the conservative enclave of Dallas, Texas. The song starts with the powerful strumming of an electric guitar which represents the core of her music: strength and individuality. My favorite lyrics are "Girl won't you stop your crying, I know that you're trying" because I think we could all use a little reassurance that our hard work and pain is important to recognize in that it makes us stronger.

Image courtesy of Sounds Like Nashville

Click here to listen to SpringBOPS