Introducing WLUW’s Social Distancing Playlist

by WLUW Executive Staff

As everyone is likely well-aware, we are living in strange and stressful times. Keeping ourselves busy and our minds on the positive, if that’s a possibility, is a task that many people are trying to figure out. So are we. In an effort to spread at least a little bit of entertainment or positivity, WLUW’s executive staff has teamed up to make a playlist of music we find ourselves turning to during this time which we would like to share with anyone who is interested in hearing a new song or two.

The playlist we thus created is set to update Fridays at noon every week. Its first 8 songs mean a lot to us, and we wanted to share some of our reasons for choosing them. If any of these songs or albums sound interesting to you, give our playlist a look and be sure to check back every week for more songs added by our staff.

Girlpool, What Chaos is Imaginary (song: “What Chaos is Imaginary”)

I’ve been listening to this track a lot off of this record. It calms me down, makes me forget about my stresses, and is overall an ethereal track that makes me float.

– Elise McGannon

Purr, Like New (song: “Boys”)

Purr marks the second project from childhood friends and born-and-raised New Yorkers Eliza Callahan and Jack Staffen. The songwriting duo formed Purr in 2017 as college seniors, later going on to meet Jonathan Rado who would produce their debut album, Like New. Taking cues from a lineage of dual-lead-vocalist bands from the late 60s and 70s, their voices blend in harmony to sound like one. Positive and blissful, this is a great springtime record, generally optimistic for staying indoors during this global pandemic. It just reminds you of happier days. “Boy” is my favorite track off the album because of the modern twangy production and poetic lyrics that seem to loop over and over throughout the entirety of the 2 minute song.

– Allison Lapinski

Big Thief, Masterpiece (song: “Velvet Ring”)

It’s easy to get lost in the intricacies of Masterpiece as Big Thief’s melodies ebb and flow over the album’s 12 songs. Ranging in sound from light acoustic laments to heavy electric wails, Big Thief creates a complex world within their debut release that sweeps me off my feet every time I listen to it. Intricate picking and deep guitar riffs incorporated by the musicians have left songs like “Velvet Ring” and “Paul” stuck in my head a lot recently, but I play the entire album pretty often. I’ve spent many an afternoon singing along to this album loudly (and badly) in my living room. If you’re listening to Masterpiece for the first time, sit back and prepare yourself for poetic lyrics and breathlessly raw instrumentals, preferably while trying to get out of bed in the morning or cleaning your home on a sunny afternoon.

– Morgan Ciocca

Esperanza Spalding, Esperanza (song: “Precious”)

I dig this song because it makes me feel.

– Mat Shiley

The Garden, Kiss My Super Bowl Ring (song: “A Fool’s Expedition”)

The Garden’s latest album, Kiss My Super Bowl Ring, dropped right in time for quarantine, thank god. Every track has been on constant rotation for me, but “A Fool’s Expedition” specifically is a song I can’t stop listening to.

– Zoe Drellishak

Grouper, Ruins (song: “Holding”)

I’ve found myself listening to Ruins a lot right now because I find it really calming and grounding. Liz Harris recorded most of this album in a tiny village in a nature preserve, and the resulting recordings are very raw; you can hear the frogs croaking and the soft patter of rain. You can feel that Harris is decompressing, treating her songs as a living diary, and the empty spaces in the sparse arrangements allow listeners to do the same. Put on the album, open the windows, let the breeze in, and let your thoughts out.

– Jamie McMillin

Greet Death, New Hell (You’re Gonna Hate What You’ve Done)

This song and album have been on constant repeat for me since its release back in November of 2019. A slow burner that builds the intensity as the 8 minute track progresses. “Well the days are getting shorter / All your friends stopped coming over / And you’re losing your composure / You should sleep less, we should talk more” is a MOOD for life in quarantine.

– Paul Quinn

Daft Punk, Discovery (song: “Digital Love”)

I have been listening to “Digital Love” by Daft Punk lately! Now that 99% of what I’m doing is dancing alone around my apartment, everything I’m listening to is just my soundtrack for that. This song makes me feel like I’m at an outer space dance party.

– Kellyn Kory

Reel Big Fish, Life Sucks…Let’s Dance! (song: “Life Sucks…Let’s Dance!”)

In these times of crisis it’s important to remember that it is always a good idea to dance a bit, sing a bit and enjoy life for a bit.

– Luis Mejía Ahrens

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