I, for one, am a strong proponent of music as a mood enhancer. I think that no matter what the situation, the type of music you are listening too can heighten the experience, provided that it is contextually appropriate. I’ve put together a list of songs that will accurately describe the situation and emotion you are in.
Deftones – Knife Party
This song is best listened to in between the third and fourth day of your ongoing heroin binge. It will be difficult to distinguish the ephemeral, screaming background vocals from your own shattered moaning. However, it would be fun to attempt a two-part harmony!
Talking Heads – Once in A Lifetime
This song is best listened to when feeling a sense of overwhelming, but unrealized joy. It expresses incredulity in the face of happiness. It asks the question that we all ask, “How did I get here?” and then answers it with a “Shut up and accept it!” Best situations to listen are at the end of a fun marriage reception, birth of a son/daughter, after a good long hug from your dad, receiving an extremely thoughtful present from a sibling or friend, or while watching any type of show where soldiers return home from war to surprise their families.
Brand New – Limousine
This song is best listened to when you haven’t cried in a decade or more. I’m talking about the deep down cry where you feel like you got an ab workout afterwards. The music and lyrics in this song are desolate and chilling to begin with. If the line “In the choir/ I saw a sad Messiah./ He was bored and tired of my laments./ He said, ‘I died for you one time, but never again’” doesn’t haunt you to your very core, then reading about the story that inspired the song will. I’ll include the link here to the backstory with a serious warning: the subject of the song is possibly the most gut-wrenchingly, horrifying tale in recent history. No bull. If you would like to remain happy for the rest of the day, don’t click here
Again, this song should be used like a sadness laxative, sparingly and within running distance of a bathroom.
Miley Cyrus – Party in the USA
This song is best used when you wish to fully embrace your natural human tendency to be a raving hypocrite. It is the exact type of song you always complain about on the radio. It uses Autotune, the lyrics are moronic, the person singing the lyrics is a vapid, corporate succubus whose father may or may not have signed a legitimate deal with the devil to become famous. Yet here you are, in your Toyota Camry, bouncing your head and singing every lyric at the tops of your lungs. You hate yourself for loving it, but love it you do.
The Flaming Lips – Worm Mountain
In the unlikely event that you go to Hell, this is the music that would be playing in the coal elevator as you descend wildly and uncontrollably into the Shadow Realm. You’ll step off the elevator, the fuzzy bass line still throbbing over the PA system, and shake hands with the devil. He’ll say, “Are you ready for a lifetime of torture?”
You’ll say, “Bring it.”