With only a few weeks left of term, we’ve generously gone and collated a selection of soothing, inspiring, or angst-ridden tracks into our Deadline De-Stress playlist, so as to help you overcome any stage of your coursework-related agonies. Whether you need to cool down after a particularly laborious session, get pumped for that next paragraph, or just vent your frustrations – here we provide the soundtrack.
Nizlopi // Worry
Sometimes, when everything gets too much the best thing to do is take a deep breath. That’s exactly what ‘Worry’ is for. The very first line is preceded by a gentle guitar lick and audible exhale, the kind we all make as we feel a great weight lifted from our shoulders. As well as being filled with lyrics about how we can get so caught up in everything we do that we end up missing beauty, the stripped back timbre of this piece prevents it becoming anything more than a gentle reminder that it will be okay. The line, “It leads to nowhere else if you keep worrying about yourself” comes straight from the soul and provides perspective on even the greatest of coursework worries.
Nicolas Jaar // The Three Sides Of Aubrey And Why She’s All Alone Now
Ambient and art-pop electronic producer Nicolas Jaar has been one of the decade’s most innovate, and overlooked artists, and his series of Nymph EP releases this year include the verbose, but no less excellent for it, ‘The Three Sides Of Aubrey and Why Shes All Alone Now’. It’s a song so skeletal in it’s opening minutes that it’s barely even there – you look at it rather than hear it, such are it’s oily, shimmering vocal tones and gentle synth beats. The drop at it’s end is taut and well earnt, and like nothing you’d ever hear in the club. Thumping oriental drums burst from the darkness, and are consumed again by a wall of sound. Like most Jaar releases, it’s the perfect wind-down song because it’s so completely timeless and meditative you forget what day it is, let alone that looming deadline. (And the drums won’t hurt if it’s all going to shite.)
Survivor // Eye of the Tiger
‘Eye of the Tiger’ is, without doubt, the perfect addition to a De-Stress playlist – start the session with that punchy, staccato riff and you are PUMPED. No man can stop you destroying those 5000 words. Let me tell you something you already know: uni work ain’t all sunshine and rainbows. It’s a very mean and nasty set of deadlines, and I don’t care how tough you are, it will beat you to your knees and keep you there permanently if you let it. You, me, or nobody is gonna hit as hard as that dissetation work. But it ain’t about how hard you smash out those words. It’s about how hard you can get close to giving up and keep moving forward; how much stress you can take and keep moving forward. That’s how winning is done! And ‘Eye of the Tiger’ is the perfect trigger for that success; it will get you pumped, focused and punching those worries away.
Marilyn Manson // This Is The New Shit
When the last-minute panic sets in, my go-to track has to be Marilyn Manson’s ‘This is the New Shit’. It’s got a great groove and an aggressive pace, a really great motivator that picks you up, shakes you up and gets you back on track to success. The pugnacious feel of this track is also excellent for releasing all that pent up stress that an essay is sure to bring.
Kendrick Lamar // Alright
Like most students I always seem to leave all my uni work until the last minute. As a result I end up with way too much to do on top of other important responsibilities, such as catching up on The Walking Dead. When the stress builds up, I need someone to tell me to I’m going to be alright. Whilst Kendrick is clearly talking about much deeper issues than revision and deadlines, I can pretend for a while that he’s speaking to students like me, who have shirked their responsibilities for the first few months. We gon’ be alright.
Bibio // Á tout á l’heure
Allow yourself four minutes from your busy schedule to unwind with your good friend Bibio. He’ll transport you to the spirit of summertime; the dusty-sounding guitar refrain will take you to soft, green fields and the warmth of sunshine. This song seems nostalgic of British summertime – lazing around in your garden with some friends, a BBQ and a crate of cider. Taken from Bibio’s most recent album Silver Wilkinson, he intertwines hand-clapping beats with the soothing sound of a sitar. ‘Á tout á l’heure’ borrows its name from the French expression ‘a moment’, which is apt because that’s all you’ll need for Bibio to whisk you away.
This Is The Kit // Bashed Out
Taking a breather from a heavy coursework session, the delicate melodies, haunting harmonies and affecting lyricism of Kate Stables’ project This Is The Kit are sure to soothe any deadline stresses. Although any track from Bashed Out would do the trick, it’s easy to empathise with the subject of the eponymous title track in such hard times – to feel those worries bashing you about, ploughing you flat, before this de-stress playlist has you returning to the laptop with your sails full of optimism.