PLAYLIST: The Melancholy of Youth by Aidan Alexander

It’s hard enough being young, without piling onto that a year like the one we just had. For 20-year-old Aidan Alexander’s new single, The End of the World (his first since his debut back in 2018), and a new EP releasing later this year, the singer-songwriter tapped into his own personal experiences with embracing and letting go of loneliness and the need we all have for other humans. In other words, concepts which most of his young following (and everyone else at this point) will relate to all too well.  

From the Gorillaz to the Cranberries and Carla Bruni’s beloved French ballad, he gives us the perfect playlist to feel all of the feels—the good, the sad, and the worthy of an ugly-cry.

On Melancholy Hill – Gorillaz

This is one of my favorite songs of all time. I think the lyrics are so nostalgic and bittersweet. The line that always stands out to me every listen is, “You can’t get what you want, but you can get me.”

Sad Dream – Sky Ferreira

Sky is one of my favorite artists. This song showcases how underrated of a songwriter she is. The bass in this song is also so beautiful and haunting.

House on a Hill – The Pretty Reckless

This song stands out to me because of the lyrics. There’s this obsession people have with being the best and most popular. This is all about her being fine with fading into oblivion, which was very refreshing to hear.

Kids – MGMT

I don’t know if there is a song that embodies being young in such an anthemic way like this one does. It really brings back the best memories. I can’t listen to this without vibing.

Such Great Heights – The Postal Service

I love this song as well as the origin of the band and their name. The production is so happy and uplifting, but the lyrics and vocal tone is quite the opposite. I enjoy that dichotomy.

Ribs – Lorde

This has been one of my favorites since middle school. The structure is so unusual and different, and she delivers it in such a self-assured way. It’s such a great song about growing up and how scarring it can be.

Quelqu’un m’a dit – Carla Bruni

This song is so beautiful—from her vocal delivery to the lyrics. If you have some time, I would recommend looking up the translation.

Feels Like We Only Go Backwards – Tame Impala

You can’t go wrong with Tame Impala, but this is one of my favorites. The feel of the song is so nostalgic and the production sounds like it’s from another time.

Playgirl – Ladytron

This song is an example to me of how a song can encapsulate a feeling so vividly. I heard a story about my friend’s older sister sneaking into this show in London in 99’, and every time I listen I picture that experience.

Linger – The Cranberries

I wish I wrote this. It’s so beautiful and vulnerable. It’s such a soft but powerful song.