Just a random post right here, move along! Like most people out there, I consider myself a music enthusiast of some sort. My only formal education when it comes to music is classical piano. My favourite composer is a three-way tie between Bartok, Bach, and Chopin; these were the composers whose music I enjoyed studying and playing the most. Outside of classical music, I love listening to “popular” music. I try not to restrict myself to a specific genre of music. I’m no metal head or hip-hop aficionado. Every now and then, I’ll be jamming to “Straight Outta Compton” and “I Want It That Way” in the same sitting.

But generally, my non-classical music taste gears towards alternative music. Our music preferences are most definitely influenced by our personalities, who we surround ourselves with, and what kind of image we want to project to others. I did go through an “emo” phase for quite some time. When I say “emo” phase, I refer to that phase most teenagers go through where they are angsty, write wannabe poetry, and eliminate any form of colour from their wardrobe. Y’know, cause they’re so jaded and deep? As you can see, I use the term loosely. I hope I didn’t offend any actual emos. After I outgrew the “heart-wrenching, tragic despair” of my adolescence, my music taste became more varied and less “pretentious”. Similar to what happened when I studied classical music, I began to listen to random albums on a whim and explore different genres.

Here are just some of the songs I can’t live without:

Disarm – Smashing Pumpkins
From one of my favourite albums Siamese Dream, Disarm is one of those sad songs that strike a positive chord with you. The string accompaniment is just flawless and striking, and together with Billy Corgan’s raw voice, it makes me feel nostalgic about something different in my life each time I listen to it. If I ever have a funeral, I would want this song to be played.

Dazzle – Siouxsie and the Banshees
I discovered Siouxsie Sioux and her awesome band when I did an online quiz called something along the lines of “Which female rock star are you?” many years ago. The first time I searched her name into Google Images, her boxy eyeshadow scared the crap out of me. Sid Vicious used to be in her band – how awesome is that? Like Disarm, Dazzle invokes different emotions and memories in every listening. It’s an upbeat song that makes me wish I grew up in the 80s.

Heart-Shaped Box – Nirvana
Heart-Shaped Box is a song that many people can’t live without. Every time you hear that eerie descending guitar riff, you are reminded of the brilliance of Kurt Cobain’s gritty songwriting.

Femme Fatale – The Velvet Underground
Femme Fatale is a fun song by The Velvet Underground about Edie Sedgwick, one of Andy Warhol’s superstars. Every time I listen to this song, I secretly wish it was about me. Emilie Simon does a wonderful cover that is worth listening to!

Romeo and Juliet – Dire Straits
I can listen to Romeo and Juliet on infinite repeat. The first time I listened to a Dire Straits song was on a bootleg cassette tape my parents bought when they lived in Italy. My parents would always play that cassette on long car drives and as a result, I always knew which song came before Romeo and Juliet was my favourite. They would always lie to me and say that Mark Knopfler was singing my name. Every time I hear that arpeggio in the intro, I start to believe in fate, true love, and all that fairy-tale nonsense. Most of the songs on that tape was from the album Making Movies, which is an album I highly recommend. The Killers also has a cover of the song which is an interesting take.

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