(Photo by Nan Palmero)
Songs that give you goosebumps are the best kind. Sometimes they’re so well-written, they make you shiver. Or maybe they just speak to you, relating to your exact situation.
In this post, I’m going to focus on those types of songs that stick in your mind even after you’ve finished listening… the haunting, weird ones. I picked the most eerie songs I could find off my iPod, and compiled them below. Enjoy!
This is a chilling song about death, betrayal and love. It follows the true story of Anne Boleyn, who was Queen of England in the 1500s. Her husband, King Henry VIII, had her put to death after finding out about the hidden, romantic relationship she shared with a peasant. This song reminds me a bit of Bohemian Rhapsody–the chorus is powerful and loud, and the song tells a compelling (and weird) story.
This somber, somewhat gloomy song is told from the perspective of a man (Passenger) who meets a frail, aging man riding to New York from Minnesota by bike. The man admits that he’s suffering with emotional and physical pain–he’s just found out he has lung cancer, and wants to reconnect with his broken family he’s lost touch with before he passes away. I love this song. It reminds you never to take your life for granted.
You may have heard this song featured in season 5 of Sons of Anarchy. According to Entertainment Weekly, “‘The Lost Boy’ is a eulogy for a fallen character, but the song was actually inspired by Dave Eggers’ novel What Is The What, about a group of Sudanese refugees. ‘If you listen to the lyrics, it’s not like you’d know that it was about a Sudanese refugee,’ Greg Holden tells EW. ‘I know what it’s about, but I’m really glad people are able to take their own meanings from it. I like it when songs have more meanings than just the one that was intended, so I’m glad that people were able to relate to it through Sons of Anarchy.'”
I met Greg Holden a few weeks ago, and heard him perform a few of his songs off his debut album. Although he didn’t perform this one, most of his songs were similar–each held a deeper meaning, and shed light on common social, as well as emotional issues.
This song is pretty hypnotizing from the very beginning, and Gotye wrote it about something you might not expect–a dog. It’s based off a true story about his friend who was putting down his 21-year-old dog Bronte. Gotye explained in an interview with Artist Direct: “When you love and care for an animal, you don’t want it to suffer too much. You also respect nature and the natural cause of things. They really struggled with the eventual decision of deciding they had to let go of the dog and put it down. I thought they did it in a very loving way. From what I could tell, it was very instructive and inclusive for their daughters. They did it as a family. I wrote that song like I was vicariously experiencing it. That’s what I’m proud of. In its simplicity, I felt like it captured my feelings of that experience even if it was at a distance. You don’t have to necessarily interpret it as a relationship between people and animals.”
The 1975 have never performed this song live, possibly because of how controversial it is. Matty Healy, the lead singer, has said it’s their band manager’s favorite song, and that he is always is encouraging the band to perform it live. Matty says this song is really personal, and one of his favorites they’ve written–it represents the fact that he often wishes he was religious so that he had something to believe in, but is however, an atheist. The lyrics in this song are incredibly well-written, with such great imagery. One of my favorites.