Breaking Up Is Hard To Do: A Playlist

Impose Automaton

Valentine's Day has finally arrived, and while all of you are out prancing around with loved ones, shouting proposals and reading sonnets, Impose is grimmer than ever. To honor the tradition of severing ties with people we once loved, we asked some of our favorite now-broken up bands to tell us what their choices for best breakup songs are. After all, they know best.

breakup playlist

Cassie Ramone of Vivian Girls/The Babies

The Carpenters, “Another Song”: I really like the metaphors in this song comparing a breakup to the sun rising at dawn. Dawn is a very harsh time even though it's supposed to be beautiful. I also like how the intro is almost overly prissy and by the end of the song they're in a weird, kind of heavy psychedelic jam.

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Moshe Rozenberg of DD/MM/YYYY

The Mothers of Invention, “How Could I Be Such A Fool?”

John Edelstein of Fiasco/Bluffing

Eskemo, “Riding”: It's able to be concise without sacrificing any emotional power or getting too wordy. It's deceptively challenging to write a song so simple yet effective, in terms of both music and lyrics. Runners up would be “Ex-Factor” by Lauryn Hill or “You're Breakin' My Heart” by Harry Nilsson.

Bruce Willen of Double Dagger

Sebadoh, “…Burned (Everybody's Been Burned)”: Sebadoh has so many great break up songs (Sister, Soul and Fire, Vampire) that I had trouble picking just one. But this cover of a Byrds song is perfect for soaking in one's own misery.

Doug Tuttle of MMOSS

The Byrds' “Time Between” into “Everybody's Been Burned”: The most devastating pair of songs I've ever heard back to back on a record. First “Time Between”, a Chris Hillman tune about a failing long distance relationship, then “Everybody's Been Burned”, a Croz song about wanting to give up on love all together. Such sad songs, the rest of the record had to be about aliens and what it's like being a rock star.

RPR of Keep Shelly In Athens

Soft Cell, “Say Hello, Wave Goodbye”: “…because it is such an honest and at the same time gentle way to say goodbye Just smile and say hello, Say hello then wave goodbye. Every time I listen to it, I want to break up for the sake of this wonderful song.”

Jason Hendardy of Permanent Collection

The Zounds, “True Love”: This song seemed like a good candidate for the opener for a favorite break up songs list because I mean “true love, what's it really all about”? Plus it's a good up beat first song.

Karen Dalton, “Reason to Believe”: Close it all out with a stripped down song. This song can speak for itself.

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