Pumpkin spice playlist: Must-listens for Fall Term


Fall is here: the season of letting go and starting over. While it may seem that we have been at school forever, we remain in a time of transition, reflected both in nature and in the mind. The trees are turning bronze and shedding their leaves while we, too, are forced to leave the past behind and focus on the present. For those of you who are new to Groton, it may seem like a crazy whirlwind or an exciting start to a new phase of your life. And, for those returning, fall is always a chance for renewal. The following songs reflect the long and eventful journey ahead.

Open Season – High Highs
Guaranteed to make you drift into a satisfying sleep, “Open Season” melds the soothing strums of a guitar with a slow and steady drumbeat and the ethereal voices of a male duo from Australia. This is possibly the most “vibey” song I’ve ever listened to, and it works best in combination with a cozy blanket and mug of steeped tea. Sometimes we might feel like we’re drifting, and “Open Season” makes you truly feel like a cloud in the air.

Ms – alt-J
One of alt-J’s more overlooked songs, “Ms”’s instrumentals incorporate subtle layers of various sounds and pitches to generate a sweet, ripple-like sound. At first listen, you might not appreciate its unconventional vocals, but give it a chance and you’ll be glad you did. Listen to “Ms” on a rainy bus ride to an away game while admiring the fall foliage, or in the library while trying to focus and slow down at the end of the day.

New Slang – The Shins
“New Slang” is the epitome of The Shins’ selection of feel-good music. You may know the New Mexico-based indie rock band from “Simple Song”, which was featured in How I Met Your Mother’s Season 8 finale. The song creates a serene atmosphere by means of the sweet sounds of an acoustic guitar as well as soft and effortless vocals.

All We Ever Knew – The Head and the Heart
Released last June, “All We Ever Knew” is a cheerful and thoughtful song that will pick you up when you’re feeling down. The album, “Signs of Light”, contains a host of other songs along the same inspiring lines. The Head and the Heart, formed in Seattle, combine piano, drums, and guitar into a catchy tune that you won’t get sick of.

Just Breathe – Pearl Jam
It is a general consensus that Eddie Vedder’s unrivaled powerful and deep vocals are the perfect remedy for a bad day. This 2009 song expresses feelings of emptiness and angst that resonate in this day and age and reminds us to take a deep breath. Other quality songs by the classic grunge band include “Black” and “Last Kiss”. “I listen to Pearl Jam on rainy days to make me feel peaceful,” explains Aly Manjee ’18.

This Must Be the Place – Iron & Wine
“This Must Be the Place” evokes a warm and fuzzy feeling inside all. Iron & Wine transformed the song, originally performed by rock band Talking Heads, from a funky and minimalistic tune to a tender and nostalgic one. The song is prominent in the musical community; it was also redone by The Lumineers, who slowed it down and stripped the melody raw. If you ever get homesick, be sure to give it a listen. “Home is where I want to be // But I guess I’m already there” serves as a reminder that home can be wherever you want to be and whatever you make it.

two-door-cinema-clubChanging of the Seasons – Two Door Cinema Club
This song is all about release. Two Door Cinema Club emphasizes the inevitability of impermanence with Alex Trimble’s distinctive voice. The song features an upbeat drumbeat to emphasize continuity and progress, and, while the lyrics may be direct, the positive melody will certainly make you excited for the future.

the-vaccinesWetsuit – The Vaccines
Justin Young’s unparalleled, deep voice is both calming and powerful in this song about taking the plunge. While most of The Vaccines’ songs are either fervently upbeat or somberly slow, Wetsuit fuses steadiness with vigor in a tune propelled by drums and the electric guitar. This is a great song for a walk or run. The Vaccines encourage you to buy in to your emotions and go with your gut. “It’s hazy like waking up in the summer – it’s iconic,” says Langa Chinyoka ’17.

I Am a Rock – Simon & Garfunkel
The unforgettable, soothing vocals of Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel create a harmonious and uplifting melody in “I Am a Rock.” The fifty-year-old song’s honest lyrics promote reflection and self-protection from emotional troubles – “Bridge over Troubled Water” does the same. This is a classic tune, perfect for singing in the shower.

Long Train Runnin’ – The Doobie Brothers
This upbeat and groovy fan favorite by the celebrated 70s rock band is sure to get you through this school year. The guitar riffs are simple yet captivating and the drumbeat lively, fitting for a song all about moving forward. “I am not for a second Doobie-ous about the quality of their music,” says Chris Ye ’17.