Playlist of the Week 1/21: Jacob Collier, Songs from Shang-Chi, The Taxpayers, and More!

Playlist of the Week Interview Recordings

Keeping a pulse on what campus is listening to, The Phillipian interviewed seven students for their top song recommendations this week. Whether it be Bruno Mars, Mozart, or childhood favorites, songs filtered through headphones, blasted through dorm rooms, and hyped students up on game days. Scan the Spotify code below to give it a listen!


Somin Virmani ’22: “Locked Out of Heaven” by Bruno Mars 

“I think as a pop song the chorus is really pleasing, whatever chords are happening, there’s a moving baseline that’s very satisfying. It’s been out for a long time, and I cycle through listening to a lot of different genres of music, and it’s what’s come up recently.”


Fae Ross ’24: “I Love You Like an Alcoholic” by The Taxpayers

“This song is a duet between two lovers who can’t escape each other. It’s rough and out of tune, but somehow you wouldn’t have it any other way. The frantic refrain of “one last kiss” is sung through clenched teeth, the usually-romantic phrase practically spat in contempt…There’s something so compelling about this simultaneous adoration and disgust, this overwhelming need tainted by self-hatred for giving in. By the time you get to the last chorus, there’s a sense of hopelessness and doom. The lovers keep insisting it’ll be the last kiss, but it never will. They’re trapped with each other forever…If the apocalypse were coming, I’d play this song. Imagine not being able to let go of the lover you hate as the world burns around you. It lends a whole new meaning to [the lyric] “one last kiss.””


Adaora Mbanefo ’24: “Cupid’s Chokehold” by Gym Class Heroes and “If we have each other” by Alec Benjamin

“I feel like I’m the main character and I feel like every song should make you feel that way…I [also] love ‘Cupid’s Chokehold’ by Gym Class Heroes, it just gets me pumped. I definitely think that it’s the lyrics [that gets me pumped up] because it’s a song about somebody loving someone so much with their whole world and going into the new year, we all need that….[I also like] “If we have each other” by Alec Benjamin. It’s a sad song that goes to different forms of love and how it affects relationships and it really has me thinking about how lucky I am to have the people I have and be in the situation I’m in.”


Max Berkenblit ’24

“I listen to a lot of Mozart, his string quartets have been really good to study because there’s not any percussion or anything that’s too loud or that’s distracting. Some of them are a bit louder than others, but I found that a lot of them are good for getting into the headspace to do work, and that’s generally the only time I listen to music. Sometimes there are some really epic feelings, especially in major keys, when there’s that dramatic swell, and I’ll be typing, and it’s like oh my gosh I feel like a hero in a story, I’m conquering this story, and it’s super nice, even though I’m just doing a Quizlet. But it’s still pretty cool because of motivation, a good feeling.” 


Kennedy Leach ’25: “Thrift Shop” by Macklemore and “Circular Sunset” from Asphalt 9

“That’s gonna be a tie-in between ‘Thrift Shop’ by Mackelmore and ‘Circular Sunset’ by Asphalt 9. We all know ‘Thrift Shop’ by Macklemore, from what, 2010’s now? And then there’s ‘Circular sunset’ from Asphalt 8, a song in my favorite video game. I’m really attracted to the bass in the song, I’m not a big wordsy-song person, but I like the beat. It’s very energizing and motivating in a way, kind of like a game day playlist. The beats energize me; it’s fun to have something energize you each day.”


Sammie Shim ’23: “In Case You Didn’t Know” by Brett Young

“One of my favorite songs is “In Case You Didn’t Know” by Brett Young. It’s a…song about this guy telling someone how much he loves them. This is a song that I grew up with; it’s one of my mom’s favorite songs, so she used to play it in the car a lot going to school, coming back from school, going to activities… The tune is very slow and sweet…Whenever I listen to it, it reminds me of spending a lot of time with her..[and] how much I care about the people in my life.” 


Kate Horton ’22: “Super Bloom” by MisterWives

“I love the song Super Bloom by MisterWives. It’s a very upbeat song, some amazing saxophone, some amazing vocals. Great song to listen to while you’re in the car, while you’re walking, great vibes all around. [Listening to the song] always makes me smile… I love good musicianship, as a musician myself, and so to hear instruments go off, like the piano, saxophone, other brass instruments, always just puts a smile on my face. It makes me want to dance along, sing along. I’m also a lover of harmonies and so some tight harmonies always makes my heart swell.” 


Sebastian Altomare ’23: “With the Love in My Heart” by Jacob Collier 

“First of all, the rhythm and percussion in this song makes me want to get up and dance. The song starts out with this beautiful cascading, ethereal kind of sound that makes you feel warm inside. It’s like a piano with a harp and a bunch of synths. Collier continues with a locked in 7/4 time signature, which sets the theme for the rest of the song. With some positive vibes for the start of this year, the song talks about this idea of freedom and finding ourselves in moments of love.”


Nick Liu ’23: “Fire in the Sky” by Anderson .Paak

I really like “Fire in the Sky” by Anderson .Paak from the 88Rising-produced Shang-Chi soundtrack The song’s groove is infectious and bursting with feel-good vibes–just 100%, unbridled, relentless joy. “Fire in the Sky” is a love song: of people becoming infatuated with each other, themselves, and the world around them. It’s an infatuation with culture and with color. It’s immigrant parents meeting in an unfamiliar country, sunset drives through strawberry fields, and beautiful strangers. “Fire in the Sky” has always been about hope to me, which, as we all know, we could use some more of.