The Cure - ‘Disintegration’
Robert Smith and company are known for their lengthy doom and gloom centric songs, but “Disintegration” may be the cherry on top of their very gothic cake. The title track off of their 1989 masterpiece of the same name, “Disintegration,” clocks in just under eight and a half minutes and is filled with dark imagery throughout. Over an instrumental that evokes the moment a full moon emerges from the clouds on a stormy night, Smith laments about a relationship that is falling apart in rapid fashion. Using symbolism typically saved for failing relationships, it is actually about Smith’s ongoing battles with drugs and the acknowledgment that it may end his life at any point.
Bonus Points: The entirety of the “Disintegration” album, and a majority of the projects The Cure released in the ‘80s.
Jorja Smith - ‘Wandering Romance’
Jorja Smith released her debut studio album “Lost & Found” in 2018 to a much smaller fanfare than one would’ve believed for an artist who was featured on Drake’s “More Life” project a mere two years earlier. That doesn’t mean “Lost & Found” is a bad record though. In fact, it’s one of the more underrated albums of that year. While many people got into Jorja because of “Blue Lights,” one of the more interesting songs from the album is “Wandering Romance.” Detailing an unstable relationship, the track features some of the most interesting and well polished production Jorja has ever sung over.
Bonus Points: “Lost & Found” is her only full-length LP as of this writing, and it’s damn enjoyable.
Pendulum - ‘Propane Nightmares’
What starts off as an upbeat trumpet ends up as one of the best dubstep-style songs you’ll ever hear. Technically considered part of the drum and bass genre, Pendulum’s 2008 single “Propane Nightmares” is a banger among bangers and one of the best songs you could ever listen to to get hyped up for an event or the gym.
Bonus Point: If you’re looking for dubstep influenced music that isn’t quite dubstep, check out Danny Brown’s “Smokin’ & Drinkin.”
Matchbox Twenty - ‘How Far We’ve Come’
Speaking of great songs for the gym, check out this rager right here! If you’ve only listened to Matchbox Twenty’s radio hits that are on the slower side, the song will catch you off-guard. A song about the end of the world and reminiscing, it may just be the most upbeat, and best, song the unit ever put out together.
Bonus Points: Chances are if you’ve heard all of the Matchbox Twenty songs that get constant airplay on radio stations, you understand what Matchbox Twenty is all about. Songs like “Unwell,” “If You’re Gone” or “3 A.M.” should get you your fill of the band.
Lonnie Liston Smith - ‘A Garden of Peace’
Most famously used as the guiding sample for JAY-Z’s “Dead Presidents II,” Lonnie Liston Smith’s “A Garden of Peace” sounds just as heavenly without streets raps and drums laced all over it. One of the smoothest compositions to ever grace a recording microphone, Lonnie Liston Smith’s piano only ballad is worth going out of your way to seek out.
Bonus Points: While not an original composition necessarily, if you’re looking for another great piano only track to vibe to, Maxene Cyrin’s piano cover of the Pixies “Where Is My Mind” is as beautiful as it is haunting.