New Year’s Eve isn’t for everyone. Like traveling itself, some people prefer to stay home, near loved ones, while others organize elaborate parties 1,000miles away. Yet there is one element that links both holiday and holiday – however we choose to observe them: Overwhelming potential, a glimpse of eternal optimism, and the promise of a new day.
Like New Year’s Eve, that first night in any foreign city is beyond magical, mystical, an upbeat and empty canvas to fill with our own ideas and conversations. Like that first night in any foreign city, New Year’s Eve is bustling, bursting with anticipation, an entr’acte of all our calendar goals and ambitions.
So apologies if these sound too pop-ish, or juvenile. But that’s what New Year’s Eve – or the best moments of travel – should be. An immersion in innocence. A journey in confidence. That place where, just once in every 365 days, the streets are ours.
1.) We Are Scientists – After Hours – The ultimate in end-of-year anthems, let this be a mantra for 2013: “We’re fine soaking up the hours that everyone else throws away….This night is winding down, but time means nothing….”
2.) Boy In A Box – Moon Comes Up – “Hey there you, open up your eyes!” A call to the folks out there who’ve been “hypnotized”; shed the shackles, return to your crazy-kid days, and watch that moon come up…
3.) Free Energy- Dream City – This appeared on an original mix a good friend made when I moved to New Zealand. I promise, it inspires. “When the stars are shining on you/ the street lights are far beyond you/ the dream lights are turning on/ you know where you are…” It’s rare in life to feel those moments of “fitting” a place, but listen to this, and you will…
4.) Little Red – Rock It – This Aussie song was voted one of the best of 2010 on Triple J radio. Well deserved, when you soundtrack their soft harmonies with a little synth and a night that never ends. “Rock it till the break of day/ don’t stop rockin now, no way/ everybody feels this way/ this is how we play these games.”
5.) Amy Macdonald – This Is The Life – “Where you gonna go, where you gonna sleep tonight?/ And you’re singing the songs, thinking this is the life…” If you overlook the idea of drunken debauchery, then this is a grand guitar melody about making the most of time, friends, and – simply – this moment.
6.) One Night Only – Just For Tonight – BritPop at it’s best. Easy lyrics and a lot of smooth accent. The message? Life is short, so “Sing like you want this/ just for tonight./ Just maybe we’d made it/ sing like you want this…”
7. ) The Wombats – Tokyo – While New Year’s Eve, or any trip, should be filled with more magic than misery, maybe there are a few places we’ll compare nostalgically – wishing to be back there, not here… “Finally, I know now what it takes/ it takes money and aeroplanes/ If you love me let me go/ back to the bar in Tokyo/ where the demons in my past let me in peace.”
8.) Richard Hawley – Tonight The Streets Are Ours – This makes the opening credits of the documentary, “Exit Through the Gift Shop.” Paired in the film with shots of street artists, it also works for the rest of us – artists of a different sort, painting the world in bigger visions and brighter colors… “You know that tonight, the streets are ours.”
Best wishes for your 2014. Am I missing songs on this New Year’s Eve playlist? Share them!