Monday Music: Songs to make you feel like an ethereal forest nymph

Escape from reality with tunes meant for dancing in a forest at the witching hour

Monday Music: your weekly themed playlist. Image courtesy of The Peak.

By: Kyla Dowling, Staff Writer and Bog Being

It’s that time of the semester. Assignments are piling up, due dates are getting closer, and discussion board posts are at the absolute bare minimum. The confetti Canvas gives you isn’t enough to keep you going. It’s time to turn to escapism. Maybe you imagine yourself on a fabulous beach vacation in a post-COVID world. Maybe you’re one of those reality shifting TikTokers whose fantasy is going to Hogwarts. Me? I simply pretend I live in a forest with no ties to society, spending my time dancing around fairy rings, and bathing in the river in the moonlight. If you’d like to join me in my escapist fantasy while pointedly avoiding the essay you have due tomorrow, here are the songs I use to pretend that I am simply not a student. 

“Your Bones” by Of Monsters and Men

Image courtesy of SKRIMSL ehf

There’s something magical about this song and it’s evident from the first few seconds. Ragnar Þórhallsson’s voice is enchanting and promises to lull you to sleep as he croons about living a nomadic life. The marching band-esque drums that begin after the first verse add to the very notion he sings about — burning down your house and walking towards a new life. Nanna Bryndís Hilmarsdóttir joins him only for the chorus, her soprano adding a haunting harmony to the song. Of Monsters and Men have a tendency to write songs that make you feel renewed and powerful, and “Your Bones” is perhaps one of their best. The only issue is actually resisting the urge to pack your bags and wander into the wilderness to find a new life. 

“Babooshka” by Kate Bush

Image courtesy of Parlophone Records Ltd.

Yes, you probably know this song from TikTok. Yes, it tells an elaborate story about a woman testing her husband by sending him letters under a different name and watching as he falls in love with her false counterpart. Yes, the title sounds just like the Russian word for grandmother. Just trust me on this one. Put some noise-cancelling headphones in. Close your eyes. Imagine twirling through the woods, lit only by slivers of moonlight breaking through the canopy of trees. As the bass kicks in and the chorus hits, the lyrics explode out of Bush like she’s releasing all her worries — and with her, you release yours too. It’s you, the woods, and her resonant voice. There’s no agony here. 

“The Violet Hour” by Sea Wolf

Image courtesy of Atlantic Recording Corporation

I know what you’re thinking — why on earth would you tell me to listen to something from the Twilight: New Moon soundtrack? Hear me out: when you divorce the song from the whole “You nicknamed my daughter after the Loch Ness Monster?!” thing, it’s actually gorgeous. The lyrics are evocative, describing a lover using conflicting nature imagery: “Your back’s a meadow covered in snow / Your thighs are thistles and hothouse grapes.” Just as those lines imply, this song is incredibly sexy. With frontman Alex Brown Church’s crooning voice juxtaposed with the chorus’ electric guitar that comes back again during the bridge, you’ll want nothing more than to lay down on the riverbank and fall in love with the moon. 

“In A Week” by Hozier (ft. Karen Crowley)

Image courtesy of Rubyworks

Hozier is the king of otherworldly indie folk, and his songs fit the “running away to the woods and never coming back” vibe to a tee. “In A Week” takes this concept to a darker degree. The music depends almost primarily on acoustic guitar, making the main attraction the stirring lyrics and gossamer-like voices of Hozier and Crowley. The song builds towards the end, bass and electric guitar thrumming, as both singers opt up and repeat with fervency: “I’d be home with you.” Though gloomy, it’s almost romantic. Does anyone want to ditch society and decompose in a bog with me?