Mood Music: GET PUMPED

Feeling that mid-semester slump? All you need is a good pump-up playlist so that you can tackle that midterm paper or get through those all-night study sessions. As the Queen of Procrastination, here are some tried-and-true tracks that’ll get you moving and excited enough to get back to bid’ness.

1. C2C (France) – “Down the Road”

In order to properly psych yourself up, you need to build up to it, like this C2C track off their debut album, TETR4 (pronounced “tetra”). Native to Nantes – a city in western France – these four DJs have sequentially won the Disco Mix Club World Team DJ Championship several times and the 2013 European Border Breakers Awards. TETR4 has reached platinum status in France and “Down the Road” has charted in both France and Belgium. It starts off mellow with some smooth blues guitars and some soulful humming. Then, in a beautiful marriage of live instrumentals and computerized beats with C2C’s skillful mixing and scratching, the track picks up speed and lifts your spirits. This is the perfect song to get you started on a night full of work. Down that road you go toward getting things done and getting some shut eye.

2. The Go! Team (UK) – “The Power is On”

From sunny Brighton, this six-piece band uses a melange of instrumentation and styles from distorted guitars to furious hand clapping and chanting that reminds you of old playground songs. This track, from their debut album Thunder, Lightning, Strike released in 2004, features Ninja’s hypnotic and oddly energizing lead vocals. Since the track has been used in numerous ads for sports teams, it’s easy to see why it’s the perfect pump-up song. The urgent percussions, brass and chorus are telling you to get to it and finish what you’ve started. Now go!

3. MIKA (UK) – “Elle Me Dit”

Inspiring British singer-songwriter, Mika, tries his hand at writing – and singing – in French! The first single for his third studio album, “Elle Me Dit,” is a bubbly, head-bopping inducing track that was made for movement. Though there is an English version called “Emily”, the lyrics for the original French version flow more naturally and honestly. While this track is pure pop confection – like most of the track on The Origin of Love – it’s the lyrics that’ll get you grooving. As Mika sings the chorus, “Pourquoi tu gâches ta vie?” (“Why are you wasting your life?”) you’ll begint to ponder the question as well as feel more motivated and regain your joie de vivre!

4. The Wombats (UK) – “Let’s Dance to Joy Division”

Without fail, “Let’s Dance to Joy Division” will always get you off your feet and whipping your hair all over the place. Liverpool natives Murph, Dan and Norwegian-born Tord pull out all the stops with fast guitars, cheeky lyrics, and pounding drums. From their first studio album The Wombats Proudly Present: A Guide to Love, Loss & Desperation released in 2007, this track highlights the drunken escapades of the lead singer, Murph, which include dancing on a table to Joy Divison’s “Love Will Tear Us Apart”. Perhaps this track may also inspire you to have your own misadventures…after you’ve finished that take-home midterm.

5. 1990s (UK) – “You Made Me Like It”

Hailing from Glasgow, Scotland, this three-piece garage rock band is signed to Rough Trade Records and has released two studio albums so far. “You Made Me Like It” is the lead single from their 2007 album Cookies. The opening dynamic guitars merge smoothly with lead singer Jack McKeown’s imperfect but appropriate vocals. It’s certainly not a show of vocal finesse but a study of how a vigorous beat, lively guitars and a catchy chorus are essential to finding your drive and reaching your full productive potential.

by Teta Alim 


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