20 Alt-Rock Songs For Your 2016 Election Playlist

20 Alt-Rock Songs For Your 2016 Election Playlist

These catchy tunes perfectly sum up the election so far.
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As election day creeps closer and closer, we all need a break from the constant drama of domestic politics. At least, I know I do. However, in keeping with the seasonal theme of politics, I've put together an election time playlist that goes perfectly with your whole "I wish I lived in Canada right now" vibe. So sit back, relax, and let the sweet sounds of alt-rock drown out the deepening sense of panic in your soul. Enjoy!

1. "It's the End of the World as We Know It" by R.E.M.

Ah, yes, it's the quintessential addition to any doomsday playlist. This catchy '80s tune will surely distract you from the eminent disaster we're speeding toward, at least for a little while.

2. "Ain't No Rest for the Wicked" by Cage the Elephant

Sure enough, these candidates just won't stop, no matter how much we may want them to. Neither age, nor medical diagnoses can keep these two down. This could be due to the rigorous campaign schedule, or it could be that any hint of rest will surely be interpreted as weakness. Either way, Hillary and Donald are in it for the long haul. Sadly.

3. "Bigmouth Strikes Again" by The Smiths

If you've been following along with the wonderful world of American politics, then you'll have no doubts as to whom this is referring to. Donald Trump is seemingly incapable of censoring his speech, which has lead to numerous public scandals. The most notable one being the recent "Hot Mic" bus incident, where Mr. Trump described how he would sexually assault women. Believe me, this old rock tune is much easier to listen to than a misogynistic, hate-filled rant.

4. "Good Ol' Fashion Nightmare" by Matt and Kim

Do you ever think that maybe this entire election season has been part of some extremely elaborate lucid dream? Unfortunately, this is one nightmare that you can't wake up from, no matter how hard you try.

5. "Hell" by Tegan and Sara

Yeah... I think this one speaks for itself.

6. "I Will Buy You a New Life" by Everclear

It's no secret that neither presidential candidate is wanting for money. The difference is that one has spent years building her career as a politician, while the other has centered his entire reputation around the fact that he lives in a lavish state of immense wealth. His legal dealings make it obvious that he handles many problems by simply throwing money at them and hoping for the best. However, allegations of bankruptcy may throw a wrench in his plan to buy the American people a "new life."

7. "I'm Not Over" by Carolina Liar

This one's an shout-out to the current POTUS, President Barack Obama. I'm so sorry I didn't appreciate you fully for the last eight years. I realize now just how much this country needs a leader like you. Please don't go, Sir. "I'm not over you just yet."

8. "Ignorance" by Paramore

Ignorance will always have a place among people who are unqualified for a job to which they are applying. Mr. Trump has spent his entire life in business, and has even garnered support by proudly declaring that he is not a politician. However, sometimes there are jobs that politicians are just best suited for, like President of the United States, for instance. In the interest of saving space, I won't even go into his ignorance of women, race, and sexuality. That could merit an entire book.

9. "Liar (It Takes One to Know One)" by Taking Back Sunday

What? These songs aren't all about Trump? Nope, sorry. While Mr. Trump does tend to lie whenever his mouth is open, I chose this one with Hills in mind. Perhaps the most memorable instance of lying throughout this campaign came when Hillary was caught using a private internet server. While she has owned up to her mistakes, it took a while to get there.

10. "Madness" by Muse

This one mainly refers to the election season as a whole, rather than any one person (no matter how apt that association may be). These past couple of years have sure been one weird and wild ride. However, Muse is here to ease your troubles with some smooth synth tunes.

11. "Megalomaniac" by Incubus

Attempting to obtain the highest office in the US is bound to be accompanied by at least some lust for power. However, Trump seems to be the true embodiment of this. His despotic rhetoric has even gained him support from Vladimir Putin himself. That's some high praise for anyone who dreams of tyranny.

12. "Regret" by New Order

How did we get here? Was this really the best America had to offer? We had so many chances to vote for different candidates, and now it appears that we have squandered them. With decreasing GOP support for Trump, it certainly seems like at least a few high-ranking Republicans regret their decision.

13. "Rich Kid Blues" by The Raconteurs

Don't you just hate it when all you have to get your business started is a small loan of $1 million? So sad. How is anyone able to survive on such scraps as this? Whether or not you sympathize with the plight of a humble millionaire just trying to make a new start in politics, this folksy alt song is perfect for drowning your sorrows.

14. "Rules Don't Stop" by We Are Scientists

Neither candidate in this election is averse to breaking a few laws. From Hillary's email fiasco to Trump's multiple lawsuits, these two obviously have some experience with circumventing the rules, whether through outright lying or by shelling out a few thousand dollars.

15. "The Sound of Settling" by Death Cab for Cutie

While this one may not be written specifically for the election, like the new Death Cab jam, "Million Dollar Loan," it sums up a sentiment that really hits home, especially for millennials like myself. If you're like me, you were probably feeling the Bern pretty strongly. However, after realizing that Hillary is our only hope for avoiding a Trump presidency, we've had no choice but to head for the Hills. Hey, she's better than nothing.

16. "Typical" by Mutemath

As much as I hate to say it, this really is what politics has come to. A lifelong politician legitimately struggling to outpace a pop culture icon. This is the new normal. Besides, although people may think that liking neither candidate is some new phenomenon, this happens every four years. Every time the election rolls around, people become disenchanted by the caliber of politicians we've produced. It's not a new sensation, sadly. It's "typical."

17. "Would You Fight for My Love?" by Jack White

Some people will say or do anything they can to get approval, especially politicians looking for your vote. Although it's certainly true that personal values can be very polarizing when candidates are concerned, that doesn't mean that either is going down without a fight. The past few months have truly shown that these two are willing to do what ever it takes to get the vote.

18. "Promises, Promises" by Incubus

Speaking of doing whatever it takes to get the vote, how about empty promises? Both candidates seem to be full of them. Is Mexico really going to pay for a racist symbol of oppression (aka, the wall)? Is anyone really going to solve the problems with our healthcare system? We can probably guess the answers to both of these questions right now, but that won't stop the candidates from saying otherwise.

19. "You've Got to Hide Your Love Away" by The Beatles

Come on, you didn't really think I'd get through 20 alt-rock songs without a shout-out to the most famous rock band of all time, did you? Here, The Beatles sum up what quite a few voters might be feeling right about now. Namely, the fact that they are afraid to say whom they're voting for. Really, there's no right answer to the question "Who are you voting for?" anyway. You're guaranteed to upset someone either way. The Beatles were definitely on to something here.

20. "You Just Can't Win" by Them

This '60s rock tune perfectly describes how many Americans feel this election season. It seems like many people don't want to vote for Trump or Hillary; yet, they may also feel like voting for a third party candidate is akin to not voting at all. No matter what the outcome, there's only going to be one real winner this year, and it's not the American people.

Cover Image Credit: Patrick Semanski

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8 Reasons Why My Dad Is the Most Important Man In My Life

Forever my number one guy.
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Growing up, there's been one consistent man I can always count on, my father. In any aspect of my life, my dad has always been there, showing me unconditional love and respect every day. No matter what, I know that my dad will always be the most important man in my life for many reasons.

1. He has always been there.

Literally. From the day I was born until today, I have never not been able to count on my dad to be there for me, uplift me and be the best dad he can be.

2. He learned to adapt and suffer through girly trends to make me happy.

I'm sure when my dad was younger and pictured his future, he didn't think about the Barbie pretend pageants, dressing up as a princess, perfecting my pigtails and enduring other countless girly events. My dad never turned me down when I wanted to play a game, no matter what and was always willing to help me pick out cute outfits and do my hair before preschool.

3. He sends the cutest texts.

Random text messages since I have gotten my own cell phone have always come my way from my dad. Those randoms "I love you so much" and "I am so proud of you" never fail to make me smile, and I can always count on my dad for an adorable text message when I'm feeling down.

4. He taught me how to be brave.

When I needed to learn how to swim, he threw me in the pool. When I needed to learn how to ride a bike, he went alongside me and made sure I didn't fall too badly. When I needed to learn how to drive, he was there next to me, making sure I didn't crash.

5. He encourages me to best the best I can be.

My dad sees the best in me, no matter how much I fail. He's always there to support me and turn my failures into successes. He can sit on the phone with me for hours, talking future career stuff and listening to me lay out my future plans and goals. He wants the absolute best for me, and no is never an option, he is always willing to do whatever it takes to get me where I need to be.

6. He gets sentimental way too often, but it's cute.

Whether you're sitting down at the kitchen table, reminiscing about your childhood, or that one song comes on that your dad insists you will dance to together on your wedding day, your dad's emotions often come out in the cutest possible way, forever reminding you how loved you are.


7. He supports you, emotionally and financially.

Need to vent about a guy in your life that isn't treating you well? My dad is there. Need some extra cash to help fund spring break? He's there for that, too.

8. He shows me how I should be treated.

Yes, my dad treats me like a princess, and I don't expect every guy I meet to wait on me hand and foot, but I do expect respect, and that's exactly what my dad showed I deserve. From the way he loves, admires, and respects me, he shows me that there are guys out there who will one day come along and treat me like that. My dad always advises me to not put up with less than I deserve and assures me that the right guy will come along one day.

For these reasons and more, my dad will forever be my No. 1 man. I love you!

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From One Nerd To Another

My contemplation of the complexities between different forms of art.

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Aside from reading Guy Harrison's guide to eliminating scientific ignorance called, "At Least Know This: Essential Science to Enhance Your Life" and, "The Breakthrough: Immunotherapy and the Race to Cure Cancer" by Charles Graeber, an informative and emotional historical account explaining the potential use of our own immune systems to cure cancer, I read articles and worked on my own writing in order to keep learning while enjoying my winter break back in December. I also took a trip to the Guggenheim Museum.


I wish I was artistic. Generally, I walk through museums in awe of what artists can do. The colors and dainty details simultaneously inspire me and remind me of what little talent I posses holding a paintbrush. Walking through the Guggenheim was no exception. Most of the pieces are done by Hilma af Klint, a 20th-century Swedish artist expressing her beliefs and curiosity about the universe through her abstract painting. I was mostly at the exhibit to appease my mom (a K - 8th-grade art teacher), but as we continued to look at each piece and read their descriptions, I slowly began to appreciate them and their underlying meanings.


I like writing that integrates symbols, double meanings, and metaphors into its message because I think that the best works of art are the ones that have to be sought after. If the writer simply tells you exactly what they were thinking and how their words should be interpreted, there's no room for imagination. An unpopular opinion in high school was that reading "The Scarlet Letter" by Nathaniel Hawthorne was fun. Well, I thought it was. At the beginning of the book, there's a scene where Hawthorne describes a wild rosebush that sits just outside of the community prison. As you read, you are free to decide whether it's an image of morality, the last taste of freedom and natural beauty for criminals walking toward their doom, or a symbol of the relationship between the Puritans with their prison-like expectations and Hester, the main character, who blossoms into herself throughout the novel. Whichever one you think it is doesn't matter, the point is that the rosebush can symbolize whatever you want it to. It's the same with paintings - they can be interpreted however you want them to be.


As we walked through the building, its spiral design leading us further and further upwards, we were able to catch glimpses of af Klint's life through the strokes of her brush. My favorite of her collections was one titled, "Evolution." As a science nerd myself, the idea that the story of our existence was being incorporated into art intrigued me. One piece represented the eras of geological time through her use of spirals and snails colored abstractly. She clued you into the story she was telling by using different colors and tones to represent different periods. It felt like reading "The Scarlet Letter" and my biology textbook at the same time. Maybe that sounds like the worst thing ever, but to me it was heaven. Art isn't just art and science isn't just science. Aspects of different studies coexist and join together to form something amazing that will speak to even the most untalented patron walking through the museum halls.

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