The songs that defined my university years

Written by Music

As an outgoing Music Editor, it feels fitting to reflect on the music that will remind me of the highs and lows of my time at Newcastle. However, I’ll warn you now that this won’t be particularly sentimental…about half the songs are just ones that remind me of nights out. But music has been so important to me throughout my time here, so I thought I’d break it down year-by-year.

In first year, I was pretty much friendless for the first semester and definitely relied on my headphones to hide how lonely I was walking between lectures. The one album that I listened to a ridiculous amount, and always fills me with a weird nostalgia for autumn of 2016 is Wolf Alice’s My Love Is Cool (Deluxe Edition). There was something about the haunting vocals and loud, intense guitar and drums that made me happy whenever I blasted them – maybe the noise helped drown out my fears of not fitting in and was just a great escape route?

I still love Wolf Alice now, and will always fondly remember this album for getting me through a difficult adjustment to university. (By the way, I have friends now, I swear). BUT THEN…I made friends! And I discovered Powerhouse and its unapologetic fondness for the cringiest, cheesiest pop you could ever imagine, and my musical memories take a sudden shift.

Enter ‘C’est La Vie’ by B*Witched. God, what a song. A new friend of mine professed her love for it and I still associate it with her now, as well as with the excitement of finding friends and singing along to fun songs. The sentiment of c’est la vie – “that’s life!” – to accept difficult situations as they are actually does make sense when thinking over my university experience. There’s definitely been really hard stressful times where all you can do is shrug it off and try your best to keep going (dissertation season, I’m looking at you), so I guess Powerhouse’s playlist is actually pretty deep.

I had the best time in second year, with a good group of friends and opportunities to get stuck into societies and student media. Now, Melodrama, our “Lorde and saviour” Lorde’s sophomore album, may have been released between my first and second year, but songs like ‘Green Light’ and ‘Perfect Places’ still remind me of the start of second year and the explosion of my social life.

A song that will remind me of probably all three years of my undergraduate here is a bit of a rogue one – ‘Sheila’ by Jamie T. Yeah, it’s old and yeah I have no need to be attempting to rap at Rebel Thursdays indie night but this song just reminds me of dramatically singing it to make my friends laugh at how ridiculous it all was.

When I think of a song that has nostalgia and some sort of metaphor for my university experience, it’s Tame Impala’s ‘The Less I Know The Better’. At times I’ve had to accept how much I don’t know about just surviving as an adult in university, and that’s okay. Cheers for the tunes Newcastle, I hope there’s more to come.

Last modified: 5th July 2019

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