Thank God it's Friday. We've made it to the end of another week. However, we all know it wasn't a joy ride getting here. Between missing your train by a second, nearly losing your phone and walking around NYC while unknowingly flashing pedestrians—yes, these all happened to me—life can get stressful. That's why Steve Jobs invented the iPod. There's no better way to change your mood than to unload with some stress-free songs. To get you started, here's a collection of a few favorites I use to unwind. So, whether you're working late or want to pull out your hair because of the jerk on the other line, these five songs will have you calm, collected and cool in no time. Your hair will thank you later.
1. Paradise (Coldplay—Mylo Xyloto)
Fresh off their new album, Coldplay's second single will send you to your own retreat. Forget the white walls of your office and bland cubicle. This song will have you sailing away to your own personal island. Runner-Up: "Don't Panic" from their album Parachutes. How appropriate.
2. Dreaming Out Loud (One Republic—Dreaming Out Loud)
This song starts off slow, but picks up quickly at the chorus and will not only put you at ease, but will also inspire you to get back on track with it's gradual upbeat tempo. Interesting enough, this song is not available on the regular album. You need to get the deluxe version to get access to the title song. Honorable mentions: "All Fall Down" and the first track "Say (All I Need)." I suggest giving the entire album a listen since each song flows perfectly into the other.
3. Bliss (Muse—Origin of Symmetry)
If you're not a fan of Muse, than the cliché song to pick is Starlight. However, Bliss has a beautiful intro before becoming more heavy and transcending into an alternative sound. If you can deal with some alternative rock, and are flexible to try something new, then this, Cave, or Butterflies and Hurricanes (my personal favorite) may be for you. If those songs don't do it for you try out Muse's three-part symphony: Exogenesis. There aren't many lyrics—until part three. If you're a fan of classical music, you'll get a hint of Chopin around part two. Don't be fooled though, the entire piece, which runs over 12 minutes, is original.
4. Life in Technicolor ii (Coldplay—Prospekt's March)
"Gravity, release me and don't ever hold me down. Now my feet won't touch the ground." If that doesn't motivate you to get back on task, nothing will. I'm a big Coldplay fan, so forgive me if I'm biased, but I find a lot of their music comforting and relaxing. "Life in Technicolor ii" is of course, the same as the first song but with lyrics. So, if you were taken away by the harmonious trancelike sounds of the first, think of this as an added bonus.
5. Champagne Supernova (Oasis—(What's the Story) Morning Glory)
Forget the Verve's rehashed "Bittersweet Symphony." Oasis' Supernova will deliver the same effect, if not better. If you're not up for picturing kaleidoscope colors or searching in the sky for diamonds, check out "Don't Look Back in Anger." That song will cool down any pent up air.
Naturally, I'm going to suggest more Coldplay. Seriously though, check out Viva La Vida, or search them on Spotify. (You'll thank me later for both.) After all that, if you're still stressed out, try creating a Pandora or Grooveshark channel using some of the songs or artists listed above or some of your favorites.