It’s Thursday, meaning it’s officially unofficially the optimal weekday for nostalgically reflecting on some of our favorite childhood songs and the memories we associate with them. Read on and relive the good old days with us through these throwbacks.
1. “Objects In The Mirror” by Mac Miller
“And I been thinkin’ bout her all the time, I never seen somebody put together perfectly”
This song demonstrated the late Mac Miller’s lyrical versatility as he had already broken out with his 2011 mixtape Best Day Ever and his 2012 album ‘Blue Slide Park,’ which topped the charts when it was released. The imagery in the beginning of the song make it seem like Miller is singing about the difficulties of love, but here he is using the imagery of a female to reflect on his addiction to drugs and music. I really like the live version of this song more because it comes off as more soothing and comforting. -Aik
2. “House of Cards” by Radiohead
This psychedelic tune is one of those throwbacks that never gets old. Every time I listen to it, it’s as if I’m hearing it for the first time. The haunting guitar makes you melt into the melody. This was just one of the many amazing songs that came from Radiohead’s 2007 album ‘In Rainbows.’ Radiohead is a band that I will pay to see in concert even when they are grey and aging. My fondest memories are accompanied by Radiohead songs. -Jessica Sadler
3. “Spaceman” by The Killers
I have loved the Killers for just about as long as I can remember. Their first album came out in 2004, and that led to a lifelong love of this great group. This song was the first one off the album ‘Day & Age’ that I ever heard, and I just couldn’t get it out of my head. Its infectious drum beat, the simple lyrics and the overall happy tone just draws you in and makes me think of when I was a kid. I don’t even know how many times me and my siblings sat around the kitchen on a summer day, listening to this album and singing along, over and over. (Also, this video lowkey is the best). -Evan Mendoza
4. “Sometimes” by My Bloody Valentine
My Bloody Valentine released their genre defining sophomore album Loveless in November of 1991. The hazy, layered and distorted production style mixed with the profoundly melancholy songwriting and performances gave way to a whole new style of music, and while they were never exactly a household name, their reach and influence spread far and wide.
One of the many highlights of the album is the 8th track, “Sometimes.” The exceptionally loud, fuzzy guitar part alongside the hushed vocals and overall serene mood of the song seem like they should contradict one another, but they really have the opposite effect, showcasing a uniquely cohesive and captivating piece of music. The song starts off very barebones featuring only the guitar and vocals but gradually builds, incorporating beautiful orchestral arrangements and ambient percussion to complement the already moody atmosphere. The lyrics focus on the idea of momentary, romantically charged bliss and the disheartening sadness that comes when one knows that the euphoria will not be long lived.
It’s just such a gorgeous, relatable, and, most importantly, human song. Its ability to convey such a vivid sense of longing and desire is enough to make even the strongest of heart and mind go all simp mode for a few minutes. While I did discover it within the past few years, it’s a song that makes me reflect on my life as a whole and takes me way back to simpler, happier times, thus, I consider it a major throwback. –Stevie S. Diesel
5. “Doo Wop (That Thing)” by Ms. Lauryn Hill
Where do I begin with this one? From as long as 15 years ago, I could remember myself jamming out to this song along with my cousins at my grandparents’ house. Since at the time the song was on daily rotation, I would always remember hearing it whenever I went to their house in Stockton. In terms of its influence on my current musical taste, I’d say it definitely made an impact in terms of warming me up to the world of hip-hop/rap and R&B. The funkiness of the beat alongside Lauryn’s flow made this song absolutely one of my top throwbacks. -Dillon Zabarte
6. “Tonight Tonight” by Hot Chelle Rae
Hot Chelle Rae was my favorite boy band throughout my years in middle school. I remember telling my grandma that they were the new Beatles, or telling my mom that they were the new NSYNC. It was that one phase that all “tween” girls have: associating themselves with a certain boy band, then obsessing over them for years. Their catchy chorus and vague lyrics also add onto that pop genre vibe of the 2010s. -Kat
7. “Clockwork” by Blackalicious
This song is one of my personal favorite rap songs ever. Coming off of the EP, ‘A2G,’ “Clockwork” is the second of seven songs in the track list. While the EP is most well known for the song “Alphabet Aerobics,” in which Blackalicious uses alliteration and goes through every letter of the alphabet in two minutes and sixteen seconds of greatness, “Clockwork” takes a more standard approach. The flow and rhyme in this song is fantastic, and whenever I listen to it, I get lost in the song and forget about everything else for awhile. While it is not as well known as other songs like “Alphabet Aerobics” and “Chemical Calisthenics,” the song certainly can hang with them. -Micheal Montijo
The Summer Set was one of my favorite bands in high school. In fact, I went to Bottom of the Hill in San Francisco for the first time when I was 13 to see these guys with an old friend. It was our first “club” show and it was awesome (it was an all-ages show, fyi). This song is a fun track about being in love and in the singer’s case, being in love with actress Chelsea Staub aka Chelsea Kane. Unfortunately the band disbanded about two years ago, but each member is doing their own thing now. -Monique
9. “Drowning (Avicii Remix)” by Armin Van Buuren
This song was one of the first songs that got me into EDM, specifically house. I had come across house music and other electronic music through YouTube and really liked Avicii’s style. The melody is very upbeat and different from a lot of electronic music. This was Avicii before he dropped the ‘True’ album which mixes electronic with country, soul and bluegrass, and it’s where he started move away from his house roots. I personally like the Avicii when he was pure house, and as cliche as it sounds, before he was mainstream. -Jaspreet
10. “More Than Alive” by The Ready Set
The Ready Set is a one man band (Jordan Witzigreuter) from Fort Wayne, Indiana. I was OBSESSED with his bedroom emo-pop back in middle school, and for people that know me, that probably explains A LOT about my current music taste. My favorite music tends to sound quite happy and upbeat, but has the angstiest lyrics — TRS definitely fits this bill. Between the cliche emo hair and late 2000s vibe, this track will have you smiling and frantically searching for your tightest skinny jeans.
All jokes aside, I think this dude is still grossly underrated; he’s working on more electronic-leaning music as TRS (wait for the last verse in the song below, it’ll break your heart), as well as indie pop tunes with his band Nekokat. -K-3PO
11. “Solo” by Iyaz
Another love song in my childhood that taught me how to express my loneliness. I think this definitely brings me back to when I was a kid and pop music was coming onto the radio in the Philippines that were coming from other countries. The repetitive nature and simple beat make you want to sing along. I felt like this song really taught me what it means to want to be in a relationship. And showed me how important finding friends and your significant other really is. -Kenzo Chua
12. “Everytime We Touch” by Cascada
Probably one of the most well known Eurovision contestants (imagine American Idol except between European indie artists), Cascada’s “Everytime We Touch” contains all the pre-2010 throwback disco pop your heart desires. With strong female vocals and quite the bop to dance to in your bedroom or when your roommate is probably out, you can’t help wanting to move to the catchy rhythm. To this day, I still find myself gravitating to this song about a nice healthy relationship where the two rely on each other in the hard times and want to make it long term. -Jacqueline Friedland
13. “Hit” by Section 25
Section 25 is a post-punk band from the United Kingdom. I was first introduced to this song when Kanye sampled it on his dark and melancholic “FML” off of ‘The Life of Pablo’ and I’ve been in love with it since. I really appreciate when artists can seamlessly integrate a sample from a different genre or generation of music. By doing so, listeners who weren’t alive during the time of Section 25 or aren’t immersed in punk like me can still discover their music. The depressing lyrics complimented with the slow tempo of the drums make “Hit” sensationally chilling and borderline hypnotic. -Aik
14. “Trouble” by NeverShoutNever
I love and hate this song. Love because of its catchy lyrics, playful melody, and it was playing around that time when the only thing we really had to think about was middle school drama (or at least helped me get away from my super conservative family issues and just enjoy the ideal middle school “stress”). I say hate because this song is cringe as hell. This was the phase when everyone had a Tumblr, side-swept bangs, “rawr” meant “I love you” and everyone wanted the English boyfriend (at my small town that is). I hate middle school, but this song is adorable. -Ranelle M. Sanchez
15. “Dum Dee Dum (JiKay Remix)” by Keys N Krates
This song is the main reason I fell in love with EDM (mostly trap music). When I went to Chicago for a family trip my cousin was a major EDM fan and the first song he showed me was “Dum Dee Dum.” The 808s, the bass, and most importantly, the trap caused me to fall in love with Trap remixes and made me want to have every song to be in the style of trap. This song is best listened to when you want to dance or jam to some upbeat music. I would recommend this song to people who are just getting started with EDM and are more into party style music. -Alex
16. “Parabol/Parabola” by Tool
“All this pain is an illusion”
I know that this is going to make me come across as literally the most stereotypical pseudo-intellectual, elitist Tool fanboy ever, but at this point I pretty much am so who cares? I could go on about Tool as a band or even just this song for hours and hours upon end, but I’ll keep this nice and brief for all you sane people out there. This song quite literally changed my life and the way I view music as a whole. I had discovered Tool through my uncle way back when I was just a kid, and I remembered hating the one song he played for me. But fast forward to my freshman year of high school, my hormone and teenage angst levels were at an all time high, and I decided I needed some edge in my life, so I gave them another try.
I ran the word “Tool” through the YouTubes and naturally, the name “Parabola” stood out to me (I was taking algebra at the time so I felt that it might help me in my studies). Needless to say, I was completely awestruck. Never had I heard something so primal, yet so existentially introspective at the same time. It was the first time that a piece of music made me feel as if there was more to life than what I was living at the time. And after that day, the rest was history.
Tool instantly became my favorite band, and ended up paving my path of music discovery and inspiration. Their music opened up so many doors for me acting as my sole catalyst in discovering a countless amount of fantastic artists, genres and styles of music that I am convinced I never would have found had I not clicked on that video. The song itself is a 9 minute, multi-phased epic, that soothes the soul as intensely as it melts the face. It just pounds the listener over the skull with a sledgehammer of progressive metal greatness and leaves them in a strange state of blissful enlightenment after it’s over (or it did in my case at least). I owe a lot to this song and this band, and I don’t think any proper Stevie S. Diesel throwback list would be complete without it.
(P.S. If the part at 4:25 in the linked video doesn’t make you headbang involuntarily, you may quite possibly be a robot.) –Stevie S. Diesel
17. “Party in Your Bedroom” by Cash Cash
If you were a scene kid, you might remember Cash Cash and their song, “Party in Your Bedroom.” It’s a dancey, fun track with hints of electronic and rock pop. These guys were totally the kings of emo pop back in the day. Now, Cash Cash makes super catchy EDM music and they are pretty big in the scene. They even got some radio play with “Take Me Home” ft. Bebe Rexha!
In fact, you can catch them at Pure Lounge nightclub in Sunnyvale this month! -Monique
18. “1,2 Step” by Ciara ft. Missy Elliot
Oooo, after going through my Spotify playlist of throwbacks, I couldn’t help but wonder how I didn’t include this song yet. In addition to many of the wonderful tracks I listened to while staying with my grandparents in Stockton, this was definitely another one that stuck out to me. Every time I heard the intro play, all I remember was me bobbing my head, jiving to the beat. In addition, the track particularly stood out to me because of how futuristic (ahead of its time), it sounded. This song could’ve come out last month and I genuinely wouldn’t have looked twice. Given the amazing beat, melody, and vocals, “One, Two Step” will always have a spot in any of my throwback playlists. -Dillon Zabarte
19. “On Melancholy Hill” by Gorillaz
My dad introduced me to the Gorillaz. With hits like “Dare” and “Feel Good Inc.” I knew that this weird, virtual band had a lot to offer. Then 2010 rolled around and I was introduced to one of my favorite albums of all time. The Gorillaz released ‘Plastic Beach’ along with their single, “On Melancholy Hill.” It’s not a very dramatic song, but it has these deep, lo-fi beats that drive the entire song. Along with some great harmony work in the background, this track is infectious and bopable, while still retaining the weirdness that make the Gorillaz the Gorillaz.
You never know when you might hear a good throwback on air — so tune in at 90.5 FM or stream us online! And let us know what essential songs we missed in the comments below!