31st December, 2020

by Annie Howard

Music fulfills such an essential, everyday role within the bones of my life that I can all too easily forget its deeper magical properties. In the unsettled late-night silence of the recent past, certain songs have reasserted their essential purpose: to carve a deep well within myself in which I can burrow, and from within that recessed space, unlock emotions that need release. When I’m awoken from a dream of dancing close with friends at shuttered nightclubs, I put on Daft Punk’s “Digital Love”; when I want to picture those people in the same state of nocturnal reverie, sharing the same moon above, I listen to John Maus’s “Hey Moon.” Some songs create a mood of impeccable stillness that lulls me to a more restful state, but sometimes, the big cathartic release of a song like Angel Olsen’s “Chance” is necessary. No matter what, I hope you might find something incandescent in these songs, bright enough to eclipse any other lingering midnight doubts.


Annie Howard is a writer, urbanist, and historian based in Chicago. Should the world come to an end, catch them biking to the gay beach with a book in hand. You can follow their work on Twitter @t_annie_howard.