The Martlet’s Valentine’s Day Playlist 2.0

Culture Music
Illustration by Niusha Derakhshan, Design Director
Illustration by Niusha Derakhshan, Design Director

It’s midnight on Valentine’s Day and something’s gone wrong.

After a consensual and sober-minded decision to get in bed together, you and your boyfriend/girlfriend/significant other/Tinder pity date are knocking boots, as it were.

But something’s just not clicking. And, as you listen to the squirrels on the tree outside your window having a better time than you, you realize your mistake: you forgot to put music on.

So what do you do? You quickly find the Martlet’s Valentine’s Day Playlist, Second Edition, and let the good times rock and roll.

This year’s playlist follows a similar vibe to last year’s. Songs with a simple beat (you don’t want something so complicated as to throw off any repetitive motion) and lots of bass, complemented with synths and soaring vocals. These choices are completely subjective, of course, but seeing as I didn’t feel like making a Valentine’s Day Playlist filled with Justin Bieber apologizing to me, this is what you’ve got to work with.


Martlet’s Valentine’s Day Playlist 2016:

California Girls – NoMBe

Afternoon – Tender

What About Us – Chet Faker, Flume


Two Weeks – FKA twigs

About Us – JOY.

Wicked Games – The Weeknd

Coloring – Kevin Garrett

Devotion – Jessie Ware

Get Good (Infinitefreefall Remix) – St. South

Armour – Tender

Gold – Chet Faker

Ignition (Remix) – R. Kelly


We start off with a track from L.A.-based artist Noah McBeth, or “NoMBe.” The song, called “California Girls” is one of the sexiest West Coast anthems I’ve ever heard; you can practically hear the saltwater dripping off of McBeth’s flow.

A couple songs later and we hear from hip-hop indie darling FKA twigs. Her song “Two Weeks” is possibly the sultriest on the playlist — twigs’s vocals deliver longing and desperation in equal measure, and the lyrics — “I can quench that thirst / I can treat you better than her” — fit with the bumping and grinding theme we’ve got going on.

Twigs is followed by Australian producer-artist Olivia McCarthy, or JOY., one of two artists to make a return from last year’s playlist. Her new release “About Us” contains lyrics in a similar vein of twigs’s, but a quicker tempo, a heavier lean on doubled vocals, and sweeping synthesizers make this track stand out and adds a nice new dimension to the playlist.

After a rousing entry from The Weeknd, whose song features the not-so-subtle lyric, “Let me see that ass,” we get to the really intimate portion of our program. Kevin Garrett, a singer-songwriter from Pittsburgh, makes his Martlet debut with his simple but compelling tune “Coloring.” Featuring more piano than synthesizer, this song is definitely a slow jam; however, Garrett’s James Blake-esque vocals and a great beat mean it’s more than capable of holding its own against the other entries in this list.

Next comes a tune from English singer/songwriter Jessie Ware, one from the Australian solo act St. South, followed by the second of two entries from Tender — a great up-and-coming band from London — until we finally get to the King of the Martlet’s V-Day Playlists: Chet Faker.

His tune “Gold” is his second entry this year and his fourth over two years, and it’s probably his best yet. It seems to move at the perfect tempo, and it’s actually a fantastic song regardless of the bedroom activities taking place — so don’t blame me if your partner wants to stop what you’re doing and give their full attention to the song.

Finally, with the obvious inclusion of R. Kelly’s classic “Ignition (Remix),” we hit the end of the playlist.

Congratulations to those who managed to last the whole way, and, hey, even if you didn’t, well done for trying. Feel free to e-mail me and let me know how you finished off.

Hang on, no, don’t do that. Oh God. Forget I said that. Eugh.

You can listen to our V-Day playlist on Spotify AND 8tracks. Happy serenading!