Top 40 - Valentine's Break Up Songs: 30-21


In case you hadn't noticed, it's Valentine's Day on Tuesday and a lot of couples will be getting all loved-up this weekend. David Ames has the soundtrack for you if you're more left in the lurch than lovey-dovey, with part two of his Top 40 Break Up Songs. Here's numbers 30-21....

You can find PART ONE of the list HERE



30. Taking Back Sunday – “Great Romances of the 20th Century”
Track 5 on Tell All Your Friends (2002)

This album is one of the best of the early 2000’s and that is because of great songs like this one. Taking Back Sunday is one of those bands who showcase impressively emo/post-hardcore music with clever and witty lyrics. Most of the songs deal with the destruction of different relationships and this one is no different. Lazzara screams “Please, please, I’m running out of sympathy” letting us know that the relationship is basically over and then he follows with “Let’s just get this over with.” I love the use of long, held-out instruments and percussion pauses to build to a fulfilling end.

*Key Line* - “She says. ‘Come on, come on, let’s just get this over with.” I never said I’d take this lying down and I’ve crawled home from worse than this.”





29. Bush – “Letting the Cables Sleep”
Track 11 on The Science of Things (1999)

Bush is one of those bands that is mocked a lot, especially when compared to other bands of their time period but they have always been one of my favorite bands. I loved them when they first came out and Gavin Rossdale was the reason I started playing music. This song, off of their fourth album, is all about a relationship falling apart and neither party will deal with the issues. Communication is key in a relationship and in this song, Rossdale shows that without talking about their problems, the relationship is doomed to fail.

*Key Line* - “Silence is not the way. We need to talk about it.”





28. Jeff Buckley – “Hallelujah”
Track 6 on Grace (1994)

This song needs no introduction. It has been performed and covered by dozens of artists but there is no better version in my humble opinion than Jeff Buckley. You can feel the pain and sadness in his voice as he reflects over a relationship which is falling apart. I love the use of biblical and mythological allusions to help build his sadness and in the end, with the final verse, we are treated to an incredible series of lines about how love is really just about hurting someone before they hurt you. In those final lines, you get the message of the song—love is pain.

*Key Line* - “Maybe there's a God above but all I've ever learned from love was how to shoot somebody who outdrew you. And it's not a cry that you hear at night, it’s not somebody who's seen the light, it's a cold and it's a broken Hallelujah.”





27. Dashboard Confessional – “The Best Deceptions”
Track 3 on The Places You Have Come to Fear the Most (2001)

Here we see Dashboard Confessional providing wonderfully witty lyrics about realizing that their partner doesn’t deserve them anymore. The song is all about a person who has found out that their partner has cheated and although the other party tried to hide from the truth, it came out anyway. I remember being hurt about my long-time relationship which fell apart and screaming “Don’t you see that the charade is over!” at the top of my lungs. Carrabba has just the right amount of grit in his voice to make the emotion of this song soar. It feels almost triumphant—he has found out the truth and has moved on. It’s over!

*Key Line* - “So kiss me hard ‘cause this will be the last time that I let you.”





26. Have Mercy – “Plastic Covered Furniture”
Track 7 on A Place of Our Own (2014)

As stated before, Have Mercy, much like Damien Rice, have cornered the market on hurt in their songs. After seeing them live at Warped Tour two years ago, I have devoured everything they have released and am eagerly awaiting the new album, out this spring *go buy it*. This song details a one-sided relationship where the singer has done everything possible for their partner but has been shoved aside anyway. The chorus is a wonderful testament to Brian Swindle’s skill as a lyricist. He was there always, and she kept him in the background but he never left and instead she took him continuously for granted.

*Key Line* - “I was in every single picture you never hung on your wall. You put me on the back burner.
I will be there 'til you need me in your life like plastic covered furniture.”





25. Coheed and Cambria – “The Homecoming”
B-Side from The Afterman: Ascension (2012)

I have said this before and I’ll say it again: Coheed and Cambria is the best band ever (there may be some bias in that statement). This song is one of those gems that on one hand I wish would receive the full album treatment and on the other, I love the paired down version presented to us. It seems to deal with the someone who has lost the love of their life and in turn are either drinking their problems away or are taking more *ahem* permanent measures to deal with the pain. Claudio Sanchez’s voice delivers as it always does, pouring out emotion and pain for the listener.

*Key Line* - “Please level with me, Understand, I'd do anything for you. Seize any moment while you can
This void's coming after you, ‘Cause loneliness is why you hurt. Just don't kill the messenger.”





24. Adele – “Turning Tables”
Track 3 on 21 (2011)

Oh, Adele—as much as I get made fun of for enjoying her music, there is really no one else in modern pop music who 1) seems to really understand the emotion of heartbreak and 2) can actually sing. This song deals with a relationship that is falling apart and one party can no longer stand the shitty games their partner continuously plays. Adele lets us know that she can no longer let the person in because she can’t deal with the heartbreak anymore. This is a perfect sentiment for the sorrow of a solo Valentine’s Day.

*Key Line* - “I can't keep up with your turning tables. Under your thumb, I can't breathe.”





23. Wage War – “The River”
Track 6 on Blueprints (2015)

Anger is one of the prime emotions when dealing with a breakup and this song provides multiple moments of seething rage at the person who has done you wrong, used you, and threw you away. While most of Wage War’s music has an uplifting vibe, this song is bubbling over with rage. By screaming lines like “Trust is dead like everything else you said,” and “I guess I wasn’t enough for you,” we are treated to someone who has been cheated on and now recognizes they can and deserve to do better. If you are pissed off this valentine’s Day, there are few songs better than this. Let me just leave you with another great line: “Here’s to a past I’ll never need, here’s to you – rest in peace.” *insert breakdown and start punching things*

*Key Line* - “Your lips and your lies have severed the ties, I don't deserve this and you don't deserve me.”





22. Straylight Run – “Existentialism on Prom Night”
Track 3 on Straylight Run (2004)

There are few songs which bring nostalgia like this for me. I remember just having graduated high school and hearing this song during a pretty rough breakup (a two-year relationship). It moves in a very melancholy memory and talks about how people are in charge of their own destinies but that we will always look to those days in our past and wish to reclaim them. We would give anything to go back to those days where the real world hadn’t quite honed in on ours and we were free to do things that would become impossible once we left the safety of high school. This song is beautiful and haunting and provides the perfect amount of sadness and hopefulness.

*Key Line* - “You would kill for this, just a little bit, just a little bit, you would…”





21. Emily Browning – “Asleep”
Track 8 on Sucker Punch: Original Soundtrack (2011)

I know I will probably get flack for choosing this cover. Emily Browning recorded this cover of the amazing Smith’s song for Zach Snyder’s Sucker Punch, a movie that is universally jeered (although I absolutely loved it). I think the Smith’s version of the song is great but for some reason, the Browning version resonates more for me. It may be that her voice maintains that innocence which the message of the song seems to need. This song covers the mindset of someone who simply wants to die. They are lonely and unhappy and they feel that no one can fix them. They don’t want to cause hurt but they know for sure that they would be happier if they never woke up.

*Key Line* - “Don’t feel bad for me, I want you to know deep in the cell of my heart I will be so glad to go.”


Come back tomorrow for more songs for the broken hearted.

Images - Amazon