Updated: Feb 10
This weekend, the world celebrates one of the most commercially exhausted holidays of the year: Valentine's Day. On February 14th, couples gather in pairs to feed each other cream-covered strawberries and drown in pink champagne to the sound of snuggly-sweet pop songs. But that is not everyone's cup of tea. In order to switch it up a little bit in 2021, we decided to serve you some not-so-sweet ear candy for Valentine's Day. We present to you: a handpicked selection of -no-love songs you probably will not hear in any stereotypical rom-com movie.
PAPI by RUBI ROSE
If you do not know Atlanta-based Eritrean rapper and model Rubi Rose from her breakthrough hit "Big Mouth", you probably remember her from the red latex-wrapped cameo she served in Cardi B and Megan Thee Stallion's music video for "WAP". On the seventh track of her debut EP, Rubi raps about a Latin Lover on the down-low in her signature raunchy voice to a Latin-inspired beat. This song is not necessarily the background to the greatest loves of all, but it definitely serves some spicy vibes with a side of single confidence. In any case - "Papi" is one to add to your sexy playlist for sure.
LETTER TO MY EX by GIRLI
On her first EP since having fully found her voice as a bisexual indie artist, "Ex Talk", British singer GIRLI sings her heart out to grungy punk-pop inspired melodies. One of the highlights of the EP is its lead single "Letter To My Ex", serving as the perfect post-breakup song for all those who are healing from a broken heart on Valentine's Day. Between crying and screaming, GIRLI celebrates and mourns her newfound freedom - the perfect sing-along for a night drunk on champagne and bittersweet memories!
HEAVY ON THE LIQUOR by ROCKY BADD
On "Heavy On The Liquor", Detroit rapper Rocky Badd fights her inner insecurities and alcohol-infused jealousy in a lyrical battle with herself. Between getting riled up on drunken theories of her man cheating on her, and trying to calm herself down as a voice of reason, Rocky Badd lets her inner possessive girlfriend roam free. Ladies, you'll be mumbling along to this if you spend Valentine's Day waiting at home for your significant other, trying to get to the bottom of the bottle as the minutes keep passing. This song is raw, relatable - and a little uncomfortable, too.
REBEL GIRL by BIKINI KILL
Since 1990, Bikini Kill made it clear that punk was not just a male thing, that girls could also be at the forefront and that they could also break paradigms, even at a time when the taboo towards homosexuality was still widely judged. The American Punk band came out with "Rebel Girl" a love song dedicated to another girl, a song that at that moment overturned all the traditional heterosexual figures of the music up to that moment. The song brought a loud, free and open lesbian perspective to the table, ready to face everything that came after. Later, that song would become the anthem of the most revolutionary feminist movement of music "Riot Grrrl", becoming the most recognized musical expression of the movement that provided the first space in which womxn in music tackled the conflict of inequality and decided to fight it, united and organized.
ROOMS ON FIRE by STEVIE NICKS
"Rooms on Fire is about me. Rooms on Fire is about a girl who is a rock'n'roll star who has pretty much accepted the fact that she will never ever be able to be married or have those children that she wanted or the husband that she wanted or that deep, deep love that she wanted and she's accepted it" said Stevie Nicks in an interview with the BBC in 1989. A song inspired by the brief relationship with British producer Rupert Hine.
Whether you prepare for some no-strings-attached romance, starting a riot, celebrating and mourning newfound freedom, or feeling furious with jealousy this Valentine's Day - these songs will provide the right soundtrack. Rest assured that you are not alone, and you have got great company in however you feel with these badass artists by your side!