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Anxious about the election? Take a breath with these calming musical picks

Credit: Rukes Photo (www.rukes.com)

Pro tip: Get your post-election results self-care playlist ready ASAP. Chances are high everyone in the U.S. feels uneasy given high tensions between a divided nation in the midst of a spiraling pandemic.

There’s arguably more riding on this presidential election outcome than ever in our country’s history, and with a surge in mail-in or absentee ballots, it will likely be some time before we hear the final results. So in the meantime, I’m planning on hunkering down and preparing a days-long playlist to salvage what’s left of my sanity this November 2020. Here are some nostalgic mixes and albums on my list to help you survive the long wait for the end of the presidential election: 

Literally anything by Lane 8

This man could release a 12-hour loop of water dripping from a faucet and it would still calm me down in an apocalypse. Something about the deep house instrumentals and easy-listening melodies makes it so easy to listen to Lane 8 for hours.

Which is a good thing, given his playlist of mixes which spans over 50 hours of vibes. You may choose to sprinkle in individual songs from his three full-length albums, or selects from his This Never Happened label.

Kasbo’s new album, just released this month

A melodic yet indie-centric artist, Kasbo is another artist who strictly releases hits. I’ve been (not-so-patiently) waiting for this album since 2018, and now that it’s here I have advertised it to almost everyone in my life.

The Making of a Paracosm is out now on ODESZA’s Foreign Family Collective label. Or if something a little more nostalgic might alleviate your unease, consider checking out his Cry/Dance Mix series on SoundCloud. With mashups of some of our favorite electronica and melodic tunes, Kasbo makes each of three hour-long mixes seamlessly fly by.

You can also read our full review his newly-released album here.

Bonobo

The Britain-based longtime producer should always deserve a seat at the table of soothing electronic music. Blending downtempo trip-hop into soft instrumental melodies makes every track of his feel like a nice hug.

Across his lengthy discography, my favorite is the heavier jazz-influenced Black Sands album. From start to finish, the album transforms the same apartment you’ve been stuck in for eight months into a hammock by a warm beach.

San Holo’s vibrant tracks, perfect for the doom and gloom

A beacon of empathy and positivity, San Holo is another artist I couldn’t neglect on my list. From the emotionally intimate ballads to the light-bursting anthems, every song fits a different mood. Released in 2018, his debut Album1 radiates joy and serves as a great reminder of love this season.

More recently, his Stay Vibrant EP was the culminating product of the early quarantine months this year. Mature and caring in nature, tracks like in the end i just want you to be happy and (if only i could) hold you relate to everyone worried in isolation.

Additional tracks and artists on the roster:

Frequent guests on my anxiety-fueled playlists, here are some other ideas for a post-election playlist:

Take time to care for yourself and others this election season

I don’t think it’s a stretch to say we’re all a little more stressed these days. Grappling with the pressure of a landmark presidential outcome with major public health and well-being implications is a tremendous amount to handle. Now eight months into a global pandemic as well, the future feels increasingly scary. But, even though life looks much differently than last year, music is still the one thing that has the power to connect us all.

We only fail when we lose hope in each other. If you continue to care, continue to get through each day and believe things will be different, continue to believe it will be okay in the end if we keep going, there is nothing that will stop us. Together, we are so much stronger than apart. Above all, let’s take care of each other this week and beyond.

If you are experiencing a mental health crisis: you can call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline at 800-273-8255 or reach the Crisis Text line by texting HOME to 741741.

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