So maybe we're hopeless romantics after all.
Happy Valentine's Day!
Ok, so maybe I was a bit cynical last week, but as much as I love celebrating being single, I do know that every now and then, a good love song is just what we need. Even if you are celebrating with a loved one or on your own this year, I feel like the romantic vibes of the holiday are contagious and you can't help but smile a little when you hear a song that reminds you of your love: past, present, or future. These are some of my favorite love songs from the sweet to the sexy to the somber. Check it out.
Ariana Grande | "The Way"
This song is perfect for new love. It feels like surrendering to an unsuspected love.
Alabama Shakes | "This Feeling"
Alabama Shakes are pros at writing visceral songs that are totally for when you're in your feelings. This is definitely one of them. Put this on your playlist to wind down with a bottle of wine with your loved one at the end of the night.
The Beach Boys | "God Only Knows"
Growing up on The Beach Boys, this is my favorite love song of all time. It says it all in the hook, "God only knows what I'd do without you." Aw.
Demi Lovato | "Yes"
I love this song because it says what is sometimes so hard to say. It's the perfect musical illustration of what it's like to say "yes" completely to someone. Beautiful + confident.
Ed Sheeran | "Hearts Don't Break Around Here"
I feel like this is the most underrated song on Sheeran's latest album especially after "Perfect" became popular. Although "Perfect" is beautiful, I love the jubilance of this song. I love the themes of trust and faith in Sheeran's lyrics. It's faith that your loved one can be their own person, but still be yours. What's more romantic than that?
Father John Misty | "Chateau Lobby #4 (in C for Two Virgins)"
For the offbeat lovers this song is Father John Misty's version of a love making song. It sounds inherently romantic, but be sure to listen closer to the lyrics to capture all of the quirky details.
Johnnyswim | "You + I"
Johnnyswim is always on the backburner for me, but they're consistently one of my favorites. This song is a powerful anthem of unity between you and your lover.
P!nk | "You Get My Love"
P!nk is one of the best performers of our time. I love her more stripped down songs like this one that showcase the power and emotion in her vocal performance. This one is bittersweet but it hits you right in the feels.
Radiohead | "True Love Waits"
This song got a lot of buzz when Radiohead finally released a recorded version of the song. The song had been performed live over twenty years but only appeared on their most recent album A Moon Shaped Pool. This song is also a bittersweet one. "True Love Waits" is the perfect song for anyone who's had issues with timing and the stars are aligning for this valentine's day.
Sara Bareilles | "I Choose You"
Nothing feels better than when another human chooses you and you choose them. Sara Bareilles captures that feeling of readiness and confidence in this gorgeous song.
Dua Lipa | "Genesis"
This is one of my new favorites by Dua Lipa. This is a song about second chances. Maybe Valentine's Day will inspire you to give someone from your past a second chance.
Rita Ora | "Your Song"
Ever have a song that just makes you think of your person? Rita Ora captures that feeling perfectly in "Your Song" along with a million relatable details.
G-Easy x Halsey | "Him + I"
This song is totally couple goals. It's hot and sweet all at once.
Demi Lovato | "Sexy Dirty Love"
This one is super sexy and perfect to show your loved one how into them you are.
Julia Michaels | "Issues"
One of the best songs in 2017, in my opinion, "Issues" has a ton of personality. Does your lover accept your for who you are and vice versa? Julia Michaels captures that perfectly here.
Niall Horan | "Slow Hands"
This song by former One Direction member Niall Horan is super sexy. Put it on your mix tape to your loved one to show them how badly you want them this Valentine's Day.
Tennis | Matrimony
Tennis is possibly the cutest music duo since Johnny and June. This song "Matrimony" gives me all of the feels.
Eighty Ninety | "Your Favorite Song" Loote Remix
This brother duo is one of our favorites at Popdust! We can't stop listening to the new Loote remix of their song "Your Favorite Song." It's the perfect reflective jam for V-Day. Oh and Taylor Swift loves it too. She put it on her guest playlist for Spotify.
Kyan Palmer | "Can't Help It"
Kyan Palmer recently released this amazing banger that perfectly captures finally falling into something scary or dangerous with someone: risking it all for that love high. What better day than Valentine's Day to take that leap?
Beach House | "Take Care"
This song is very near and dear to my heart. It's so simple but it says something we all want to hear: "I'll take care of you."
Let's take a look at Nazi-inspired fashion.
Villains always have the best outfits.
From Darth Vader's polished black space armor to The Joker's snazzy purple suit, bad guys always seem to show up their protagonists in the fashion department.
Way more handsome than Batman. static.giantbomb.com
But could there possibly be a real world equivalent to the type of over-the-top villain fashion often found in fiction? It would have to be sleek and imposing, austere and dangerous. Probably black.
Maybe it's him. Maybe it's fascist ideology.
Let's call a spade a spade. From an aesthetic standpoint, the Nazi SS outfit is very well-designed. The long coat tied around the waist with a buckle portrays a slim, sturdy visage. The leather boots and matching cap look harsh and powerful. The emblem placements on the lapel naturally suggest rank and authority. And the red armband lends a splash of color to what would otherwise be a dark monotone. If the Nazi uniform wasn't so closely tied with the atrocities they committed during WWII, it wouldn't seem out of place at Fashion Week. Perhaps not too surprising, considering many of the uniforms were made by Hugo Boss.
Pictured: A real thing Hugo Boss did. i.imgur.com
Of course, today, Nazi uniform aesthetics are inseparable from the human suffering doled out by their wearers. In most circles of civilized society, that's more than enough reason to avoid the garb in any and all fashion choices. But for some, that taboo isn't a hindrance at all–if anything, it's an added benefit.
As a result, we have Nazi chic, a fashion trend centered around the SS uniform and related Nazi imagery.
History of Nazi Chic
For the most part, Nazi chic is not characterized by Nazi sympathy. Rather, Nazi chic tends to be associated with counterculture movements that view the use of its taboo imagery as a form of shock value, and ironically, anti-authoritarianism.
The movement came to prominence in the British punk scene during the mid-1970s, with bands like the Sex Pistols and Siouxsie and the Banshees displaying swastikas on their attire alongside other provocative imagery.
Very rotten, Johnny. i.redd.it
Around this time, a film genre known as Nazisploitation also came to prominence amongst underground movie buffs. A subgenre of exploitation and sexploitation films, Naziploitation movies skewed towards D-grade fare, characterized by graphic sex scenes, violence, and gore. Plots typically surrounded female prisoners in concentration camps, subject to the sexual whims of evil SS officers, who eventually escaped and got their revenge. However, the most famous Nazisploitation film, Ilsa, She Wolf of the SS, flipped the genders.
The dorm room poster that will ensure you never get laid. images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com
Ilsa was a female SS officer and the victims were men. She spent much of the movie wearing her Nazi uniform in various states, sexually abusing men all the while. As such, Ilsa played into dominatrix fantasies. The movie was a hit on the grindhouse circuit, inspiring multiple sequels and knock-offs and solidifying Nazi aesthetics as a part of the BDSM scene.
Since then, Nazi chic fashion has been employed by various artists, from Madonna to Marilyn Manson to Lady Gaga, and has shown up in all sorts of places from leather clubs to character designs in video games and anime.
Lady Gaga looking SS-uper. nyppagesix.files.wordpress.com
Nazi Chic in Asia
Nazi chic has taken on a life of its own in Asia. And unlike Western Nazi chic, which recognizes Nazism as taboo, Asian Nazi chic seems entirely detached from any underlying ideology.
A large part of this likely has to do with the way that Holocaust education differs across cultures. In the West, we learn about the Holocaust in the context of the Nazis committing horrific crimes against humanity that affected many of our own families. The Holocaust is presented as personal and closer to our current era than we might like to think. It is something we should "never forget." Whereas in Asia, where effects of the Holocaust weren't as prominent, it's simply another aspect of WWII which, in and of itself, was just another large war. In other words, Nazi regalia in Asia might be viewed as simply another historical military outfit, albeit a particularly stylish one.
In Japan, which was much more involved with WWII than any other Asian country, Nazi chic is usually (but not always) reserved for villainous representations.
OF COURSE. i.imgur.com
That being said, J-Pop groups like Keyakizaka46 have publicly worn Nazi chic too, and the phenomena isn't limited to Japan.
In South Korea, Indonesia, and Thailand, Nazi imagery has shown up in various elements of youth culture, completely void of any moral context. For instance, in Indonesia, a Hitler-themed fried chicken restaurant opened in 2013. And in Korea, K-Pop groups like BTS and Pritz have been called out for propagating Nazi chic fashion. Usually such incidents are followed by public apologies, but the lack of historical understanding makes everything ring hollow.
So the question then: is Nazi chic a bad thing?
The answer is not so black and white.
On one hand, seeing Nazi chic on the fashion scene may dredge up painful memories for Holocaust survivors and those whose family histories were tainted. In this light, wearing Nazi-inspired garb, regardless of intent, seems disrespectful and antagonistic. Worse than that, it doesn't even seem like a slight against authority so much as a dig at actual victims of genocide.
But on the other hand, considering the fact that even the youngest people who were alive during WWII are edging 80, "forgetting the Holocaust" is a distinct possibility for younger generations. In that regard, perhaps anything that draws attention to what happened, even if it's simply through the lens of "this outfit should be seen as offensive," might not be entirely bad. This, compounded by the fact that Nazi chic is not commonly associated with actual Nazi or nationalistic sentiments, might be enough to sway some people–not necessarily to wear, like, or even appreciate its aesthetics, but rather to understand its place within counterculture.
Ultimately, one's views on Nazi chic likely come down to their own personal taste and sensibilities. For some, Nazi chic is just a style, an aesthetic preference for something that happens to be mired in historical horror. For others, the shadow of atrocity simply hangs too strong.
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Summer Walker returns and is no longer playing games.
Summer Walker loves creating music but despises the music industry.
She regularly considers retirement and ended her 2019 tour early because of social anxiety. "I hope that people understand and respect that at the end of the day I'm a person, I have feelings, I get tired, I get sad," she said in a video post. "I don't want to lose myself for someone else." She was relentlessly vilified for her decision. Fans cited stiff meet-and-greets and chalked up Walker's cancellations to a sense of entitlement.
Then she was presented with the "Best New Artist" award at the 2019 Soul Train Awards, and her hurried acceptance speech was dissected by tasteless memes all across the country. Walker's candid cries for understanding remained completely ignored by years end. The truth of the matter is that Walker suffers from anxiety and stage fright that is all but totally crippling. So she did what any misunderstood artist does, she disappeared and stopped saying anything at all.