Picture this: it’s 7 a.m., you’ve just woken up to your alarm. Then you remember it’s Saturday so you can sleep in. You turn your alarm off and close your eyes in bliss. You wake up 10 minutes later to a second alarm. Then you realize it’s not Saturday, but Tuesday; a tragedy. (This definitely didn’t happen to me this morning. And it definitely didn’t inspire this playlist. Nope). But it’s okay; because you have the wonderful emo musings of Avril Lavigne to get you through this trying time.
After sulking and jamming out to Avril Lavigne’s complete discography, I have determined the 8 best Avril Lavigne songs for you cathartic listening pleasure:
8) “I’m With You”- Other than the calming strings and piano, the lyrics were really what I needed to hear this morning. It’s also a song that frequents my friends’ driving playlists, no matter how out of place it might feel nestled amongst Ed Sheeran or CoCoRosie. A banger in its own right, “I’m With You” serves emotional realness and offers security, even on a “damn cold night”.
7) “Warrior”- A beautiful ballad and battle cry of self-love. Good for those days when even the little things like not having enough soy milk left for your latte make it feel like your world is crashing down.
6) “When You’re Gone”- If there’s a relationship playlist made, this song is on it. Definitely something to listen to when you want to scream into the rain because you miss someone. Wonderfully crafted, the orchestral aspect of the song elicits emotion like no other.
5) “My World”- Oh so very Kelly Clarkson. More pop than punk rock, this track could be used in opening credits for 2000’s teen shows like Sabrina the Teenage Witch and Lizzie Maguire. Avril takes a softer approach to singing here, rather than shouting words with teen angst. “My World” belongs on playlists about finding your way in the world, perhaps next to Taylor Swift’s song “The Outside”.
4) “Sk8er Boi”- If you lived in the 2000’s, you’re a fan of “Sk8er Boi”. The catchy lyrics and the recognizable rhythm of the drums make this the perfect karaoke bop. Whether you’re in sixth grade and in love with the boy with the fringe and the braces, or you’re in your twenties and have fallen for the guy who wears converse to the office, this song is never un-relatable. Best served with the volume up and emphatic air-drumming.
3) “Alice”- When I was in eighth grade I obsessed over this music video. Uprooted and sent to Wonderland, Avril re-enacts classic scenes with cameos by the Cheshire Cat, the Mad Hatter, and of course the White Rabbit. I adored the placement of the piano in the woods and the costumes employed for the video. But it’s truly Avril’s vocals that set this song apart from the rest. She belts and goes soprano too, truly showing off the versatility of her range.
2) “Complicated”- The voice memo in the beginning, the melody, the lyrics, the chorus- it’s all gorgeously relatable and the music video is equally as iconic. (“Dude, you wanna crash the mall?”) Other than Avril and her band killing it performing in a skate park, Avril also does a trick jump shot in a basketball hoop in a clothing store. I-C-O-N-I-C. In fact, this video is probably a good how-to video on what not to do in malls: don’t hide Children of the Corn style in clothing racks to scare customers, don’t steal a mall cop’s French fries, and don’t go for a joy ride on those mechanical Animal Riders.
1) “Keep Holding On”- This is it. This is the best emo song of the 2000’s. This song has my favorite bridge out of all Avril Lavigne songs. I also found a fan made music video from 2016 that made me cry. User TheAvrilLavigneProject set the song to various montages from the movie adaptation of “Bridge to Terabithia”. Watch it below to bawl your eyes out.
You can find this playlist here. Leave a comment if there’s anything you would rank differently!
[Other notable Avril songs that didn’t make this list: “Fly”, “I Will Be”, and “Here’s to Never Growing Up”.]