Her Campus Logo Her Campus Logo
Guy Red Guitar Plants Outside Bench Summer
Charlotte Reader / Her Campus

HELP!! I am going through my middle school emo phase again. I should not be reverting to middle school-era emo music – I should be evolving to pining adult emo at the very least. Yet here I am screaming in my car the lyrics to songs I swore off in 7th grade.  From My Chemical Romance to All Time Low, I am diving head first into a pool of worn-off black nail polish and the glory days of Hot Topic: you know, when you could barely see in the store because the lights were dim and facing the trim between the wall and ceiling. 

Emo Phase is That You?  takes you through the early teen angst of middle school and brings you a twisted comfort in the days you were probably wearing all black and learning how to do eyeliner like Gerard Way. 

Dear Maria, Count Me In-All Time Low

    My introduction to Pop-Punk. All Time Low is the reason my phase survived seventh grade. The upbeat tones of their music made those bonding moments with my younger cousin, whose taste in music was taking a striking turn away from mine, all the more memorable. Dear Maria, Count Me In starts with Alex Gaskarthʻs vocals immediately capturing your attention, which is then followed by a short but impactful guitar riff. The songʻs chorus brings you in with catchy lyrical timing and leads to every verse after with enough time to breathe between the lyrics that your 12-year-old lungs could continue attempting to keep up with Alex. 

Brain Stew-Green Day

    A classic and publicly acceptable emo anthem that is recognizable in its first 10 seconds. If this track were a human, it would be someone on three tabs of acid (Disclaimer: I am not advocating the use of recreational drugs here) too couched to feel a slap in the face, contemplating the reason behind existing, and trying to understand why he canʻt feel his mouth. The sporadic guitar sparks the listeners attention in a pattern creating an even flow of consciousness following the lyrics. The atmosphere given off by Brain Stew is a great way to break up intense headbanging or a simple cleansing of the musical palette. 

I Miss You-blink-182

    Cut to 8th grade Reagan talking to a math teacher she wished she had had. Walking out of school that day we talked about Halloween and then at the same time brought up the lyric “Weʻll have Halloween on Christmas” as she talked about her yearly traditions with her husband. Probably the coolest moment middle school me could have ever asked to have with a teacher. I Miss You makes the listener feel all of the sadness, nostalgia, and pain driven home by Markʻs aching vocals crying out about hating the person you love and the effects of depression on a relationship. 

Dirty Little Secret-The All-American Rejects

    Picture this: Bulldog Bash 2018, the Friday night before State was to play the University of Florida. More importantly, this meant that our previous head coach, Dan Mullen, had dared to show his face in this town after attempting to steal* not only Stateʻs slogan, “This is our State”, but also our beloved third quarter song, Donʻt Stop Believing-Journey. During a lull in the All-American Rejectsʻ set, a sole member of the crowd began chanting, “Fuck Dan Mullen”. The chant caught so quickly and forcefully that Tyson dramatically grabbed his mic and started chanting with the crowd. To say that moment was magical is an understatement, it was a validation of everything the football-loving student body had felt all week leading up to the arrival of the Florida team. It was a connection to everyone on the street: strangers, friends, family, alumni… we were all there in the moment, together, as a whole expressing our emotions of betrayal and frustration. There is nothing I can say about the song itself that could top the emotions we all felt that night in the aftermath of hearing that song.

Helena-My Chemical Romance

    The placement of the song in the playlist is no coincidence. Before their December 2019 concert, My Chemical Romanceʻs last live performance together was on Saturday May 19th, 2012, at Bamboozle fest in a chance slot when blink-182 had to pull out due to a memberʻs emergency surgery. That night, the last MCR lyric Gerard Way sang was “So long and goodnight. So long and goodnight…” the following year, the band broke up. This trivial fact broke the heart of thousands once it was finally realized by the fanbase. Helena has since been used by the fans as an ending song paying respects to the (previously) final performance. This ballad spins the listener into an eerie funeral and the final goodbye to your lover while taking in the real-life consequences of their death: the broken-hearted friends and family members and a suicidal and grieving you. 


Playlist link:  https://open.spotify.com/playlist/0B13EKWZ23ZuptL8r0Pt1a?si=zPhuynAFQ0axe4AG_I1Jpw



–Reagan Thornley



An “*” shows that a term is being used in its loosest form.



Hi, my name is Reagan Thornley! :) I am currently a Business Administration student at Mississippi State with a completed minor in Political Science. Outside of Her Campus, I write for Juiced! Zine (https://juiceourmagazine.wixsite.com/mysite) and Crates Music Blog. Feel free to email me at [email protected] with upcoming music events, artist/band suggestions, and travel tips and suggestions(especially food)! P.S. Donʻt forget to follow my adventures on my Instagram @lady_gk_
Similar Reads👯‍♀️