Arts, iEdit

iEdit: Rachel Phelan Curates a Predictably Unpredictable Punk and Pop Playlist


I associate a number of things with layout editor Rachel Phelan: crocheted cardigans, a cool pair of sunglasses, and the tree-lined highways of New Hampshire. Then, there are the off-hand comments about frogs, a brutal honesty that never fails to be funny, and my inability to anticipate the next thing that’s going to come out of her mouth. In a good way.  

I should have assumed that her music taste would be the same. 

Rachel proudly embraces the “tasteful” and the “tasteless” in her iEdit, unafraid to mesh classic legends with pop superstars like Daft Punk and Taylor Swift. She kicks off her 10-song symphony with the sinister track “Because” by The Beatles and Peach Pit’s “Figure 8,” the latter an indie anthem perfect for the rolling credits at the end of a rom-com. 

This playlist would surely appeal to both judgmental 70-year-olds clutching their record players and angsty teenagers hung up on their first relationship and clinging to the punk guitar riffs of Beach Bunny’s “Entropy.” And any listener—young or old—will end up dancing to Daft Punk’s “Digital Love,” a five-minute-long, disco-esque portrait of a dance floor romance. 

Passion Pit’s “Carried Away” and Swift’s “Sparks Fly,” are two bright pop punches on the playlist. What follows are two angstier tracks: “Pale Beneath the Tan (Squeeze)” by The Front Bottoms and “104 Degrees” by Slaughter Beach, Dog. 

Both have loud guitars, heavy drums, and eager vocals detailing the first and final days of a romantic relationship. 

The tracklist ends with the clean guitar strums of The Greeting Committee. “Hands Down” is a calmer track compared to its predecessors, but it maintains the indie-punk-pop theme of the entire playlist. It fittingly ends with a proclamation of love and lead vocalist Addie Sartino’s promise to the listener that she will show you her love, whether you’re prepared for it or not.

In many ways, this iEdit resembles its creator: unpretentious, unpredictable, thoughtful, and bold. Unafraid to embrace something different, but reverent to the legends that shaped the spaces she now occupies. 

Most importantly, it doesn’t take the inevitable highs and lows of life too seriously—just like Rachel, who, for the cover of her self-proclaimed “dad vibes” Spotify playlist, chose a picture of a frog shouldering a black, amphibian-sized electric guitar. 

October 4, 2022
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