The news site of Glenbrook South High School.

The Oracle

The news site of Glenbrook South High School.

The Oracle

The news site of Glenbrook South High School.

The Oracle

Find Stories and More:

The Best Singles of 2023: 8th grade guest-writers break down their favorite songs this year

“Cruel Summer” by Taylor Swift

Review by Alina Saddal

Imagine that it is summertime. it’s 87 degrees outside, you’re in your car with the windows down, and you crank up the radio. The song “Cruel Summer” by Taylor Swift is coming on. 

“Cruel Summer” is a pop song written by Taylor Swift, and released in August 2019. The song has been called the ‘Song of the Summer’ because of the upbeat melody, catchy lyrics, and mood of the song. It has gained a lot of popularity from the app TikTok, which has made it rise to number 1 on the Billboard Global 200 Chart.

The song ‘Cruel Summer’ is about the feeling of a summer romance. People may listen to this song for multiple reasons. Maybe they are in a summer fling and want to listen to their feelings being sung, maybe they like the lyrics, or maybe they just like the vibe. Some of the best lyrics are “Every night that summer just to seal my fate / And I screamed for whatever it’s worth / “I love you,” ain’t that the worst thing you ever heard? / He looks up grinning like a devil”. These lyrics are the best and most iconic because it’s the part of the song that makes you want to scream out the lyrics, dance, and seize the summer.


“Broken Clocks” by SZA

Review by Ana Sinelnikov

Imagine getting into your car after a long, tiring day at school. You’re socially exhausted and feel like your friends are annoyed by you. But then, the vocals of the beginning of SZA’s song “Broken Clocks” come on. When you listen to this song, you feel a sense of relief and relaxation. The beat is calming but also has just the right amount of energy to keep you pushing through the day. It’s great to listen to when you need the motivation to do homework, with lyrics like “Better day than yesterday” and “I just take it day by day”. I feel like many teenagers out there can relate to these words; I know I do when I have a rough week.


“The Song with 5 Names” by Will Wood and the Tapeworms

Review by Ella Friedman

I first discovered the band Will Wood and the Tapeworms in 2021. Although “The Song with 5 Names, a.k.a. soapbox tao, a.k.a. checkmate atheists! a.k.a. neospace government, a.k.a. you can never know” is often outshined by “Hand me my shovel, I’m going in!” and “Dr. Sunshine is Dead”, I found it to be the most impactful. There are plenty of moving instrumental parts throughout the song, and the band executes them with the utmost perfection. The avant-garde/klezmer combination is very satisfying, and it is an absolute wonder to listen to. It feels as if I found myself lost in the woods in the middle of a midnight thunderstorm when all of a sudden I get hit in the back of the head and tied to the trunk of a tree. When I finally wake up, I’m surrounded by men wearing silk Athenian loincloths running around the tree whilst their lamb-headed leader approaches me slowly, singing this song. 

The lyrics may be hard to decipher at first listen, but I believe that they are the song’s greatest aspect. Overall, the song means that in our lifetime, we can never truly know the answers to the universe’s questions and that truth is so uncertain. Before I found this song, I was using loud music to drown my frustrations out. But after, I left a changed person, having astral-projected and come back to Earth in 4 minutes and 28 seconds. Will Wood is a lyrical genius, and I will stand with that until I die.


“R U Mine” by Arctic Monkeys

Review by Estelle Jang

“R U Mine” is an upbeat and powerful song that is something almost everyone can relate to, whether you have been in a relationship or not. It is perfect for blasting in the car or even just chilling in your room.

The Arctic Monkeys start by saying they are “a puppet on a string,” relating to the many people who feel like they are trapped in a loop of life and can’t control what happens next. Throughout the song they repeat the phrase, “I go crazy ‘cuz here isn’t where I wanna be,” repeating the theme of not being able to control life. More specifically, the song hones in on the idea of being stuck in a relationship while thinking of another person. However, even as someone who has never been in a relationship, I can still relate many parts of the song to other prospects in life. This popular indie song became famous for the reason that it is relatable and can be played anywhere.


“The Archer” by Taylor Swift

Review by Evelyn Junia

Pushing someone away when you get too close; laughing with that one person one day; and the next, locking yourself in a room and ignoring all their calls. Letting your guard down can make you push someone away, and a person who has a deep understanding of that is Taylor Swift. Crying in your room, cuddled up in a blanket on your bed, with “The Archer” on repeat on Spotify, listening to the bridge until you get sick of it, makes you understand the deep feeling of isolation after sharing too much time. This feeling is best exemplified in the lyric, “Who could ever leave me, darling, but who could stay?”.

The comfort of this song helps you realize that you are not alone. The softness of Swift’s voice leads into a depressing song that somehow makes you feel seen. Her warm lyrics envelop you in a cloud of thought, making you wonder why you haven’t listened to the song before. When listening to “The Archer,” relating to music has never been easier.


“You Belong With Me” by Taylor Swift

Review by Hana Ciric

Alone, in your bed, screaming these lyrics while it’s raining, crying, and thinking about him and her. “You Belong With Me” by Taylor Swift is a very meaningful song because it’s about Swift’s childhood crush, whom she believes should be with someone else. Throughout the entire song, they communicate by writing in notebooks, and as she’s writing “I like you,” he closes his blinds, missing her message. After dating the popular girl, he finally realizes who she is and what a good person she is. At their high school dance, they finally show each other what they have been hiding from each other in their notebooks. In a romantic turn of events, they both show “I like you” written and share a lovely kiss.

“You Belong With Me” is a very good song. It is a strong song because of memorable song beats, making sure it’s a song everyone will remember. 


“Think Before He Cheats” by Carrie Underwood

Review by Kiera Egan

The feeling of empowerment you get when you listen to “Think Before He Cheats” by Carrie Underwood is wild! This masterpiece of a country song is from her Some Hearts album, released when she was only 22 years old. “Think Before He Cheats” is her biggest song from the album. Once you listen to this 2005 masterpiece, you’ll understand why. 

From personal experience, the best time to listen to “Think Before He Cheats” by Underwood is when you are in the car with your friends, mom, or siblings. You know that by the end of the car ride, your voices will be gone, and you will all be smiling from ear to ear, laughing with each other. Even if you haven’t necessarily gotten cheated on, it doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the song. For example, lyrics like “I dug my key into the side of his pretty little souped-up four-wheel drive and carved my name into his leather seats” might make you think that you need to have been cheated on to enjoy this song. But trust me, you don’t. I love to listen to this song when I’m mad. Whenever I need to go to a rage room and destroy everything, I turn this song on and belt my heart out. Also, the song is just fun to listen to in general. The lyrics are easy to learn, and it’s a great karaoke song. The rhythm and flow of the song are also perfect. It tickles my brain every time I play it. I recommend this song to anyone who loves a good sing-along song and enjoys a good country song. It is written with powerful lyrics and a tune that will get stuck in your head.


“See You Again” by Tyler The Creator ft. Kali Uchis

Review by Rishabh Shah

Have you ever felt the emotion of a song? When I listened to “See You Again” by Tyler The Creator ft. Kali Uchis, I did. This song explores his love for a woman and dreams about a girl he always liked, while he is in the army. At the start of the song, Tyler the Creator says, “You live in my dream state” and “You’re the one that’s always running through my daydreams.” This shows that he dreams about this woman all the time.

He also talks about his love for her in the line, “Cupid hit me with precision, I wonder if you look both ways when you cross my mind.” The “Cupid hit me with an arrow” line refers to Cupid’s bow when one gets hit, they fall in love. The line demonstrates the love the narrator feels for the woman. She, vocalized by Kali Uchis, reciprocates these feelings when she says “Can I get a kiss and can you make it last forever.” This shows that she cares about him and wants to see him. Tyler the Creator says the word “Okay” because he agrees but does not know how to say it.


“Sunflower” by Post Malone and Swae Lee

Review by Zoya Mirza

Sunflower” by Post Malone and Swae Lee is the perfect song for everyone’s playlist. This masterpiece has just the right amount of hip-hop and rap. While hearing this song in Spider-Man Across the Spider-Verse in the theater, it is difficult for the entire audience not to sing along. 

The song is crafted with an uplifting beat to encapture the listener whether it is blasting at your friend’s party or through your headphones in the middle of homework. The words  Every time I’m walkin’ out I can hear you tellin’ me to turn around. Fightin’ for my trust and you won’t back down. Even if we gotta risk it all right now” are relatable for anything one’s life: school, friendships, or home life. The song “Sunflower” will be one you always want to listen to.

Leave a Comment
More to Discover

Comments (0)

The Oracle intends for this area to be used to foster healthy, thought-provoking discussion. Comments are expected to adhere to our standards and to be respectful and constructive. As such, we do not permit the use of profanity, foul language, personal attacks, or the use of language that might be interpreted as libelous. Comments are reviewed and must be approved by a moderator to ensure that they meet these standards. The Oracle does not allow anonymous comments, and The Oracle requires a valid email address. The email address will not be displayed but will be used to confirm your comments.
All The Oracle Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *