top of page

Just Discovering Lizzy McAlpine? Here’s 10 Songs You Can’t Miss!

By Madeline Keane | 6 July, 2022

If you love the sounds of pop, indie, or alternative singer-songwriters and haven’t listened to Lizzy McAlpine yet, you’re missing out BIG time. A Philadelphia native, McAlpine has risen in the ranks of the music industry, boasting a collaboration and Coachella performance with FINNEAS, as well as having opened for artists including dodie on her “build a problem” tour earlier this year and Coldplay on their “Music of the Spheres” tour. The 22 year-old just released a new album , recently announced her premier tour, AND is featured on a song with Jacob Collier and John Mayer - all within the last 2 months, so now’s as good a time as ever to get listening! As a huge Lizzy McAlpine fan myself, here are 10 of my all time favorite songs from her discography:

10. “Pancakes for Dinner” (Give Me A Minute)

As it was for many other fans, “Pancakes for Dinner” was my introduction to Lizzy McAlpine, and will always hold a special place in my heart. Still her most popular song on Spotify with over 20 million streams, “Pancakes for Dinner” presents the singer struggling with her feelings about a long-time crush and debating with herself whether to reveal their feelings or just keep quiet. This song is positively precious and serves as a fantastic mood booster every time!!

Listen to Give Me A Minute

9. “an ego thing” (five seconds flat)

“an ego thing” is, hands down, the ultimate anger anthem. The instrumentals throughout the song manage to completely capture the essence of aggravation and allow me to fully feel the feelings that I might not be ready to express out loud, this is especially felt through the opening chords of the song. “an ego thing” is not necessarily a song that I can scream out my frustrations to, but the sass in McAlpine’s vocals is perfect for acting out everything I want to say to that one person who’s getting on my nerves.

8. “To The Mountains” (Give Me A Minute)

This song is almost the exact opposite of the last one! Sometimes in life, you just need to be left alone, no matter how much other people may want to be there for you, and this song represents that exceptionally. As its lyrics suggest, “To The Mountains” helps to transport me to “the only place I feel at peace” and block out the rest of the world for a few minutes.

7. “hate to be lame” (five seconds flat)

“hate to be lame” is McAlpine’s collaboration with singer-songwriter and producer FINNEAS, and it was released as the final single prior to her album five seconds flat on April 5, 2022. It also serves as the latest music video in what many fans affectionately refer to as the “Lizzy Cinematic Universe” and was featured in the full “five seconds flat, the film”, a half-hour long short film which incorporates all of the songs from the album. The way I interpret it, the song depicts McAlpine questioning whether or not she is in love with someone who is not good for her, which is a universal experience for many people.

6. “weird” (five seconds flat)

In my humble opinion, “weird” is the most underrated song from five seconds flat. McAlpine partnered with Laura Elliot, who is also a 22 year-old singer-songwriter, to create this eerily beautiful tune, complete with creepy lyrics and all. Right smack in the middle of the album, this song details the haze after a break up, when the reality hasn’t quite sunk in yet but the pain is still very much there. With lyrics including “Maybe I'm weird or maybe I'm off the wall/But maybe it's weirder not to have dreamed at all”, it works to reassure listeners like myself that their feelings are completely normal.

5. “Let Light Be Light” (When the World Stopped Moving: The Live EP)

When I listened to this song, at first it seemed to be a happy one, about keeping someone kind of new, but still special, in your life despite the discomfort of doing so at first. However, through the lyrics of “Let Light Be Light”, I see the uneasiness displayed by McAlpine as an indicator that the relationship she’s discussing is not a good fit for her. She sings lines like, “I know he wants me and that makes me happy / so why do I feel so weird?” and “But my therapist says to just let light be light / so I’m letting him stay around”, which is a good reminder to trust your own gut if something feels off, something that McAlpine failed to do here.

4. “orange show speedway” (five seconds flat)

One of Lizzy’s more upbeat tracks, “orange show speedway” is bound to be my song of the summer! This catchy tune is the perfect addition to any coming of age movie soundtrack or long road trip with friends and the car windows rolled all the way down. This song also, as I found not too long ago, provides the cutest Instagram post caption for a 19th birthday: “my best friends are with me and I feel okay; the last time I was here I was 18” (you can copy me if you want, I don’t mind:)).

3. “ceilings” (five seconds flat)

I swear, this song is my kryptonite. I was lucky enough to hear “ceilings” live during Lizzy McAlpine’s opening act on the dodie tour in February before it was officially released, and to say I bawled my eyes out would not be an exaggeration. To me, the song is about reminiscing about the good memories from a past relationship, only to suddenly remember that those days are long gone. Sheesh, right? Definitely not a happy-go-lucky tune, but still sooooo good and a must listen.

2. “I Knew” (Give Me A Minute)

The plot twist in this song is just INSANE.I’d give anything to get to hear it again for the first time, and be caught off guard all over again. I don’t want to spoil it for anyone who has yet to listen, but let’s just say the lovey-dovey cuteness at the beginning may not be what it seems…

1. “Nothing / Sad N Stuff” (Give Me A Minute)

“ceilings” is such a heart wrenching song for me, and it’s a true killer in the best way. The swell of energy during “I’m alone, I’m alone, I’m alone all at once” is as equally heartbreaking as it is euphoric, which is what makes “Nothing/Sad N Stuff” my #1 Lizzy McAlpine song.

I can’t tell you how many times I changed my mind about which songs should go on the list and even which order to put them in. It may sound silly, but these deliberations were extremely difficult, which speaks to the quality and caliber of McAlpine’s artistry. Despite the sad and highly specific nature of many of these songs, there exists an incredible comfort in knowing that Lizzy McAlpine has not only experienced many of the exact emotions that I have gone through, but was able to harness and translate them into truly transcendent musical works. McAlpine has released so much more than just these ten songs, between her two albums, EP, and SoundCloud voice memo and demo collection, so if you like what you hear, by all means don’t stop here!


bottom of page