You’ve successfully made it to uni and have just moved into a flat with a bunch of soon-to-be best friends and a noticeable lack of fridge space, and now you’re all gearing up for your first nights out as Freshers. And whether you’re off to the campus welcome parties or somewhere further afield, one thing always remains constant: the need for a solid pre-drinks. It’s the time of night for getting to know each other and, inevitably, numerous drinking games, and the right pregame soundtrack can turn a good night into a great one. So, if you do find yourself in possession of the aux cord for the evening, follow these tips to make sure your pre-drink playlist stays fresh.
1) Keep It Upbeat
The first rule of any good pregame playlist is to set the right tempo. While you don’t want the squad to peak before hitting the club, it’s vital that people feel energised and ready for the night ahead, so save those broken-heart ballads for the 4am comedown. Kick things off with an indie classic like the Red Hot Chili Peppers’ ‘Can’t Stop’ to get the party atmosphere going, and if you find that people need a bit of encouragement to start enjoying themselves, school disco classic ‘Hey Ya!’ by OutKast goes a long way. Seriously, it’s amazing how hearing André 3000 shout “One, two, three, uh!” is all it takes for most people to instantly become up for a good time.
2) Play It Cool
Everyone, and I mean everyone, has their guilty pleasures when it comes to music. But it takes a very brave person to lead with them in a room full of new people, and while you might think that ‘5, 6, 7, 8’ by Steps is the pinnacle of music, it can be a tough sell for a Freshers night out. Instead, put on a few current summer hits like Dua Lipa’s ‘New Rules’ and Calvin Harris’ irresistibly funky ‘Slide’ to prove to everyone that your finger is on the pulse of modern pop. By the time you hit week 3, you’ll probably have found at least one other flatmate who loves a bit of early noughties cheese anyway, but it’s always best to play it safe early on.
And, if all else fails, just put ‘Despacito’ on and have done with it…
3) Maintain The Variety
2016 was the year that grime broke into the mainstream, and so far, 2017 has seen something of a resurgence in all things rap. But although the temptation to hit shuffle on Spotify’s RapCaviar playlist might be strong, the best pregame soundtrack always features something for everyone to enjoy. Kendrick Lamar’s ‘HUMBLE’ absolutely blew up when it was released, as did the entire album, but five Kendrick songs in a row runs the risk of killing everyone’s vibe. Keep it diverse and flowing by working in the infectious groove of Portugal The Man’s ‘Feel It Still’ alongside The Jackson 5’s Motown classic ‘I Want You Back’, all the while being sure to avoid any dramatic and jarring genre shifts which throw everyone out of the zone.
5) Please The Crowd
Finally, and most importantly, keep everyone happy. The one rule that supersedes all else, it can sometimes mean playing things which you aren’t a huge fan of because you know that everyone else is. Yes it’s chronically overplayed, but Ed Sheeran’s ‘Shape of You’ will delight far more than it dismays, as will pretty much anything by Beyoncé, while the not-so-secret weapon is always Toploader’s ‘Dancing in The Moonlight’, a song which I’m convinced is unconditionally loved by everyone who has ever heard it. And, if all else fails, just put ‘Despacito’ on and have done with it.
Still stuck? Check out The Boar Music’s very own Fresher’s Playlist on Spotify to get your night out moving in the right direction.