Subscribe to our newsletter

(Credit: Far Out)


Far Out 40: Beat the heat with our cooling summer playlist


Record temperatures, stark warnings, and a spike in ice cream prices have us all needing to cool off for a moment. And remember, in the eternally wise words of Baz Luhrmann: “Wear sunscreen!” The rest of what I say has no grounding beyond the merciful breeze blowing from my speaker.

Henry James may once have written, “Summer afternoon – summer afternoon; to me those have always been the two most beautiful words in the English language,” but Henry James – Henry James never had to work on an overheating laptop amid record-breaking temperatures.

Nevertheless, provided you stay safe and hydrated, there is joy even to be drawn from these mercury-rocketing highs. With the right frozen confectionary, shade, breeze and icy foot bath, music can whisk you off to a place of summery quietude and we’ve collated the songs that will help to get you there.

With all your Mungo Jerry and Beach Boys classics already serving up eternal pool plunges, we’ve tried to go off the usual beaten track of summer classics with a slew of soothing balms from new and old. From the sonic After Sun of Bobby Charles to beauteous new anthems with an aura of swelter by Toro y Moi, if this playlist had a jingle then it would hopefully be an ice cream van jingle.

As the old saying goes, “In summer the song sings itself.” Join in with the party by cooling off with an ice tea and cranking up the playlist below. Enjoy…

Cooling indie summer songs playlist:

  • ‘Sunday Morning’ – The Velvet Underground
  • ‘Foreign Language’ – Flight Facilities
  • ‘It All Feels Right’ – Washed Out
  • ‘Ram On’ – Paul McCartney
  • ‘Twilight in Boston’ – Jonathan Richman
  • ‘Silver Soul’ – Beach House
  • ‘To The End (La Comedia)’ – Blur
  • ‘I Must Be in a Good Place Now’ – Bobby Charles
  • ‘Witchi Tai To’ – Harpers Bizarre
  • ‘Ivy’ – Frank Ocean
  • ‘Out In The Country’ – Natural Child
  • ‘Suddenly’ – Drugdealer, Weyes Blood
  • ‘Cattails’ – Big Thief
  • ‘Make the Road by Walking’ – Menahan Street Band
  • ‘Since I Left You’ – The Avalanches
  • ‘Wan Light’ – Orange Juice
  • ‘Wakin on a Pretty Day’ – Kurt Vile
  • ‘Pish’ – The Brian Jonestown Massacre
  • ‘Coconut Grove’ – The Lovin’ Spoonful
  • ‘Chinese Translation’ – M. Ward
  • ‘Graceland’ – Paul Simon
  • ‘(Sittin’ On) the Dock of the Bay’ – Otis Redding
  • ‘Pure Shores’ – All Saints
  • ‘Everybody’s Talkin’’ – Harry Nilsson
  • ‘Softly’ – Arlo Parks
  • ‘Magazine’ – Toro y Moi, Salami Rose Joe Louis
  • ‘This Life’ – Vampire Weekend
  • ‘Real Love Baby’ – Father John Misty
  • ‘Les Fleurs’ – Minnie Riperton
  • ‘Sense’ – King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard
  • ‘Hear the Rain Come’ – Sidestepper 
  • ‘No Woman’ – Whitney
  • ‘Downtown Train’ – Tom Waits
  • ‘My Lady’s on Fire’ – Ty Segall
  • ‘Summer’ – Angel Olsen
  • ‘Baby’ – Donnie & Joe Emerson
  • ‘The Swimming Song’ – Loudon Wainwright III
  • ‘Didn’t I’ – Darondo
  • ‘Salad Days’ – Mac DeMarco
  • ‘In the Hot Hot Rays’ – Fleet Foxes