I am not really a playlist person. I like albums. I like the beginning-to-end straightforwardness of an album. But over December, YouTube told me to listen to this playlist called ‘Japanese soft indie/rock, that would be in Goodnight Punpun’s playlist’ (Goodnight Punpun is a manga i had to google). In the past few weeks it has had 1 million views and I think I am half of them.

Best vibes, I’ve been writing loads to it, dancing, humming it, mumbling lyrics to myself in mangled Japanese because I’ve listened to it that many times I think I can speak Japanese now. I LOVE IT. And I love the wider trend it is a part of. That title – the titles these playlist-creators come up with!

‘you’re inside monet paintings’

‘you’re studying in a secret library’

or this one, ‘recalling a christmas that never happened’ wow ok

they’re all evocative and active, and they are breaking me away from my album-listening. I am cycling through them, wondering what environment I want a playlist to create around me. It is a beautiful part of YouTube. I was chatting to a friend recently who said ‘I think as a little kid i always imagined having my own little tv that would go everywhere with me and i could watch in bed and thats what youtube is like for me.’ I’m tuning into these playlists every day now, feeling quite led by them – in a nice way. Guided, happy. They’re like mood lighting while I write.