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Released: 2018

Features: Julia Michaels

“I Miss You” by Clean Bandit featuring Julia Michaels grapples with longing and wishes for a time that’s past— the heartfelt ache of an ended relationship. The track is a truly poignant exploration of regret, nostalgia, and the emotional turmoil that accompanies the end of a meaningful connection.

Let’s break it down, shall we? The song opens up with Julia Michaels singing, “I know you’re out in Cabo / Hanging with your brother / Wishin’ that I was your bottle.” Here, we see the singer wishfully thinking about the subject of the song, presumably an ex-lover – she yearns to be as close to him as a beverage he may be sipping – a clever way of expressing longing.

Michaels reveals that the breakup is a secret kept even from the guy’s parents to avoid offending them, which shows the depth and significance of the relationship in question. It’s not your run-of-the-mill amateur fling – serious feelings are involved here.

In the chorus, “I miss you, yeah, I miss you / Though I’m tryin’ not to right now”, the inner conflict is clear. There’s a desire to move on, but the past holds a significant pull. Who hasn’t been there, right? This is a textbook case of post-breakup struggle, and Michaels captures it with empathetic lyricism.

Onto the second verse, “You weren’t a fan of pictures / So I hardly ever took ’em / Got them saved in my mind from the bedroom.” This gives us a glimpse of their past relationship’s intimate aspects and further reinforces the depth of the connection they shared.

The song then returns to the chorus and then onto a bridge, where Michaels reveals that she’s saved all their past texts, “Just to remind myself of how good it is / Or was.” Now that’s a modern expression of holding onto memories, ain’t it?

She ends the song on a heartfelt note, admitting to missing her ex and although she’s trying not to, she can’t help it. It’s an honest, raw conclusion to a visceral exploration of longing.

Overall, with “I Miss You,” Clean Bandit and Julia Michaels have encapsulated the crippling nostalgia that follows a significant breakup. Using everyday lingo and relatable scenarios, they’ve managed to make a complex emotional journey tangible and accessible. Now, that’s good pop.

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