2017's election race was long, exciting, exhausting and, at times, infuriating - and it's not over. Our hung Parliament means Winston Peters must now make a call about who he'll go into coalition with, and there's still 15 per cent of the vote to be counted in special votes; we won't know the result of those until October 7.
I don't blame you if you've got election fatigue. Here's a list of songs about the 2017 General Election to help you shake it all off - because there's nothing like dancing as a form of catharsis.
1. Umbrella by Rihanna
Rihanna's timeless pledge to carry a lover through hard times gets right to the root of one of the primary emotions found in politics; empathy. But Umbrella also contains some telling lyrics about the process of forming a coalition government; "Took an oath, I'mma stick it out to the end ... You can stand under my umbrella."
When Labour leader Jacinda Ardern was asked whether she would still form a coalition government with the Greens, with whom Labour had a Memorandum of Understanding, she said; "My word's my bond." We're yet to know just which coalition will end up in power, but Rihanna's anthem is a worthy reminder that larger parties often need to support minor ones - and that election promises are worth keeping.
2. September by Earth Wind & Fire
"Do you remember the 21st night of September?" asks Maurice White in the opening line of September. Kiwis will probably remember September 21, 2017; we were two days away from what seemed to be a very unpredictable election, and now that we're on the other side, we still don't entirely know what's going to happen. What better way to pass time as we wait for Winston Peters' decision than dancing in September?
3. The Louvre by Lorde
There's debate over whether that "youthquake" ever showed up. If it did, The Louvre is the perfect dance banger to match; its lyrics are all about wide-eyed youthfulness, and the chorus features a rumbling, seismic beat that matches Lorde's call: "Broadcast the boom, boom, boom, boom and make 'em all dance to it." Lorde literally broadcasted a boom on Election Day with a lengthy Facebook post encouraging her fellow millennials to vote; if there was a youthquake, this was its anthem.
4. Waterfalls by TLC
Waterfalls is a prime example of how a political song can also be a dance party staple. The song looks at different ways people can fall down the wrong roads - whether that be drug dealing or infidelity - and certain lines reference the Aids crisis ("three letters took him to his final resting place"). The waterfalls, rivers and lakes in the song are metaphorical, but it's interesting to entertain the lyrics on a literal level when looking at New Zealand's water issues, and the way they dominated the election race this year. Whether you agree with Labour's water tax or not, or whether you think the National Party should answer to the contamination of our rivers, Waterfalls is a timely tune.
5. 1+1+1 (It Ain't Two) by K'Lee
There's been much discussion around how "post-truth" politics played a role in the election. Bill English and Steven Joyce furiously defended their claim that Labour's budget contained an $11.7 billion fiscal hole, right down to the final days - despite a consensus from economists that the hole was non-existent. National also pushed the line that Kiwis would be $1000 worse off under Labour - when in fact we don't have that $1000 in the first place.
Regardless of your political leanings, there was undeniably a lot of murkiness in National's mathematics (Steven Joyce even confirmed he dropped out of economics papers during university). K'Lee's 1+1+1 may be about confronting a partner's infidelity, but it's fun to imagine directing its pinnacle lyric at Joyce himself.
6. Irreplaceable by Beyonce
Irreplaceable fits our election in a number of contexts. Firstly, "Jacindamania" sent a whole lot of Kiwis "to the left" - not enough to secure Labour the win, but certainly more than Andrew Little could have mustered before he stepped down. Secondly, we're now waiting on which major party Winston Peters will choose to form a coalition with - but there's a chance he may sway to the left.
Thirdly, one of the biggest shocks of Saturday night was the loss of Marama Fox and Te Ururoa Flavell from Parliament, with every Māori electorate swaying to the left and voting for Labour. Though Beyonce is actually chiding a lover in the song for thinking he's irreplaceable, Fox and Flavell are undeniably irreplaceable, and their absence from Parliament will be felt strongly.
7. Life of the Party by Chelsea Jade
Politics is divisive. Last week I foolishly found myself in a Facebook argument with old friends, and it soon became apparent that arguing over social media is quite possibly the most reductive way to debate politics. Though Chelsea Jade told Undertheradar this irresistible dance track is about being a "natural downer," the opening lyrics ring uncomfortably true when you imagine them from the voice of someone arguing on Facebook; "And I don't know better/but I do know best/I just say whatever/and hold my breath ... Lost in a temper, break down, coalesce".
8. Cut to the Feeling by Carly Rae Jepsen
If you haven't listened to Carly Rae Jepsen's Emotion, I suggest you stop reading this and go do that immediately - it's a joyous pop record that provides the perfect tonic to post-election fatigue. This year, Jepsen returned with the excellent Cut to the Feeling; a high-energy anthem about the desire for honesty ("I wanna cut through the clouds, break the ceiling"), made all the more relevant by our post-truth times. Plus, it's full of relentless positivity.
9. Pull Up The People by MIA
One of the most prominent - and most important - conversations of this election was poverty. Metiria Turei's admission that she committed benefit fraud ultimately resulted in her resignation, but it thrust that conversation into the spotlight and gave a voice to the voiceless. Both Labour and National later pledged to lift 100,000 kids out of poverty.
MIA is one of the most important artists of our time, and her songs have always managed to be both furiously danceable and abrasively political. Pull Up The People, the first track from her excellent debut album Arular, is hooked on a central refrain that remains just as relevant 12 years later; "Pull up the people/Pull up the poor".
10. Anchor Me by The Mutton Birds
Entrenched in the New Zealand psyche, Anchor Me remains one of our greatest political anthems 23 years after its release. Though its lyrics aren't overtly political, it has resurfaced over the years through different causes - Greenpeace released a version in 2005 featuring Goldenhorse's Kirsten Morrell, Che Fu and Anika Moa (among others) to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the Rainbow Warrior bombing, and in 2008, TVNZ used the song in a montage showing Kiwis celebrating the National Party's election win. The latter usage reportedly prompted songwriter Don McGlashan to say he'd "rather have sex with a very ugly crayfish" than be affiliated with the National Party - though he later told the Herald he was "quoted out of context". It would be pretty rock'n'roll of McGlashan if he actually said it, but I suppose I'll take his word for it.