“Breaking up is hard to do” sang Neil Sedaka on a song that has since been covered by everyone from The Carpenters to Nick Carter. But relationship breakdowns have also provided rich fodder for pop music. Recently, Chris Martin revealed that Coldplay’s latest album, Ghost Stories was heavily influenced by the end of his marriage to Gwyneth Paltrow (the pair issued a joint statement announcing their “conscious uncoupling” in March). And Coldplay join a healthy musical tradition of albums that are soaked in the bitter tears and regret of break ups: here are 10 of the best.
Dylan rejected the critics’ autobiographical take on his 15th studio album, written and recorded in 1974 after the demise of his marriage to Sara Lownds. He has however described it as a record borne out of pain − and with the unabashed vitriol of Idiot Wind (“You’re an idiot babe/ It’s a wonder that you still know how to breathe”), the resignation of You’re Gonna Make Me Lonesome When You Go and the longing of If You See Her, Say Hello (“And though our separation, pierced me to the heart/She still lives inside of me, we’ve never been apart”) – pain and pithy putdowns are clearly present.