Make Me Wanna Die

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"Make Me Wanna Die"
The Pretty Reckless - Make Me Wanna Die.png
Single by The Pretty Reckless
from the album The Pretty Reckless and Light Me Up
B-side "Zombie"
Released April 14, 2010 (2010-04-14)
Format Digital download
Studio House of Loud Studios
(Elmwood Park, New Jersey)
Length 3:54
Label Interscope
Producer(s) Kato Khandwala
The Pretty Reckless singles chronology
"Make Me Wanna Die"
"Miss Nothing"
"Make Me Wanna Die"
"Miss Nothing"
Audio sample

"Make Me Wanna Die" is a song by American rock band The Pretty Reckless from their eponymous debut extended play (2010) and their debut studio album, Light Me Up (2010). The song was written by Taylor Momsen, Ben Phillips, and Kato Khandwala, and produced by the latter. It was released on April 14, 2010 as the lead single from both the EP and the album.

Background and release[edit]

"Make Me Wanna Die" was the first song written for Light Me Up.[1] Momsen has described it as a "tragic love song",[2] stating it was "focused on Romeo and Juliet and a passionate love that might've not been appropriate."[3]

Critical reception[edit]

Nick Levine of Digital Spy rated "Make Me Wanna Die" four out of five stars, stating the song "is actually a bit of a blast. To be precise, it's a great big slab of angsty grunge-pop with a screechalong chorus, some nice jaggedy guitar riffs and production as glossy/grungey as its singer's peroxide blonde dye job."[4] Chris Roberts of BBC Music felt that the song "packs every emo-romantic cliché into its punchy pat structure".[5]

Music videos[edit]

A promotional video for "Make Me Wanna Die", known as the "viral version", was directed by Patrick Dwyer and released on May 11, 2010.[6][7] The video, shot at the Hotel Chelsea in New York City, features live performance clips and backstage footage of the band.[7]

The official music video, directed by Meiert Avis and Chris LeDoux, was filmed in Brooklyn, New York City in March 2010.[8] Momsen explained the concept of the video to MTV News, saying, "[T]o try and emulate kind of an epic-y song that's almost like a film, it was a challenge to come up with a treatment. So I guess we sort of decided to make it like a death march. You can't live anymore in this world, and you're on your way to your death, and you're seeing everything you're passing, and stripping yourself of your belongings on your way to your grave."[9] According to Momsen, the video was "held up in legal for a long time because I was 16 when we shot that. We couldn't release it because, yes, I actually got naked."[10] The video was ultimately released on September 15, 2010 to the iTunes Store in the US.[11]

In film and television[edit]

The track plays during the end credits of the 2010 film Kick-Ass,[12] and is also included on its soundtrack.[13] In August 2010, the song was used in a trailer for the second season of The Vampire Diaries.[14] "Make Me Wanna Die" was featured in the ninth episode of the fourth season of Gossip Girl, "The Witches of Bushwick", which aired on November 5, 2010. It was playing when Jenny (Momsen's character), while impersonating Serena, pulls the curtain down to reveal Blair and Chuck talking together. The track was also used during the opening segment of the 2011 Victoria's Secret Fashion Show.[15] The song also appeared on the March 30, 2017 episode of Supernatural, titled "Ladies Drink Free".[16]

Track listing[edit]

  • Digital download[17]
  1. "Make Me Wanna Die" – 3:54
  2. "Zombie" – 3:07

Credits and personnel[edit]

Credits adapted from the liner notes of Light Me Up.[18]

The Pretty Reckless

  • Taylor Momsen – vocals, songwriting
  • Ben Phillips – backing vocals, guitar, songwriting
  • Jamie Perkins – drums

Additional personnel

  • John Bender – backing vocals
  • Jon Cohan – drum technician
  • Jonathan Dinklage – violin
  • Dave Eggar – cello
  • Kato Khandwala – bass, engineering, guitar, mixing, production, programming, songwriting, string arrangement
  • Dan Korneff – mix engineering
  • Michael "Mitch" Milan – assistant engineering


Chart (2010–11) Peak
Australia (ARIA)[19] 61
Europe (European Hot 100 Singles)[20] 57
Scotland (Official Charts Company)[21] 10
UK Singles (Official Charts Company)[22] 16
UK Rock and Metal (Official Charts Company)[23] 1
US Hot Singles Sales (Billboard)[24] 4
US Rock Digital Songs (Billboard)[25] 18

Release history[edit]

Region Date Format Label Ref.
United Kingdom April 14, 2010 Contemporary hit radio Polydor [26]
Ireland May 13, 2010 Digital download [27]
United Kingdom May 16, 2010 [28]
Australia June 11, 2010 Digital download (one track) Universal [29]
July 9, 2010 Digital download (two tracks) [30]


  1. ^ Vena, Jocelyn (April 13, 2011). "Taylor Momsen Calls Pretty Reckless' Light Me Up 'Honest'". MTV News. Retrieved June 2, 2017. 
  2. ^ Stack, Tim (April 22, 2010). "'Gossip Girl' star Taylor Momsen talks her debut single, upcoming album, and why she doesn't like pants". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved May 21, 2017. 
  3. ^ Wise, Lauren (October 21, 2016). "Taylor Momsen of The Pretty Reckless Believes It's Unfair to the Listener to Explain Songs". Phoenix New Times. Retrieved May 21, 2017. 
  4. ^ Levine, Nick (May 17, 2010). "The Pretty Reckless: 'Make Me Wanna Die'". Digital Spy. Retrieved June 9, 2014. 
  5. ^ Roberts, Chris (August 26, 2010). "Review of The Pretty Reckless – Light Me Up". BBC Music. Retrieved June 9, 2014. 
  6. ^ "The Pretty Reckless – "Make Me Wanna Die (Viral Version)"". MTV. May 14, 2010. Retrieved June 9, 2014. 
  7. ^ a b "Gossip Girl's Taylor Momsen premieres new clip for "Make Me Wanna Die"". May 11, 2010. Retrieved June 9, 2014. 
  8. ^ Avis, Meiert (April 10, 2012). "The Pretty Reckless "Make Me Wanna Die"". Retrieved June 9, 2014. 
  9. ^ Montgomery, James (May 4, 2010). "Taylor Momsen Says Pretty Reckless Album Is 'Sex, Drugs And Religion'". MTV News. Retrieved June 9, 2014. 
  10. ^ Hoby, Hermione (December 8, 2010). "Taylor Momsen: From Grinch to grunge". The Guardian. Retrieved June 9, 2014. 
  11. ^ "Music Videos – Make Me Wanna Die by The Pretty Reckless". iTunes Store (US). Retrieved June 9, 2014. 
  12. ^ Falconer, Daniel (December 11, 2012). "7 of the Best Bands in the Business". Female First. Retrieved June 9, 2014. 
  13. ^ "Kick-Ass – Original Soundtrack". AllMusic. Retrieved June 9, 2014. 
  14. ^ "WATCH! Nina Dobrev Gets Hot & Heavy With Paul Wesley & Ian Somerhalder In 'Vampire Diaries' Season Two!". Hollywood Life. August 19, 2010. Retrieved June 9, 2014. 
  15. ^ "The Pretty Reckless' "Make Me Wanna Die" Makes A Splash On iTunes After Victoria's Secret Fashion Show". Icon vs. Icon. December 5, 2011. Retrieved June 9, 2014. 
  16. ^ Krupa, Jessy (April 3, 2017). "Supernatural's 'Ladies Drink Free' Is a Dull Pit Stop on the Road to the Finalé". PopMatters. Retrieved May 20, 2017. 
  17. ^ "Make Me Wanna Die – Single by The Pretty Reckless". iTunes Store (GB). Retrieved June 9, 2014. 
  18. ^ Light Me Up (CD liner notes). The Pretty Reckless. Interscope Records. 2011. B0015304-02. 
  19. ^ "ARIA Top 100 Singles – Week Commencing 26th July 2010" ARIA Top 100 Singles. National Library of Australia. Retrieved June 9, 2014.
  20. ^ "European Hot 100: Week of June 05, 2010". Billboard. Archived from the original on March 30, 2011. Retrieved September 8, 2015. 
  21. ^ "Official Scottish Singles Sales Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved June 9, 2014.
  22. ^ "Pretty Reckless: Artist Chart History". Official Charts Company. Retrieved September 8, 2015.
  23. ^ "Official Rock & Metal Singles Chart Top 40". Official Charts Company. Retrieved September 8, 2015.
  24. ^ "Search results: Hot Singles Sales". Billboard. Retrieved June 9, 2014. 
  25. ^ "The Pretty Reckless – Chart history: Rock Digital Songs". Billboard. Retrieved January 11, 2016. 
  26. ^ "Playlist". BBC Radio 1. Archived from the original on April 19, 2010. Retrieved June 9, 2014. 
  27. ^ "Make Me Wanna Die (2010) | The Pretty Reckless". 7digital (IE). Archived from the original on May 2, 2014. Retrieved June 9, 2014. 
  28. ^ "Make Me Wanna Die: The Pretty Reckless: MP3 Downloads". Archived from the original on July 15, 2014. Retrieved June 9, 2014. 
  29. ^ "The Pretty Reckless Store – Make Me Wanna Die". Getmusic (AU). Archived from the original on April 19, 2012. Retrieved June 9, 2014. 
  30. ^ "The Pretty Reckless Store – Make Me Wanna Die". Getmusic (AU). Archived from the original on April 19, 2012. Retrieved June 9, 2014. 

External links[edit]