Songs That Make You Go "wow" Every Time

There are some songs I can hear over and over again, and they just continue to amaze me. These songs usually have some varying combination of masterful technique, amazing emotion, and unexplainable energy. I’ve decided to list the ones I can think of off the top of my head, and I encourage you guys to do the same… lets get a nice playlist going of the most (subjectively) awe inspiring songs of all time (in our minds at least).

I don’t take this list lightly by the way, these tracks seriously move me every time I hear them. It is not however, a definitive list… it simply encompasses the ones I can think of at this very moment … and my taste in music is quite different than most, so prepare to LOL:

Smashing Pumpkins - Thru the Eyes of Ruby
This is by far the best song I’ve ever heard. Only the album version does it for me… the live versions I’ve heard pale in comparison. Though the rest of the tracks on Melon Collie are great, this one is incalculable epic win.

Björk - Jòga
The album version of this, from Homogenic, is one of the most beautiful tracks I’ve ever heard. It comes in at a very close second, right behind Thru the Eyes of Ruby. The chaotic electronics contrasted with the beautiful vocals and orchestrals are what make this track… which is why the live versions just don’t cut it, as they omit the chaos.

Sarah McLachlan - Ice (Freedom Sessions version)
Chilling alternate version of a previously released track… according to the album liner, she didn’t like her own electric guitar work on this one… I personally can’t stop listening to it.

Sarah McLachlan - Black
While we’re on Sarah McLachlan, this track from her 1991 album Solace blows me away. Took me forever to notice it, but it’s one I’ll never be able to forget. As with most of these, just give it a listen. Make sure it’s from the right album!! :P

Venetian Snares - Epidermis
My favorite Venetian Snares track of all time. I kept wondering why the heck the vocal track sounded so familiar (and filled with win) until I realized one day that this was indeed a remix of a Siouxsie and the Banshees song called “Skin”. Gothrock + breakcore = Please excuse me good sir, I just came in my pants.

System of a Down - Vicinity of Obscenity
Raw energy… odd time signatures… nonsequitur vocals… general wackiness… tight fucking band… pure pwnage.

Gerard McMann - Cry Little Sister (Lost Boys soundtrack)
This guy made one of the most amazing gothic synth-rock ballads in existence without even knowing it… and now with the Lost Boys sequel, he’s trying to revive his dead career as “G-Tom-Mac”, and he’s slaughtered this song beyond all recognition. The original still stands up though… despite its questionable (incestuous?) lyrics… and for some reason, it moves me every time I hear it. The Blutengel version, however, is just plain funny.

Big Wreck - Ladylike
Big Wreck were quite the talented crew… and as much as That Song used to send chills down my spine… this one does even more. The lyrics are a bit lower on my list, mainly because I can’t quite identify with them… but the singing and instrumentation is amazing.

Current Value - Dark Rain
This is the best Drum ‘n’ Bass can get without turning into full-on breakcore… very addictive. I swear, he added some kind of audio transmitted crack to this.

Bangles - Hazy Shade of Winter
Oh yes… I went there. If you listen to one Bangles song in your lifetime, make it this one.

Beck - Girl
If the NES styled intro doesn’t get you, the lyrics will. I’m serious… look them up, then listen whilst reading them. Your mind will be blown, guaranteed.

Cake - Arco Arena
My favorite cake song of all time just happens to be an instrumental, go figure. There’s something amazing about this track. Dunno what it is, but it

The Cure - A Forest
The Cure just generally wows me… but this one consistently wows me more than most. This is quite the sonic journey… and it just reeks of Cure-like fantasy.
A Forest? A Masterpiece.

Depeche Mode - Behind The Wheel
Most people would put Personal Jesus at the top of their Depeche Mode favorites… but not I. No sir, I do not ;) This is one track that has some decent live versions floating around that are well worth the listen if you like the original.

DJ Food - Break (Kaleidoscope)
A very unique track, though perhaps a tad bit hard to find. DJ Food is a series of albums mixed by various electronic musicians… mostly meant as inspiration to other musicians. This track is, particularly, is food for my ears.

a-ha - The Sun Always Shines On TV
I never really liked a-ha. That is, until I heard this song. I love this song. Should I listen to more a-ha now? Do I really need to?

Hole - Gold Dust Woman
I don’t know what it is about this track, but I love it… significantly more than the original.

Jakalope - Feel It
Can you feel it? I most definitely can. Jakalope is a one of a kind act… and this song evokes a very unique imagery.

Michael Hutchence - The Passenger
Another cover that I love much more than the original. This song is from the Batman Forever soundtrack. I loved the movie too. I’m an oddball.

Neil Young - Hey Hey My My (Into The Black)
Wow. Just… Wow.

Portishead - Glory Box (Mudflap Mix)
Best Portishead remix ever… Simply outstanding.

Squirrel Nut Zippers - Hell
This song educates you about your inevitable eternal fate. Deal with it so we can get on with living a pleasant life please.

The Deadlines - Vampires in Love
How come this band never made it anywhere? This song is amazing!

Mars Volta - Frances the Mute
The entire fucking album (not the single by the same name)… this is an album you must listen to from start to finish. I can’t single out one track, because they don’t have the same impact without the rest of the album.

Snake River Conspiracy - Lovesong
Another cover that kicks ass. Don’t expect a rehash of the Cure version ;)

They Might Be Giants - A Self Called Nowhere
I’m getting tired of describing these :P … just listen to it.

Rob Zombie - What Lurks On Channel X
Best Rob Zombie song ever. Too damned short, however.

Drumcorps - Down
Awesomely programmed breakcore + metal. This continues to blow me away time and time again.

ohGr - Pore
The Skinny Puppy crew just don’t stop innovating. Ogre’s solo career is no exception.

Error - Nothing’s Working
Ever since hearing this track, I’ve been waiting for more of the same… but it seems that 5 tracks was enough for NIN collaborator Atticus Ross and his crew.

Skinny Puppy - Goneja
Quite possibly the most moving Skinny Puppy song I’ve ever heard. I don’t understand why Skinny Puppy fans hate this album so much

Saul Williams - Tr(n)igger
Saul wants you to get off your ass and live, damnit.

And that’s about it for now… I know there’s more that belong on this list (probably moreso than some of the ones that are on it) … but I’ll post em later. My taste in music probably won’t jive with many, but these songs are some that just catch my ear every time. Hopefully you guys find something you like by checking out these tracks :)

Now… please, share the songs that wow you!!!

PS: Please listen to full quality versions of these tracks… low bitrate versions kinda suck, and don’t really represent what I find so amazing about half of them. Sound quality is a huge draw with many of these tracks.

sinead oconnor - nothing compares
-always does it.
The Who - Boris the spider
-i didn’t ever pay any attention to The Who until i heard this song.
Ween - The Stalion pt.3 (from pure guava)
-amazing in many respects.

Here’s my list of tracks that jump to mind right now, I probably forget half, but
there’s simply too much music out there. For me a track with WOW is a track that
I can listen to whenever, wherever and love it just as much. Simply, songs that
survive the crunching wheel of time.

Herbie Hancock - New York Minute
It doesn’t get more jazz than this, the speed, the mood, the way you can almost
taste the city in every note played. The only thing that’s bad about it is that it isn’t
20 minutes long.

Sergei Prokofiev - 1st string quartet, second movement
Or well… I’m not sure that’s the name… I have this piece performed by the Emerson Quartet
and it is by far the most brilliant piece of music I have ever ever ever heared.

Venetian Snares - Die Winnipeg Die Die Die Fuckers Die
My all time favourite piece of intense breakbeat hardcore music. Nuff sed. It kills.

Yasunori Mitsuda - One who bares Fangs at God (Xenogears)
This song never fails to inspire me when I’m writing. From the Xenogears soundtrack
on the PS1. Awesome game, too. Killer soundtrack.

Nobuo Uematsu - One Winged Angel (Advent Children)
If you haven’t heared this, I pity thee. It’s not too late. This is the most WOW of all for me.

Mr Mark Dollin - Vulcanella Self Destruct
The track is one big intense build-up, almost as if the music itself is setting your soul on fire.
I liek and lov.

The Doors - The End
It eats me alive. Music that scares me is always good. This song, to me, actually sounds
like the end of all things beautiful. Melancholic in a self-destructive way. Wow.

Noisia/Huilende Rappers - Piraterij
Brilliant musically, sonically and lyrically. The best hiphop on our planet, too bad so few
people understand our grinding chainsaw language.

Bob Dylan - I Want You
One of the very few love songs I can relate to.

Hiroki Kikuta - A Bell is Tolling
Secret of Mana’s soundtrack on the SNES, the Ice Palace. I just find it brilliant.

Joe Hisaishi - The Sixth Station
From the Spirited Away soundtrack. Very emotional, hits the spot for me.

Goo Goo Dolls - Iris
One of the very few love songs I can relate to.

Hitoshi Sakimoto - The Cerobi Steppe
Another soundtrack song, from FFXII. I just love it, everytime I hear it.

The Rolling Stones - Paint it Black
Too classic to even explain why.

Jon Hendricks & Jazz Messengers - Mourning
One of those themes that grab me and hold my interest. I have yet to hear
a perfomance of this jazzer that I don’t like.

John Lennon - Working Class Hero
Very very wow, love the simplicity, works killer with the lyrics.

Aphex Twin - Nannou
Has everything I look for in music, performed in an amazing way and with an original theme.

Squarepusher - Tundra
This music feels liquid to me, as if it’s different everytime I hear it. How WOW is that? Pretty damn wow.

Gorillaz - Kids with Guns
Hiphop rock ballad with demented lyrics. Hurray! Musically very interesting as well.

Richard Wagner - Ride of the Valkyries
I don’t need to explain why, do I?

Manhatten Transfer - Topsy
The most amazing jazz theme every written and performed. Period. I live on this song!

edit: forgot sooooo much!!

Epidermis sure has some kind of power.

My choices are much less diversified, however it does not reflect the range of my musical interests, the songs that really wows me are often made by the same composer/band.

Let’s start with some vsnares stuff.

Venetian Snares - Husikan Rave Dojo.

This song has it all: retro synth and stabs, jungle female singing (ahhhhh), catchy vocals, awesome voice manipulations, stretch, delays, pitch, crazy random breaks, catchy melody, breakdown, crazy never ending snarerolls, and a beautiful ending reminding me of goldie’s drum and bass. All that in less than 4 minutes. WOW.

Venetian Snares - Des Plaines

You can’t skip the drums in that one. This fast little break with short hits and very short delay sometimes, this is awesome. And that weird snare with vocals behind, wow.

Venetian Snares - Twelve

Too catchy.

Last Step - When You’re Smiling and When You’re Not

I don’t know if it’s lame or not, but when Aaron Funk goes for catchy retro synth and vocals… I can’t resists…

Last Step - You’re a Nice Girl

Much calmer and much less catchy than the previous one, but this one is epic.

Last Step - My Home Recordings

This song has a lot of stuff in it but my favorite part is the vocal part between 3:12 and 3:39. The TB-303 is great too.

Last Step - Cakey

Reminds me of “You’re a nice girl” but even if it’s the same genre I don’t feel that it’s redundant to put two similar songs up here.

Autechre - Basscadet

I’m including all the remixes on the ep as well. This oldschool autechre song makes me dream.

Autechre - Untilted

I put the whole album because it’s so hard to pick a song out of it. This album was made to be listened as a whole. Not the easiest to enjoy, this album is one those that opened me to electronic music.

Aphex Twin - milkman

This one is a gem. So catchy, yet unique and interesting.

AFX - Analord 10

The two songs from Analord 10 really goes together. Definitely the two best tracks in the Analord series. Epic acid.

Boards of Canada - June 9th
Boards of Canada - Aquarius funkeh
Boards of Canada - 1969
… so many others…

Seriously, I was in this 10 hours bus ride across Canada and… there’s nothing better than Boards of Canada in these moments. Not kidding. For 10 hours straight I’ve been listening to some Orbital, Boards of Canada, Bogdan Raczynski and Autechre and it was so awesome.

Bogdan Raczynski - Kimi Wa Tsumannai, Boku Wo Ira

This guy knows what he’s doing. This melody is so touching, I love how this guy can make some cheezy video game waves sound very good because of the melody. Also the breaks seems to be very fast yet slowed down, that’s a weird feeling that I like.

Coprofago - Human Nature

What? not electronic music you say? Yup, some jazzy death metal made it in the list. This Meshuggah-like band is really interesting as they are superior to Meshuggah, They understood that an awkward rhythm is not enough, you have to splash in some musical skills as well, that’s why Human Nature has an awesome breakdown made of a bass solo accompagnied by super fast yet relaxing drum rhythm and a classy electronic pad. This part of the song joined to the metal, Meshuggah-like-but-even-better rest of the song makes it a classic to me.

Cynic - Focus

This whole album made me evolve from a kid who likes music because it’s heavy to a teenager who is researching feelings and emotions in the music in listens to. This whole album made features a kind of metal that goes beyond what is expected from death metal. Jazz guitar and percussions, neo progressive rock (here I mean: spastic ink, behold the arctopus, etc) complexity, conceptual vocals all mixed together by a young band that became a legend of metal shortly after their first and only album in 1993.

Note: I think they are making a come back… I doubt that it’s as good as it was, but I should give it a try.

Dev/Null - track 7

I know it’s weird but I can find in this track all my teenage years…

Ephel Duath - Ironical Communion

Here’s another band from my teenages. After discovering Cynic (Coprofago is part of that batch as well) and finding out that it was possible to play more than 1 genre at the time, I started my quest to find the most twisted up bands (I ended with a band that made a 50 seconds long song with 50 genres in it… lol) Ephel Duath is some death and sometimes black metal with some slow prog rock, trumpets, clean vocals and intense jazz. This song is my favorite.

Estradasphere - Hunger Strike

Once again, a band that plays more than one genre at the same time, these bands are really killing the concept of genres and that’s what I like about them.

This band offers the best live performance I’ve seen, they are intense! They go from death metal to jazz to big band, to video game music to asian traditional stuff, to flamenco, to … anything, they just do it and they do it better than everyone else.

This song is a 20 minutes long mess with so many elements. Guitars, Drums, Bass, Violo, Sax, Trumpet, etc… and you get a special solo for each of them!

These guys are virtuosos and they let you know what they worth.

Hmm I’m gonna stop listing songs now… but I’ll just name a few more bands that really touches me.

Fantomas, Mr. Bungle (mike patton’s projects… you know)
John Zorn, Naked City, Masada, etc… the guy is a genius
Herbie Hancock (wow, so many good songs by this guy)
Secret Chiefs 3 (kinda linked with Mr Bungle and Estradasphere)
Portishead (of course)
Massive Attack
Mouse on Mars
Pink Floyd
Porcupine Tree
The Tuss


Botb reminded me of Prokofiev, however my favorite is Piano Sonata 6, Allegro Moderato.

Jeff Buckley - So Real

Aphex - 54 Cymru Beats

Autechre - Eggshell

Marvin Gaye - Whats Going On

Talking Heads - Heaven

Steely Dan - Hey 19 - cant find a good version.

PRINCE - Nothing Compares to you/Purple Rain/Wanna Be Your Lover (prince has actually removed all the audio from his videos on the tube…fucking ridiculous wanker

Squarepusher - Coopers World/Bonneville Occident (the bonneville video is of some guy showing us his robot in a game.

Frank Zappa - Zoot Allures/Peaches en Regalias/Cosmic Debris/Muffin Man/Willie the Pimp/Valley Girl…

The Cure - Between Truth Goodness, and Beauty

These are tunes that have been on my ipod for a long time.

At the top of my head.

Crystal Method - More or less anything from them, personal favs. High Roller, Keep Hope Alive and many more.
You’ve probably heard them in TV shows and movies, was also in Need For Speed game/games (can’t remember version).
Most common in action scenes for some reason.
Make you want to drive too fast on the highway :D

Mike Oldfield - Songs of Distant Earth, one of the few albums I can listen from start to end without skipping songs.

Vangelis - Memories of Green, amazing slow piano tune. There are more from Vangelis but I really like that one.

Any Queen- or Abba-track :drummer:

+1 … this is my #2 favorite vsnares track. Epidermis still comes in at #1 though :P

Now with some Crazy reference youtube’s

Aphex Twin - 54 Cymru Beats
Dune - Million miles from home
David bowie - Ashes to ashes
Electric Six - Dance Commander
Goo goo dolls - Iris
Greenday - Good riddance (time of your life)
Iggy Pop - the Passenger
John Frusciante - Ramparts
Johnny Cash - Hurt
Jan Hammer - Crockett’s theme
Mindless Self Indulgence - Clarissa
Muse - Bliss
Nine Inch Nails - Right where it belongs
the Prodigy - Smack My Bitch up
Plaid - Eyen
Rammstein - Keine lust
RMB - Spring
Scooter - Jigga Jigga
Slagsmalsklubben - sponsored by destiny
System Of a down - Kill Rock ‘n’ Roll
the Stranglers - Golden brown
the Streets - Blinded by the lights
Tenacious D - Tribute
Clint Mansell - Lux Aeterna
Semisonic - Closing time

ergh, no more goo goo dolls…please! :smashed:

Yah… that one and Voodoo People really do make me go “wow” every time ;)

Iris was actually part of my list years ago, but I eventually grew tired of it. I can still identify with it sometimes, but I think I’ve grown past my wish for one person to understand me. I’m onto full on world domination now :ph34r:

Same here, i still have a compilation i made with it on, but i could never listen to now. Its so ridiculously cliched and dumb.
“when everything feels like the movies, you bleed just to know your alive”???
fucking shambolic… :wacko:

Kilowatts - Monument
Mujuice - Mertviy Malchik
Infected Mushroom - Dracul
Infected Mushroom - Double Click (piano version)
many many other their tracks… These are my most favs ;))

There are so many of them. I’ll step in with:

Depeche Mode - Never Let Me Down Again

Totally agree with BYTE-Smasher on “Behind The Wheel” being an awesome song as well.

Brothers Four - Greenfields ;)

Chris Hülsbeck - Shades

His original sid-Version. :walkman:

I’ve got Tooo much I can’t get enough of.

but some that cross my mind just now:

[b]Steve Reich - Different Trains

Elvis Costello - I want you

Joe Jackson - Fools in Love

Imogen Heap - Hide and Seek

The Lee Sankey Group - Tell me there’s a Sun

i am not sure if this makes any sense - i started to make a list and understood, that i never can remember the name of every track, so the list became too long. anyway:

serart - narina (experimental folk)
system of a down - know (alt metal)
lou reed - perfect day (rock)
lali puna - together in electric dreams (indie rock)
velvet & a-move - lupo (melodic idm, also here is a pouet link to “rise” intro, where this tune is a soundtrack )
Boards of Canada - june 9th (melodic idm)
Pan Sonic - Uranokemia (experimental electronics)
isis - dulcinea (post metal)
isis - false light (post metal)
sepultura - refuse/resist (thrash metal)
sepultura - ratamahatta (thrash metal)
converter - shock front (rhythmic noise)
portishead - glory box(trip-hop)
shoking blue - love buzz (psychedelic rock)
dusty kid - constant rising (minimal techno)
moderat - let your love grow(melodic idm)
marchak - Ne Byt’ Chelovekom (Not to be a Human) (screamo)
o.l.d. - happy tantrum (experimental industrial)
Steve Von Till - breath (folk)
Pink Floyd - Wish You Were Here (psychedelic rock)
Neurosis - Stones from the sky (sludge, metal)
Burial - Spaceape (dubstep)
Burial - Distant Light (dubstep)
Bad Sector - Ampos (dark ambient)
Godflesh - empyreal (industrial)
Godflesh - crush my soul (industrial)
distance - night vision (dubstep)
Scorn - Six Hours One Week (abstract dub)
Riskotheque - platonia (dubstep)
Dj Hidden - Sandwaves (darkside dnb)
Bong Ra - Suicide Speed Machin Girl (breakcore)
Depeche Mode - In your room (pop)
Enduser - Assasin (breakcore)
Rotator - Dancehall Devastation (breakcore)
Current Value & Snow - The Edge Of Dreams (dnb)
bjork - pagan poetry (music video for this song is really great, it is a pity i couldn’t found it on youtube)

i’ll surely check those tracks, your all mentioned here, later.

Damn you BYTE!!! I’ve spend the last 24 hours drafting my list and already it’s up to 393 items! It’s going to take me a while to get this right… Aaargh!

lmfao … dude… just the items that continue to stun you every time you hear them xD

This song is mesmerizing, man.

FSOL - Dirty Shadows
The Orb - Blue room
Axiom Funk - Cosmic slop
also Bill Laswell - Cosmic Trigger
Jimmy Hendryx - Voodoo child
…and many others
(but, FSOL and Orb make all my days:)