songs about the end of the world
Entertainment & Playlists

15 Best Songs About the End of the World

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Written By Will Fenton
Entertainment & Playlists

15 Best Songs About the End of the World

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The world is a place full of conflict, chaos, and uncertainty.

As a result, songs about the end of the world have become increasingly popular.

This article will explore 15 of the best songs about the end of the world.

The article will look at the lyrical content of each song, as well as the musical composition.

Additionally, the article will examine the cultural context of the songs and how they are reflective of the times.

Through this analysis, the article will provide an overview of the best songs about the end of the world and their impact on society.

1. “It’s The End Of The World As We Know It (And I Feel Fine)” by R.E.M.

R.E.M.’s 1987 hit, “It’s The End Of The World As We Know It (And I Feel Fine)”, is an anthem for acceptance of an inevitable apocalypse.

The song’s upbeat, optimistic tone is in stark contrast to the dark lyrics.

Musically, the song is composed of a complex mix of styles, including rap, folk-rock, and post-punk.

Lyrically, the song is an exploration of how to accept the idea of the end of the world.

It is a reminder of the importance of resilience in the face of adversity.

2. “2012 (It Ain’t The End)” by Jay Sean Feat. Nicki Minaj

Jay Sean and Nicki Minaj‘s collaboration, “2012 (It Ain’t The End)”, offers a message of hope and resilience in the face of uncertainty.

The lyrics are a stark contrast to other popular end-of-the-world songs, as they suggest that death and disaster are not the only outcomes when the world ends.

The song encourages listeners to take control of their own destiny, embrace change, and be courageous in the face of adversity.

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The upbeat melody and optimistic lyrics offer an uplifting alternative to the bleakness of other songs in the same genre.

3. “We Will Become Silhouettes” by The Postal Service

The Postal Service’s “We Will Become Silhouettes” provides an evocative exploration of the potential consequences of a post-apocalyptic world.

The song’s lyrics discuss the end of the world from a somber, melancholic perspective, emphasizing the potential loss of love and connection.

Musically, the song features a steady, mid-tempo beat, layered with synths and electronic elements to create an atmosphere of foreboding sadness.

The track’s haunting, brooding tone effectively conveys the dread of a world in which relationships are lost and all that remains are shadows of the past.

4. “Waiting For The End Of The World” by Elvis Costello

Elvis Costello’s “Waiting For The End Of The World” is an evocative exploration of a potential post-apocalyptic future, encapsulating the fear and uncertainty of a world on the brink of destruction.

The song’s lyrics describe a bleak landscape that is bereft of hope and joy.

The chorus describes a person waiting for the end to come, suggesting a resignation to the fate of the world.

Musically, the song is a mid-tempo rock song with a melancholic mood.

The instrumentation is minimalist and accompanied by Costello’s trademark vocals.

The song is an effective portrayal of the fear and despair that comes with the realization of the end of the world.

5. “Dancing With Tears In My Eyes” by Ultravox

Ultravox’s “Dancing With Tears In My Eyes” captures a sense of despair and hopelessness through its somber lyrical content and haunting, minimalistic instrumentation.

The song is a lament for a world that is seemingly doomed, with lyrics detailing a post-apocalyptic landscape and the singer’s own feelings of sorrow and helplessness.

The instrumentation is sparse, relying heavily on a single synthesizer line and an ambient soundscape to create a mood of desolation and sorrow.

The song serves as a powerful reminder of the fragility of life and the potential for tragedy in an uncertain future.

6. “Until The End Of The World” by U2

U2‘s “Until The End Of The World” is a melancholic reflection on the fragility of human life, with the lyrics painting a vivid picture of a world on the brink of destruction.

The song explores themes of mortality, with its protagonist warning of the dangers of nuclear war.

Its lyrics also emphasize the importance of cherishing time with loved ones before it is too late.

Musically, the song is built on a mix of melancholy and hope, with its rousing guitar solos and uplifting choruses.

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As a whole, the song serves as a powerful reminder of the power of human connection in dark times.

7. “London Calling” by The Clash

U2’s song “Until The End Of The World” deals with the apocalypse in an almost dream-like way, contrasting it with The Clash’s “London Calling”, which takes a more straightforward approach.

The song is an apocalyptic warning about the dangers of nuclear war, as well as a call to arms for the working class.

The lyrics discuss London’s economic and political crisis and the need for the working class to stand up against the powers that be.

Musically, the song combines punk rock and reggae, making it one of the most iconic songs of the punk era.

Even today, it serves as a reminder of the dangers of nuclear weapons and the need for collective action.

8. “1999” by Prince

Prince’s song “1999” is an exploration of duality, with its lyrics exploring the idea of opposites and the power of a unified voice.

It is an upbeat, energetic track that speaks of the end of the world.

The use of imagery in the song reflects a deep understanding of the topic.

Prince’s unique and powerful sound conveys a sense of hope and possibility in spite of the end of the world, creating an uplifting message of unity.

9. “Apocalypse Please” by Muse

Muse’s 2003 song “Apocalypse Please” reflects a darker outlook on the potential end of the world.

It conveys a sense of despair and hopelessness.

The song’s minor key and atonality emphasize the bleakness of the message, while the use of strings and electronic textures creates a cinematic atmosphere.

Musically, it suggests a sense of hopelessness and dread that is reflective of its lyrical content.

10. “Doomsday Clock” by Smashing Pumpkins

The Smashing Pumpkins’ 2007 single “Doomsday Clock” is a powerful and evocative song that captures the sense of dread associated with the possibility of an impending apocalypse.

In it, the protagonist struggles to make sense of his chaotic world and the impending end of it.

The track’s heavy guitars and dark lyrics are a fitting backdrop for its lyrical themes of despair and desperation.

The song’s chorus, in particular, emphasizes the sense of fear and hopelessness that the situation brings.

Musically, “Doomsday Clock” is a fitting soundtrack for the apocalyptic mood it evokes.

11. “The Final Countdown” by Europe

Inspired by the Cold War, Europe’s 1986 hit song “The Final Countdown” is an iconic symbolic anthem that encapsulates the tension and uncertainty of the era.

With its driving synthesizers and soaring vocals, the song is charged with a sense of impending doom.

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It speaks to a feeling of impending disaster, a fear of a nuclear apocalypse, and a hope for a brighter future.

The lyrics reflect a sense of dread and despair in the face of the unknown.

Its popularity continues to this day, making it a classic song about the end of the world.

12. “The End” by The Doors

Released in 1967, The Doors’ “The End” is an epic rock anthem that captures the chaos, fear, and hope of the tumultuous 1960s.

Its lyrics explore themes of death, war, and love, as well as the idea of an apocalypse.

Musically, the song is a masterful blend of rock, jazz, and classical influences, featuring a range of instruments and sounds.

It builds to a powerful climax, with Jim Morrison’s impassioned vocal delivery conveying the urgent intensity of the lyrics.

This song is a powerful evocation of the end of the world.

13. “Idioteque” by Radiohead

Drawing inspiration from electronic and classical music, Radiohead‘s “Idioteque” is a powerful and emotionally charged track that explores themes of social anxiety and alienation.

The song’s intricate production reflects the chaotic nature of modern life, with its electronic instrumentation mixed with samples of classical orchestral pieces.

Thom Yorke’s vocals are raw and powerful, conveying a sense of panic and frustration.

The track’s haunting lyrics address the idea of an impending apocalypse, speaking to a society that is consumed by fear.

“Idioteque” is a thought-provoking and emotionally charged song that speaks to the anxieties of the modern world.

14. “4 Minutes” – Madonna Feat. Justin Timberlake And Timbaland

Fusing elements of pop, hip-hop, and R&B, Madonna’s “4 Minutes” featuring Justin Timberlake and Timbaland is an infectious and energetic track.

It is a post-apocalyptic vision of a world in chaos, with lyrics that evoke a sense of urgency as the clock ticks down to the end.

The beat is heavy and driving, with an upbeat tempo.

Timberlake’s rap verse adds to the intensity of the song, while Timbaland’s production creates an interesting soundscape.

The overall effect of “4 Minutes” is an exciting and powerful song about the end of the world.

15. “Five Years” by David Bowie

David Bowie’s “Five Years” is a melancholic and reflective exploration of mortality, set against a backdrop of a slowly-counting clock.

The song is thematically complex, braiding together themes of nostalgia, fear, and acceptance that are heavily enhanced by its use of musical motifs.

The song’s melancholic guitar riffs, layered vocals, and foreboding drum patterns build intensity, culminating in a climax that suggests a resigned acceptance of the inevitability of death.

Overall, “Five Years” is a powerful reflection on the human experience of mortality.

Best Songs About the End of the World – Final Thoughts

The end of the world is a powerful concept that has been explored in music for decades.

From R.E.M.’s “It’s the End of the World As We Know It (And I Feel Fine)” to Madonna’s “4 Minutes” to Elvis Costello’s “Waiting for the End of the World,” there is a wide variety of songs that explore the concept of the end of the world.

Each song offers its own unique take on the idea, with some being more hopeful while others are more despairing.

Ultimately, these fifteen songs demonstrate the diversity of emotions that can be evoked when considering the end of the world.

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Will Fenton

Introduced to good music at a young age through my father. The first record I remember being played was "Buffalo Soldier" by Bob Marley, I must've been six years old. By the time I was seven, I was taking drum lessons once a week. The challenge but the euphoric feeling of learning a new song was addicting, and I suppose as they say the rest was history. Favorite album of all time? Tattoo You by The Rolling Stones Best gig you've ever been to? Neil Young at Desert Trip in 2016 Media mentions: Evening Standard Daily Mail

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