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15 Best The Police Songs Of All Time (Greatest Hits)

August 7, 2023
the police songs

The Police were a hugely popular English rock band in the late 1970s and early 1980s, and their music continues to be revered to this day.

This article will explore the 15 greatest hits from The Police, providing an overview of each song and its lasting impact.

Through an examination of the band’s most popular songs, it is possible to gain insight into the band’s musical style and lyrical themes.

Moreover, The Police songs provide a window into the band’s legacy and offer a glimpse of how their music has endured over the decades.

The Police’s music resonates with listeners to this day, and this article will explore why, showcasing some of their most popular and iconic songs.

1. “Every Breath You Take”

The 1983 hit song “Every Breath You Take” by The Police is widely considered to be one of the most iconic and influential songs in the history of popular music.

Written by Sting, the song was the first single from the album Synchronicity and topped the Billboard charts for weeks.

The song has been covered by numerous artists and featured in various films, television shows, and commercials.

Its dark, brooding lyrics, layered instrumentation, and memorable chorus have helped to make it one of the most enduring songs of all time.

2. “Tea In The Sahara”

A seminal track from The Police’s repertoire, “Tea in the Sahara” features a hauntingly melodic soundscape, a signature of the band’s style.

The song, written by Sting, is a reflection on the harsh realities of life in the desert and the difficulties of maintaining hope in the face of adversity.

The track’s instrumentation is minimalistic, combining a sparse guitar line, a distant bass, and a simple percussion track.

Sting’s vocal performance is superb, conveying the despondence of the lyrics with a melancholic yet hopeful tone.

The song is a testament to The Police’s ability to craft compelling music that is both emotionally evocative and musically complex.

3. “The Bed’s Too Big Without You”

An iconic single from The Police, “The Bed’s Too Big Without You” conveys a melancholic melody and somber lyrics.

Reflecting on the loneliness and pain of a broken relationship, the song features a unique blend of reggae and new-wave elements.

Sting’s powerful vocals, as well as the prominent use of a synthesizer, contribute to the song’s atmosphere of sorrow and loss.

The single was released in 1979 and quickly became a classic, showcasing the band’s distinct style and genre-blending abilities.

4. “Don’t Stand So Close To Me”

Released in 1980, the song “Don’t Stand So Close To Me” by The Police showcases the band’s skill in combining a range of musical genres.

Reggae, rock, and pop elements blend with Sting’s distinct vocals to create a unique and memorable piece.

The song’s lyrics explore themes of temptation and forbidden love, with a sense of danger and intrigue contributing to its lasting appeal.

Its memorable hook and sing-along chorus have made it an iconic hit for the band, a testament to their successful fusion of musical styles.

5. “Message In A Bottle”

The Police’s 1979 single “Message In A Bottle” is a melodic exploration of loneliness and longing set against a backdrop of ska-influenced rock.

It features a reggae-influenced rhythm section, Steve Summers’ melodic guitar riff, and Sting’s powerful vocals.

Lyrically, it speaks of an isolated individual sending out a plea for connection in the form of a message in a bottle.

Its melancholic tone and evocative imagery have helped it become one of The Police’s most beloved and iconic songs.

6. “Walking On The Moon”

Inspired by reggae and funk, The Police’s 1979 single “Walking On The Moon” is a powerful exploration of longing and alienation.

The song is a metaphor for a lack of connection and the struggle for understanding.

Sting’s vocals are emotive, conveying a sense of isolation while the underlying instrumentation consists of guitar, bass, and drums.

The arrangement is complex and dynamic, with a steady beat and bright, soaring guitar riffs.

The song’s structure is linear, building on the verses and chorus to create a dynamic and memorable musical journey.

“Walking On The Moon” is an iconic song that has stood the test of time.

7. “Roxanne”

Widely praised, The Police’s 1997 single “Roxanne” is a classic example of the band’s post-punk style.

The catchy, reggae-influenced track narrates a story of unrequited love, with Sting’s distinctive, emotive vocal delivery at its core.

Constructed around a simple, steady two-chord progression, the song’s instrumentation is sparse and minimalistic, featuring a simple drumbeat and Sting’s varied bass playing.

Released to critical acclaim, “Roxanne” has become a staple of the band’s live performances and remains one of their most beloved singles.

8. “King Of Pain”

Released in 1983, “King Of Pain” is a classic example of The Police’s signature new wave sound.

Sting’s lyrics provide a vivid depiction of the singer’s inner struggle and emotional pain.

The song’s instrumentation combines a variety of elements, such as a driving bassline, ringing guitar motifs, and a pulsing reggae-influenced drum beat.

The song’s soundscape further enhances the mood of despair and hopelessness.

The song’s enduring appeal makes it one of The Police’s greatest hits.

9. “Wrapped Around Your Finger”

With its intricate production and hypnotic melody, “Wrapped Around Your Finger” is an iconic example of The Police’s attention to detail in composition.

The track was released in 1983 as the fourth single off their studio album, Synchronicity.

Sting’s signature bassline weaves through the song, creating a distinct groove and atmosphere.

The use of layered vocal harmonies, along with the cleverly placed instrumental breaks, make this track a memorable piece of music from the band’s repertoire.

Its success has cemented it as one of The Police’s greatest hits, enjoyed by generations of fans.

10. “Demolition Man”

“Demolition Man,” a single from The Police’s album Ghost In The Machine, is an upbeat and memorable track.

Combining a reggae rock rhythm with Sting’s unique vocals, the song expresses the struggle of a man who is constantly pursued by the law.

Lyrics convey a sense of powerlessness and isolation in a world of police control.

This track remains a classic example of The Police’s unique blend of rock and reggae, and its instantly recognizable hook and catchy chorus make it a fan favorite.

11. “Synchronicity II”

Synchronicity II” is the second single from The Police’s fifth studio album, drawing on rock, reggae, and punk influences to create a unique and memorable sound.

The song features Sting on lead vocals and bass, Andy Summers on guitar, and Stewart Copeland on drums.

Its primary components are a light reggae beat and a driving rhythm section, along with a melodic and catchy guitar riff.

The lyrics explore themes of fate and the consequences of human choices.

Musically, the song is memorable and catchy and has become one of The Police’s most iconic songs.

12. “Invisible Sun”

“Invisible Sun” is a powerful song by The Police that explores the consequences of violence and oppression.

The song’s chorus speaks of hope and faith in a better future, despite the harsh realities of the present.

The thoughtful lyrics, along with the haunting melody, create a powerful, emotive piece that speaks to the struggles of a nation.

The song has become an anthem for those suffering from violence and oppression and serves as a reminder of the need to strive for a more peaceful future.

13. “Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic”

The Police’s song “Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic” encapsulates a dream-like fantasy of romance and wonder.

It features a soft, melancholic arrangement of strings and gentle guitar chords.

The lyrics describe a person with magical powers and suggest that every action taken by the person is special and remarkable.

The song was released in 1981 as the lead single from the band’s album, Ghost In The Machine, and went on to reach the top of the UK Singles Chart.

In terms of its composition, the song is an example of how the band skillfully blended elements of post-punk, jazz, and reggae to create a unique sound.

14. “So Lonely”

The Police’s 1978 single, “So Lonely,” is an apt follow-up to the band’s 1981 hit “Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic.”

This nostalgic, melancholic track is a distinct departure from the upbeat reggae-inspired sound of its predecessor.

Lead singer Sting’s soft vocal delivery and the gentle, folky instrumentation highlight a longing for companionship and a sense of loneliness.

The song is a classic example of the band’s ability to combine styles and create a unique sound.

15. “Spirits In The Material World”

“Spirits In The Material World” is a 1981 track by The Police that showcases the band’s experimentation with different genres and diverse instrumentation.

Incorporating elements of punk, new wave, reggae, and pop, the song is composed of drums, bass, guitar, and keyboards.

Sting’s vocal performance is a mix of melodic singing and rap-like delivery.

The lyrics focus on the idea of a spiritual world and the human need to connect with it.

The song is a perfect example of The Police’s ability to mix genres and create a unique sound.

Best The Police Songs Of All Time – Final Thoughts

The Police created music that resonated with audiences, with each song offering a unique take on a wide range of topics.

From the romantic devotion of “Every Breath You Take” to the dark reflection of “Invisible Sun”, the band’s catalog is varied and timeless.

Their impact on popular music is undeniable, and their songs remain some of the most beloved in history.

Whether it’s the driving beat of “Don’t Stand So Close To Me” or the thoughtful lyrics of “Spirits In The Material World”, The Police’s greatest hits are a lasting testament to their skill as songwriters and performers.

You may also like: Best Pop Songs of All Time

Will Fenton

Will, the founder of MIDDER, is a multifaceted individual with a deep passion for music and personal finance. As a self-proclaimed music and personal finance geek, he has a keen eye for futuristic technologies, especially those that empower creators and the public.

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