THE BEST Music

4 Ominous Notes

4 Ominous Notes

There’s a four-note melody which has found its way into numerous films, often at a moment when a character dies, or is in grave peril. Vox explores the origins of this ominous music, known as Dies Irae, which dates back to the 13th century.

System of a Tiny Drum

System of a Tiny Drum

…also known as Toxicity on a Toilet. Here’s something you don’t see every day – some guy playing the percussion section of System of a Down song on a miniature drum kit… in his bathroom. He’s also done the same for Twenty One Pilots, Green Day, and The Cranberries, among others.

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Money for Shopping

Money for Shopping

Musical musician Bill McClintock once again works his wizardry, combining two songs that you’d never expect to work together into one song that does. Listen up and enjoy as Dire Straits’ Money for Nothing melds brilliantly with Smokey Robinson and the Miracles’ Shop Around.

The Empire Strikes Axe

The Empire Strikes Axe

Star Wars tribute band Galactic Empire bangs out an awesome hard rock cover version of John Williams’ The Imperial March, giving the Empire’s most iconic theme song an appropriately razor-sharp edge to accompany all of their evil deeds. Even Emperor Palpatine approves, and he’s not easy to please.

AC/DC vs. Beethoven

AC/DC vs. Beethoven

Musician Peter Bence captured a live-looped sample of his performance of Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata, then used its energetic rhythm to segue into a version of AC/DC’s Thunderstruck, which features a similarly intense pace. The two compliment each other so well, you’d think they were one song.

The Truth About Vinyl Records

The Truth About Vinyl Records

Real Engineering explains the history of vinyl records, how they are made and how they work. In doing so, we learn that they are in no scientifically-demonstrable way superior to digital music. That said, the tangible and simple nature of vinyl still holds an appeal.

Max Cooper: Repetition

Max Cooper: Repetition

Visual artist Kevin McGloughlin teamed up with with musician Max Cooper for this mindbending audio-visual collaboration. Reminiscent of the work of the great Philip Glass, Cooper’s repetitive and driving sounds are reflected in surreal scenes which were digitally copied, tweaked, and pasted to repeat endlessly.

Breaking Bad: Enchanted

Breaking Bad: Enchanted

While it contains no new footage from the Breaking Bad movie El Camino, we still were entranced for the duration of this video which refreshes our memory on Jesse Pinkman’s rollercoaster of a story, set to the tune Enchanted by Chloe X Halle.

Playing the Balloon Bass

Playing the Balloon Bass

Musician Addi Somekh has been playing his unique musical instrument for more than 10 years now, so there’s no wonder he’s perfected his ability to eke a wide variety of notes and sounds out of a couple of balloons. His buddy Joey on the electric bass ain’t too shabby either.

Talking Steel Guitar

Talking Steel Guitar

Talk box vocal effects reached their height of popularity in the 1970s thanks to Peter Frampton and Joe Walsh, but back in 1964, musician and record producer Pete Drake applied the unique sound to his pedal steel guitar, with this performance of his country blues track Forever. And then there’s this.

Lose Yourself on Guitar

Lose Yourself on Guitar

Musician Luca Stricagnoli continues to wow us with his fingerstyle arrangements of popular songs, this time taking on Eminem’s rap anthem Lose Yourself from the movie 8 Mile, giving it a whole new sound and texture that still had us moving our arm to the beat when the rhythm kicked in.

Sad Friends Theme

Sad Friends Theme

So no one told you life was gonna be this way. Your job’s a joke, you’re broke… With the announcement that the NBC comedy Friends is leaving Netflix, musician Chase Holfelder decided to pay tribute to the series with a very special sad version I’ll Be There for You.

Jew’s Harp Orchestra

Jew’s Harp Orchestra

With its twangy mouth sounds, Jew’s harp (aka “jaw harp”) is one of the stranger instruments out there. For the most part, it’s an instrument that’s played by one musician at a time, but this ensemble of 30 or so harp players in Russia occasionally gets together to perform as a group, and the layered sound they make is wild.

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The Flaming Lips: Giant Baby

The Flaming Lips: Giant Baby

When it comes to Wayne Coyne and The Flaming Lips, we’ve come to expect the unexpected… This track from King’s Mouth is a story of a giant tot with a love for outer space, packing fat beats, analog squeals, and a psychedelic music video with special guest Fred Armisen. The album cut includes narration by Mick Jones of The Clash.

Jenn Champion x Weezer

Jenn Champion x Weezer

We all know Weezer loves to cover classics. Musician Jenn Champion pays it forward with a remake of Weezer’s The Blue Album, replacing the original’s garage rock with chunky synth rhythms, and smooth, feminine vocals. Her cover of Undone streams for free, while the full album is exclusively on vinyl from Turntable Kitchen.

Sansula Master

Sansula Master

Percussionist Conny Sommer is an expert at playing a variety of instruments, including the kalimba and the sansula, both of which are playing by plucking metal keys with the fingertips. We’re amazed by the finesse he’s able to get out of such a simple instrument.

Beatbox DIY Drum Machine

Beatbox DIY Drum Machine

A fun DIY kit for musicians, electronics hobbyists, and just about anyone who likes cool gadgets. The Rhythmo Beatbox lets you build a MIDI controller and drum machine in a cardboard box. It’s got arcade-style buttons, built-in sounds, a battery, and speakers. Its companion mobile app enables sound customization.

Quentin Tarantino’s Jukebox

Quentin Tarantino’s Jukebox

(PG-13: Gore, Language) Quentin Tarantino’s films work on so many different levels, from their unique approach to storytelling, to their deft blend of humor and violence, to their stylized visuals and sound design. Daniel Netzel of Film Radar explores how Tarantino’s thoughtful and creative musical choices complement his movies so well.

Cheap vs. Expensive Pianos

Cheap vs. Expensive Pianos

You can spend a few hundred bucks on a used upright piano, or hundreds of thousands or more on a concert grand. So what’s the difference? Musician Vinheteiro decided to play the same passage of music on six pianos of escalating values to see if we could tell them apart. Once we got past $50,000, we had trouble.

The LEGO Droid Orchestra

The LEGO Droid Orchestra

LEGO worked with synthesizer wiz Sam Battle of Look Mum No Computer to put together an electronic orchestra comprised of 42 real musical instruments and over 95 of LEGO’s Star Wars BOOST droids, all controlled by a bunch of mechanically-activated tablets. Of course, they played John Williams’ classic theme.

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Dillon Francis: Go Off (Nuthin’ 2 It)

Dillon Francis: Go Off (Nuthin’ 2 It)

(PG-13: Lyrics) Ain’t nuthin’ to it, but to do it. The DADS‘ delightful music video brings back memories of the Spike Jonze/Fatboy Slim/Christopher Walken collaboration on Weapon of Choice, and that’s a good thing. Sit back and enjoy as an ordinary guy breaks out his best dance moves to the infectious grooves of DJ Dillon Francis.

The Hater Song

The Hater Song

Like most people who post videos on YouTube, musician Madilyn Bailey has been subjected to an endless stream of hateful, poorly spelled comments by 12 year olds. Rather than taking them to heart, she turned their trolling into a song, and so far has racked up over 6 million views as the ultimate sweet revenge.

Pomplamoose: Love You Madly

Pomplamoose: Love You Madly

I don’t you jumping… unless this music’s thumping. The talented musicians of Pomplamoose turn in a great cover of one of our favorite tracks by Cake, the 2001 hit Love You Madly. While we miss the brass of the original, we dig this funky and fresh arrangement too.

Moon B: Welcome

Moon B: Welcome

Animator Joseph Melhuish presents a welcome video for observers and travelers to the planets of the fictitious “Udaya” system, which happens to share its name with Moon B’s album, from whence this smooth and funky electronic instrumental track comes.

Nintendo Beatbox Medley

Nintendo Beatbox Medley

Beatboxer 80Fitz presents mouth sound versions of classic Nintendo music, including tracks from Super Mario Bros., Yoshi’s Island, Super Mario World, Kirby’s Dream Land, and The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild.

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