The 10 Best Psychedelic Rock Songs of All Time

A great psychedelic rock song can transport you to another time and place. Here are ten of the best psychedelic rock songs of all time.

The Beatles – “A Day in the Life”

Released in 1967 on their album Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, “A Day in the Life” is one of the Beatles’ most well-known and influential songs. The track is notable for its use of various sound effects, including coffee cups sounds and a piano crashing down a stairwell. “A Day in the Life” is often cited as one of the best examples of psychedelic rock and is included on numerous lists of the greatest songs of all time.

The Beach Boys – “Good Vibrations”

“Good Vibrations” is a song by American rock band the Beach Boys, released as a single on October 10, 1966. The track was composed and produced by group leader Brian Wilson, with words by Mike Love. It was the band’s first single after signing with Capitol Records. Upon its release, “Good Vibrations” received immediate acclaim from music critics for its innovative production techniques. It has since been recognized as one of the greatest songs of all time.

In 2004, Rolling Stone ranked it No. 6 on their list of the “500 Greatest Songs of All Time”, and in 2006, it was voted No. 1 in Mojo’s poll of “The 100 Greatest Singles of All Time”. In 2015, Pitchfork placed it at No. 8 on their list of “The 200 Best Songs of the 1960s”, and says: “‘Good Vibrations’ is a flawless pop masterwork—the kind of record that could only have come from Brian Wilson’s fevered imagination…It’s precise but somehow also shambolic; ornate but punk; propulsive but also static.”

Pink Floyd – “Another Brick in the Wall”

“Another Brick in the Wall” is a song by the English rock band Pink Floyd. It was released as a single with “Run Like Hell” on 16 November 1979, reached number one in the UK charts, and became the band’s only single to top the US Billboard Hot 100 chart.

The song is included on Pink Floyd’s eleventh album, The Wall (1979). Written by Pink Floyd keyboardist Richard Wright with lyrics by Roger Waters, “Another Brick in the Wall” was a protest against rigid schooling and conformity. It also reflects Pink Floyd’s disdain for authority figures, particularly teachers.

Although it was not included on The Wall’s original release as a double album, “Another Brick in the Wall (Part 2)” was later released as a single from The Wall: Part 2 (1981), an album compiled from outtakes and demos. The single charted at number one on the UK Singles Chart, number 35 on the US Billboard Hot 100 chart, and number three on the Australian ARIA Singles Chart.

The Doors – “Light My Fire”

“Light My Fire” was the first single from The Doors’ self-titled debut album, and it went to #1 on the Billboard charts in 1967. It’s one of the band’s most well-known songs, and it perfectly encapsulates their signature sound: Jim Morrison’s reptilian croon, Robby Krieger’s jazzy guitar licks, and Ray Manzarek’s eerie organ playing. The song is also notable for its seven-minute length, which was pretty unusual for a pop single in the ’60s.

Jimi Hendrix – “Purple Haze”

Released in 1967, “Purple Haze” is one of the most iconic psychedelic rock songs of all time. Jimi Hendrix’s signature guitar riff and mind-bending lyrics transport listeners to another world. The song is a perfect example of Hendrix’s skill as a songwriter and musician, and its timeless appeal has made it one of the most popular psychedelic rock songs of all time.

Led Zeppelin – “Kashmir”

“Kashmir” is a song by the English rock band Led Zeppelin, written by Jimmy Page and Robert Plant. It is included on the band’s sixth studio album, Physical Graffiti (1975). With “Kashmir”, Led Zeppelin created one of their most enduring anthems.

The song was born out of Jimmy Page’s experiments with the bowed guitar technique, which he had first used on the song “Dazed and Confused” from Led Zeppelin’s debut album. When he revisited the technique for Physical Graffiti, he decided to use it for a new song that he and Robert Plant were working on. The result was “Kashmir”, a track that utilised both the bowed guitar and Page’s trademark use of friend E bows.

Plant’s lyrics for “Kashmir” were inspired by his travels in Morocco, Egypt and Greece. The opening line (“An English girl got married to an African man”) was inspired by a news story he had read about an interracial marriage that had caused a scandal in England at the time. The rest of the lyrics paint a picture of an exotic, mystical land that Plant had visited in his mind’s eye.

The finished track was over seven minutes long, making it one of Led Zeppelin’s longest songs. It was also one of their most complex creations, with multiple time changes and multiple sections. Despite its length and complexity, “Kashmir” became one of Led Zeppelin’s most popular songs, thanks to its catchy melody and Page’s instantly recognisable riff. It has been covered by many artists over the years, including George Harrison, Jerry Garcia and Def Leppard.

The Rolling Stones – “Paint It, Black”

The Rolling Stones’ anguished 1966 classic “Paint It, Black” is one of the most overtly psychedelic songs ever recorded by a major rock band. The song’s dark and swirling music, combined with Mick Jagger’s despairing lyrics, create a menacing and disorienting atmosphere that feels like a bad trip gone wrong. “Paint It, Black” is a perfect example of how the Stones were able to incorporate psychedelia into their music without sacrificing their hard-edged rock & roll edge.

David Bowie – “Space Oddity”

Psychedelic rock, also referred to as “acid rock”, is a type of rock music that evolved in the late 1960s and early 1970s with the aim of Better reflecting the expanded consciousness and psychological insights boasted by psychedelic drugs.

The best psychedelic songs are those that manage to perfectly encapsulate the feelings of euphoria, Awareness, and oneness that come with psychedelics while also serving as excellent standalone pieces of music, regardless of context. With that in mind, here are 10 of the best psychedelic rock songs of all time.

1) David Bowie – “Space Oddity”
2) The Beatles – “A Day in the Life”
3) The Doors – “The End”
4) Jimi Hendrix – “All Along the Watchtower”
5) Pink Floyd – “Interstellar Overdrive”
6) Syd Barrett – “Octopus”
7) The Zombies – “She’s Not There”
8) Cream – “Crossroads”
9) The Velvet Underground – “I Can’t Stand It”
10) Neil Young – “Down by the River”

Queen – “Bohemian Rhapsody”

Queen – “Bohemian Rhapsody”

haps·o·dy ˈhapse(d)ē/Submit
1. an epic poem, typically one telling the adventures of a great hero.
2. a piece of music for orchestra and voice, typically on a grand scale and with elaborate orchestration.
3. a complex and confused series of events; an incoherent series of incidents: “a rhapsody of horrors”.

The Velvet Underground – “I’m Waiting for the Man”

“I’m Waiting for the Man” is a song by the American rock band the Velvet Underground. It was written by Lou Reed and released on their 1967 debut album, The Velvet Underground & Nico.

The song is about a heroin dealer and his customer. It is one of the band’s most popular songs, and has been covered by many artists.

The Velvet Underground was a rock band formed in New York City in 1964. The band was founded by Lou Reed and John Cale, who were later joined by Sterling Morrison and Maureen Tucker. Nico, a German singer-songwriter, became the fifth member of the band when they released their debut album, The Velvet Underground & Nico, in 1967.

The album included “I’m Waiting for the Man”, which was based on Reed’s experiences buying heroin from a dealer in Harlem. The song is one of the band’s most popular songs, and has been covered by many artists.

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