Awesome Music / Sonic the Hedgehog

It's no secret. Compared to the Super Nintendo, the Genesis wasn't exactly a killer in the sound department. It was fueled in part by what soundtracks really caught your ear, but for a real classic, you didn't have to look any farther than the Sega mascot.

Everyone's favorite hedgehog speedster has had quite a number of notable themes over the years which cements that, although the ride has been rocky with plenty of ups and downs, and nobody can agree on what exactly are the ups and downs (among other things), one thing everyone can agree on is that the music is awesome. We'd put "pretty much every piece of music from all the games" here instead of an actual article, but you probably want to hear them for yourself.

And you can now get a lot of this music on iTunes!

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Main Games

    Sonic the Hedgehog 1, 2, 3&K (Genesis/Mega Drive) 
Sonic the Hedgehog
  • There may be many themes people and fans associate with the Blue Blur, but the Green Hill Zone is the definitive Sonic tune. Like Mario and the very first beats of the Mushroom Kingdom, the melody of Green Hill would make sure Sonic's music stuck around just as long as his rival's.
  • The music for Marble Zone has an appropriately sinister edge for a set of lava-based levels.
  • Spring Yard Zone features an easy-going track that may be somewhat at odds with the chaos of the series' first zone to feature pinball bumpers as obstacles, but it's definitely a winner.
  • The bass-heavy Labyrinth Zone stage music takes a lot of the sting out of the series' first water levels.
  • The Star Light Zone is something of a Breather Level between the frustrations of the water-based Labyrinth Zone and the difficulty spike in the Scrap Brain Zone, and its stage music is appropriately laid back, as well as being well matched to the level's "city by night" theme.
  • The Scrap Brain Zone theme (especially the first part) is one of the best tracks ever written to give the impression of "prepare for insane difficulty". Notably it, along with Star Light Zone, was reused as the music on the option screens for Sonic Advance. Furthermore, Scrap Brain Zone's theme, along with Green Hill Zone's music, were both included in Super Smash Bros. Brawl's awesome soundtrack.
  • The classic Robotnik boss theme. You can practically hear the sky clouding over the Green Hill Zone when this music kicks in for the first time.
  • Final Zone. The tune is more epic than the battle is.
  • The invincibility music is probably the catchiest 10 second loop ever.

Sonic the Hedgehog 2
  • The Sonic 2 Final Boss Theme. Quite possibly the most epic final boss battle in the series. (Though Sonic & Knuckles' certainly gives it a run for its money.)
  • The Death Egg Zone Theme is, for a 16-bit era track, an eerie, haunting piece of genius, with an undercurrent of madness. You normally only hear a couple seconds of it as you run to the right and face Silver Sonic, but if you stand there and wait for a little while you'll start getting thoroughly creeped out. Bonus points for the top melody sounding like some sort of deranged lullaby.
  • No variant on the boss music is complete without a reference to the real boss theme. Where the original game had its own unique flavor and Sonic 3 would later aim for straight-up intensity, this is too iconic to go unmentioned.
  • Hidden Palace Zone's Beta music (a variation on the Special Stage from Sonic the Hedgehog) is really good. Listen for yourself. Also the enhanced version for the iOS port. It's a shame that this song was never used in the iOS port in favor of Mystic Cave Zone 2-Player.
  • The Super Sonic theme in itself is almost enough incentive to get all the Chaos Emeralds. Worth noting is that this is the only Genesis game where Super Sonic gets his own theme as opposed to just borrowing the invinciblity theme from the game in question.
  • More or less every stage music deserves mention here:
    • With Emerald Hill, the game's soundtrack hits the ground running, the lively, upbeat music setting the stage for the fast-pace fun ahead. It also contains a Musical Nod to the Green Hill Zone theme from the previous game.
    • The strident Chemical Plant theme is ideal for the bright factory theme of the level.
    • Aquatic Ruin is energetic yet dramatic, befitting a level revolving around underwater ruins.
    • The jazzy Casino Night music really adds to the "vintage Las Vegas" feeling of the stage.
    • The "harmonica"-led music in Hill Top has a pastoral, almost bucolic atmosphere.
    • Mystic Cave starts with a bass-heavy introductory figure before leading into a tune that strikes the right blend of mystery and tension.
    • The heavily polluted Oil Ocean zone is well matched with a weighty yet eerie track.
    • Metropolis may have a simple melody, but it is incredibly catchy and infectious.
    • Sky Chase is appropriately light and ethereal for a level in which Sonic (or Tails if you're playing as him) rides on the wings of a biplane.
    • The martial music for Wing Fortress practically screams, "The final confrontation is coming up - go get 'em, Sonic!"
  • Similarly, the 2-player stage tracks hold their own against their 1-player counterparts in the awesomeness department:
  • Special Stage leads from a short fanfare to a relentlessly urgent track for the often chaotic journeys around the half-pipe stages.
  • The Two Player Results tune is a fairly happy and epic way to finish a 2 player stage.
  • The Ending Theme must be mentioned as a more than fitting a celebration for beating the game. All the more awesome that it's actually an arrangement of a song Masato Nakamura, the composer for Sonic 1 and 2, did as part of Dreams Come True.

Sonic 3 & Knuckles
  • The late Michael Jackson was hired to compose the entire soundtrack of Sonic 3, but bailed on the project after being dissatisfied with the Genesis's sound chip, leaving Brad Buxer, keyboardist and musical director of MJ, to do the rest. Similarities between songs in the finished game and songs by Michael have been noted by fans, but the only song actually confirmed to be composed by him is the credits theme, which featured a chord progression that would later be used in "Stranger in Moscow".
    • Ice Cap Zone Act 1 was actually an instrumental version of "Hard Times", a then-unreleased song by a group called the Jetzons, whose keyboardist (Brad Buxer) composed the music for the game after Michael Jackson quit. The song did eventually get released, but Sonic 3 was nearly 15 years old when it happened.
    • Remixing "Hard Times" with Ice Cap Zone gives awesome results.
  • The Sonic & Knuckles Opening Screen Theme. Its fanfare-like reprise in the very end of the Ending Credits is a thing of beauty.
  • Angel Island Zone is backed by the tropical-sounding Act 1. Notably, it shifts from a major key to a minor key for Act 2, set in the blazing inferno that used to be a tropical paradise and emphasising the now raised stakes. Act 2 received a sweet remix for Sonic Pocket Adventure.
  • Hydrocity Zone is a level with a lot of water. Act 1 offsets the frustration that usually accompanies such levels with a catchy, jazzy tune, but when Sonic is sucked down a drain between Acts 1 and 2, the Act 2 remix kicks up the adrenaline level as the stakes are raised for the impending confrontation with Eggman.
  • Marble Garden Zone's slick beat with very well-accompanying melody and melancholic climax makes the zone so much more memorable. Combining Michael Jackson's "Thriller" with Marble Garden Zone Act 1 gives awesome results.
  • Carnival Night Zone. Just the sound of that synthesized refrain as the deep bass and beats jam, punctuated by discordant quotes from "Entry of the Gladiators"... so cool. The Act 2 version is essentially the same as Act 1 but with some of the tracks removed for a few phrases; the sparser scoring suitably heightens the tension for the latest face-off against Eggman.
  • Ice Cap Zone Act 1 hits the ground running (or snowboarding, if you're playing as Sonic) with a pounding bassline under a simple chord pattern, followed by a melody that communicates the cold and wind of the zone perfectly. Ice Cap Zone Act 2 is just as awesome as the first, following the cue set by Carnival Night of keeping the same melody but paring down the "orchestration" (sometimes removing the bassline, sometimes removing the chords or the melody with which they alternate), as though the cold is continuing to set in, freezing out the missing instruments.
  • The groovy-sounding Launch Base Zone is just what the player needs to get the blood pumping for the final showdown of the uncoupled Sonic the Hedgehog 3, punctuated by synthetic voices shouting "Go! Go!". As with the previous two zones, Act 2 is simply a stripped down yet somehow more intense version of Act 1.
  • The legendary Mushroom Hill Zone. Act 1 is an easy-going track that settles the player back into a forest level after the frantic race through the Launch Base Zone, while Act 2 puts more emphasis on the bassline and drums to fire up the player for the zone's Eggman fight.
  • The Flying Battery Zone, in which Sonic infiltrates one of Eggman's ships and channels the best James Bond he can, has just the music for it. Act 1 takes wing straight away with an energetic bassline under a soaring octave figure, while Act 2 replaces the soaring octaves with a haunting vibes-like figure as the player heads deeper into Eggman's airborne warship to face the mad scientist himself.
  • The Act 1 music for Sandopolis Zone is appropriately sparsely scored for a level in which the player navigates an oppressively hot desert. But then Sonic/Tails/Knuckles enters a pyramid, and the far more sinister driving bassline of the Act 2 arrangement kicks in as the player fends off ghosts and other monsters, the darkness constantly threatening to close in.
  • Act 1 of the Lava Reef Zone announces itself immediately with a pounding bassline over which an almost ethereal melody appears. The track is transformed completely for Act 2 as the Lava Reef Zone itself goes from fire to ice, the pounding bassline still audible but now much milder as a smooth variation on the melody takes centre stage; the music continues into the Hidden Palace Zone. Both tracks have inspired some epic remixes. Here's a remix of the Hidden Palace Zone version.
  • The triumphant, heroic tune that plays in Sky Sanctuary Zone really inspires a "Yeah, we're gonna go save the world!" feeling. Fittingly, in the end credits medley, it is the last track to be sampled before the main title theme rounds things off.
  • Death Egg Zone is just as driving and sinister as music for an epic-length storming of Eggman's stronghold - only explored very briefly in Sonic 2 - ought to be. Acts 1 and 2 follow almost identical outlines, but the melody in Act 2 is an octave higher than in Act 1 to get the player's heart racing for this, the final confrontation with Dr. Eggman.
  • The Act 1 boss music from Sonic 3, from the opening "WOO! COME ON!", is equal parts energetic and discordant, just what the soundtrack needs for a confrontation with one of Eggman's automatons.
  • The Act 1 boss music in Sonic & Knuckles may be a simple rising and falling melodic figure, but the relentless bassline makes it clear the player needs to stay focused to stay alive.
  • The Act 2 boss theme! DADADA DADADA DADADA daaa daaa! The immediately singable opening riff soon gives way to lofty, echo-laden melody over a thundering bass that complements the ambitious scale of the Eggman boss fights beautifully. This theme is so good that someone made a brand new remix in its style, which has seen itself get used in certain Sonic Game Mods.
  • The Doomsday Zone. This one set the standard for all future Super Sonic battles. For those who couldn't get all the Emeralds, though, it was also used for the Super Mecha Sonic battle.
  • The final boss theme first shows up in Sonic 3, and it marks the first – and one of the only – times that Super Sonic is NOT invinciblenote . A grab attack from Big Arms will outright knock you clean out of your super form. This is the first time in this game that Robotnik's REALLY a true threat, and this music really knocks it home. There's also the Sonic Pocket Adventure version of it.
  • The dummied out beta credits are a standard Credits Medley like the other Genesis titles, but they still sound good!
  • Sonic 3's two-player competition mode was largely ignored in favor of the the one-player mode. A shame, as every track is a winner - Azure Lake goes from an almost dreamlike opening gesture to a lively tune anchored by a frantic bassline, Balloon Park conveys a suitably circus-like atmosphere for a track set in a city at night and based around jumping off giant yellow balloons, Chrome Gadget has a haunting yet energetic mood well matched to the industrial level it accompanies, Desert Palace provides another driving bass figure sure to get the player fired up for a race through the sand, and Endless Mine has a certain warmth to it that makes it the perfect track to round off a run through all five courses. The catchy Competition Select Theme is also very good.
  • The Special Stage Theme. This is the version heard ingame, where it gets fast and unbelievably awesome. That surreal blend of chirpy and mysterious at high speed is glorious.
  • The three bonus stages all have appropriately kickass tunes to accompany them. The "slot machine" stage takes a catchy bass riff and slaps an equally catchy melody on top of it. The "glowing spheres" stage has an otherworldly air to it befitting the bizarre world of magnetic globes that allow the player to outrun an Advancing Wall of Doom from below. And the "gumball machine" stage is backed by an energetic track that gives a real sense of fun to dispensing a long line of powerups and rings.
  • The catchy-sounding Knuckles' theme only makes a brief appearance in Sonic & Knuckles.
    • The Sonic 3 version, in spite of being more repetitive, is no slouch, either.
    • The arranged version also qualifies.
  • No Way! serenades you when you try to lock anything other than Sonic 2 or Sonic 3 onto Sonic & Knuckles. However, it sure doesn't sound like you actually made a mistake.note 
  • The level complete theme, which would be reused and rearranged numerous times in future games, probably the most of the level clear themes. It may be short and simple, but it conveys a real sense of achievement at getting through the level and getting the better of the boss.
  • The PC version of Sonic 3 (and Knuckles) on Sonic and Knuckles Collection had a few levels with tracks that were separate from their Genesis counterparts, some of them widely considered to be even better than them:

    Sonic CD 
Sonic the Hedgehog CD
  • Where to begin? First, the music shared between both soundtracks: the 'Past' music.

Japan/PAL Soundtrack
  • You Can Do Anything, Little Planet, and Cosmic Eternity. The first 30 seconds could also qualify as a Tear Jerker.
  • The Boss theme, an upbeat theme that starts with a younger man and an older man laughing as if they're making fun of Robotnik for his continual defeats, getting your heart pumping as you "work that sucker to death!"
  • Palmtree Panic: the upbeat Present, the heavily-distorted Bad Future and Good Future. The Present seems good for a day at the beach, while the Good Future is fitting for an outright beach party.
  • Collision Chaos: the Ear Wormy Present and Good Future.
  • Tidal Tempest: the ever-so-ambient Present.
  • Quartz Quadrant: the catchy Present, the chaotic Bad Future, and especially the Good Future.
  • Wacky Workbench: the chaotic, fast-paced techno Present and the bright, mechanical Good Future.
  • Stardust Speedway: the funky Present, the darker Bad Future, and the much brighter, calmer, and peaceful-sounding Good Future. Note that the Bad Future music plays during the Metal Sonic race even in the Good Future. Emphasis on "funky" for the present. It's even in the lyrics! "GET FUNKY! KEY-TO-KEY! GET FUNKY, YO HUSTLE! HUSTLE!"
  • Metallic Madness: The urgent Present, fitting for the final level, the you-screwed-up-big-time Bad Future complete with with sinister-sounding instead of jolly versions of the laughing men from the boss track and a robotic voice in the background saying stuff resembling anti-Sonic propaganda from Robotnik (e.g. "You can't do anything, so don't even try it, get some help," "Don't do what Sonic does," and finally, "Sonic, dead or alive, is mine"), and the a-winner-is-you Good Future that takes the instruments from the intro of the urgent present music and uses them for an upbeat background instrument.
  • Special Stage. Enough said.
  • Final Fever, when it's finally time to drive the man himself from the Little Planet once and for all.

North American Soundtrack
  • Sonic Boom, and the ending version.
    • This version of the Ending Arrange of Sonic Boom, from the Sonic BOOM Limited Collector's Edition soundtrack, has an extended outro that just works.
    • The Crush 40 vs. Cash Cash remix from the Sonic CD 20th anniversary soundtrack simply surpasses the original.
  • Palmtree Panic: the tropical Present, the darker Bad Future, and the calm and mysterious-sounding Good Future.
  • Collision Chaos: the atmospheric Present, the Bad Future, and the incredibly mellow Good Future.
  • Tidal Tempest: the haunting Bad Future, the funky Good Future.
  • Quartz Quadrant: the upbeat and catchy Present, the somewhat heavier Bad Future, the angelic Good Future.
  • Wacky Workbench: Starting of course at the awesomely funky Present music, you then have the Bad Future, and, as with the JP/EU version, the bright (yet still mechanical) Good Future.
  • Stardust Speedway. Stardust Speedway. Present, Bad Future, and especially the Good Future. Note in the remake that during the race with Metal Sonic, the Bad Future music plays even in the Good Future. In the original Sonic CD, the Good Future music plays through the race with Metal Sonic.
  • Metallic Madness: the suitably metallic-sounding Present, Bad Future, and the Good Future, which is upbeat yet still mechanical as with the Good Future music for Wacky Workbench in both soundtracks.
  • The Boss and Game Over themes, despite being Nightmare Fuel (or for some, because they're such) certainly qualify.
  • And of course, the Special Stage music.

    Sonic Adventure series 
Sonic Adventure
  • Choose Your Buddy, the perfect tune for a character selection screen.
  • Be Cool, Be Wild, And Be Groovy remixed for Sonic & Sega All-Stars Racing DS. The original version is pretty good, too.
  • Goodbye Chao, from both Sonic Adventure and Sonic Adventure 2. To hear this sad song, go to the Chao Garden, pick up a Chao, step on the Chao Transporter and select Good-bye. Who would send away a Chao after hearing this?
  • Knuckles' theme, "Unknown from M.E.", a rock-rap-jazz mix and a precursor to the Sonic Adventure 2 rap music associated with Knuckles.

Sonic Adventure 2

    Sonic Heroes 

    Sonic the Hedgehog (2006) 
  • Aquatic Base ~Level 1~, an ambient IDM song.
  • White Acropolis ~Snowy Peak~, Mariko Namba doing techno.
  • All four Crisis City themes are excellent. A friendly reminder that these are all songs that come from the first level, which is one heck of a way to kick things off!
  • End Of The World, one of the most beautiful tracks in the game. What makes it so special is it sounds slightly different for each character.
    • Tails' theme sounds empty and depressing. His best friend, his brother, was killed, and he doesn't know what to do without him.
    • Omega's theme is action packed, as he is the most focused and doesn't have much of a connection to Sonic.
    • Knuckles' theme has that 'lost' tone to it. Despite their rivalry, he's Sonic's best friend next to Tails, and he wants to save him too.
    • Silver's theme has a mythed tone in it. He was tricked into killing Sonic, and then once he realised this, he teamed up with Sonic to help save his future, only for him to be killed anyway. He wants to put this right.
    • Rouge's theme has her jazz to it. She isn't that close with Sonic, but is on good terms with him no less and wants to save him like everyone else.
    • Amy's theme is a void of sadness. Her supposed boyfriend has died and she is desperate to find the emerald. Even said emerald she finds is blue, which represents her sadness and possibly Sonic himself.
    • Finally, Shadow's theme is action packed like Omega's, but has a haunting tone to it. He's focused on finding the emerald, but has more of a connection to Sonic and secretly misses him.
  • Mephiles and Mephiles Phase 2 by Hideaki Kobayashi, both of which are reminiscent of his PSO works.
  • His World. Sure, the game it's from divides the fanbase, but the song itself? Awesome in a can.
  • Solaris' first boss theme, and his second boss theme
  • The results screen music.
  • Silver's theme from '06, Dreams of an Absolution and the remix from none other then Jun Senoue is considered to have the best lyrics of any Sonic song. It's pretty strange that one of the most unloved characters in the series gets the most Awesome Music in the game.
  • Both Wave Ocean tracks, The Water's Edge and The Inlet are pretty damn cool.
  • Flame Core.
  • Some Eggman love: The Egg Cerberus music was pretty epic and made even more epic with the Egg Wyvern. Or how about this eerie tune played during Eggman's plan? Sure it isn't exactly subtle as it builds, but it's still pretty sweet.
  • Kingdom Valley. Especially the Water part.
  • Sonic's ending theme was originally the ending song for Sonic the Hedgehog 2 for the Mega Drive; it was called "Sweet Sweet Sweet" and was performed by the Japanese band Dreams Come True. For Sonic '06, they actually did a remix of this song for Sonic's ending, and they did it with Akon! The Japanese version is "SWEET SWEET SWEET -06 AKON MIX-" and the English version is "Sweet Dreams". Pretty smooth tune, even if the English lyrics can be disturbing when one thinks about Sonic's, uh, kiss.
    • Even more disturbing when you remember that this song originally appeared in Sonic 2, and was implied to refer to Sonic and Tails.
    • Though it should be added that, while both versions can be listened to in-game (which one depends on your region; Sonic '06 did not allow you to switch languages despite both being in the game), neither one was included on either the official soundtrack or the Vocal Traxx album, probably due to copyright reasons.
  • How 'bout some event music? Mephiles' Whisper is supremely creepy, yet epic at the end as well. You Are My Companion (though not totally fitting for Silver's Ending) is a nice piece to set a tone of "I WILL get through the next character's story."
  • Crush 40's All Hail Shadow Remix from the game. It's one of their better covers of another band's song which actually manages to be better than even the original from Magna-fi. Just listen here which technically the Crush 40 remix first appeared in this game rather than Shadow the Hedgehog.
  • This song right here, which plays at the end of Shadow's story. It was actually part of the track "Showdown with Mephiles", for whatever reason.
  • Dusty Desert is a must-listen.
  • Radical Train, The Abandoned Mine and The Chase.

    Sonic Unleashed 

    Sonic the Hedgehog 4 
Episode I

Episode II

    Sonic Colors 

    Sonic Generations 
Console/PC Version

Nintendo 3DS Version

    Sonic Lost World 
  • The main theme, "Wonder World", is GLORIOUS.
  • The Final Boss theme. That fricking violin/guitar riff is made of pure awesomeness.
  • Sea Bottom Segue, which is the calming and so very beautiful theme to Tropical Coast Act 3/Lava Mountain Act 2.
  • The crowning jewel of Sonic Lost World's soundtrack, the insanely catchy Desert Ruins Act 2.
  • Desert Ruins Act 1 seems to be styled like a more extravagantly produced '60s surf rock number—think the popular version Dick Dale's "Misirlou", something to pump you up, with catchy, vaguely Egyptian-sounding guitar and horn riffs.
  • This variant of the Deadly Six's leitmotif is insanely catchy and awesome, and it could potentially be one of the very few video game boss themes to use a banjo throughout.
  • Sky Road 1's music seems to encapsulate the spirit of Lost World... You're on a journey through a strange, exotic, and beautiful land. And Act 2 (3 in the 3DS version) feels like you're flying through enemy territory, ready for a climactic final battle with your nemesis.
  • Silent Forest Zone 2 is perhaps the very first time a tango has appeared in a Sonic game and demonstrates that Sonic can handle ANY musical genre with mastery.
  • Dragon Dance, from Sky Road Zone 2, is a perfect song to serve as a prelude to your first fight against Zavok.

    Sonic Mania 
  • The trailer to the game exposed a lot of Sonic fans to Eletronica artists Nitro Fun & Hyper Potions with a beat that emulated back to the original games. Even a cheery "SEGA!" echo in the background.
  • The initial reveal of the game showed three different songs, and they quickly garnered an extreme amount of praise from the fanbase. The most popular of the three, however, is the theme of Studiopolis Zone. It's groovy! It's funky! It's got a Sonic CD vibe! And it's one hell of an Ear Worm!
  • Another Ear Worm is the theme of Mirage Saloon Zone. Fitting its Western theme, it layers traditional instruments (like trumpet, flute, piano, and even whistling) on top of a jamming dance beat.

    Sonic Forces 
  • The main theme of the game sounds amazing, as if it were made for an anime...and this is just the recently revealed instrumental version!

Side Games & Spin-Offs

    Dr. Robotnik's Mean Bean Machine (Genesis/Mega Drive) 
  • Exercise Mode's music (aka. "Sticker of Puyo Puyo") is a treat to the ears.
  • 1P Vs 2P Mode (aka. "Final of Puyo Puyo"). To quote the top comment: "Shifting beans as they fall is far more extreme and fun with this music." Fittingly, the "Danger" theme is a frantic techno remix of it.
  • The Stage 1-4 theme will forever play in your head.

    Sonic the Hedgehog 1/2 (Game Gear & Master System) 
Sonic the Hedgehog
  • Bridge Zone and Labyrinth Zone. There has been an effort to convert some of the songs into the Genesis version, so here's the same songs in that style (note that the latter uses the Sonic 3 drums).
    • The Scrap Brain & Sky Base music is great too.
    • How about the Act 2 Sky Base? Sure it loops after only about 15 seconds, but so did quite a few tunes in the Mario Universe.
  • It also helps that the soundtrack was composed by none other than Yuzo Koshiro, who did the impossible with the Genesis sound card by crafting the most epic video game soundtracks, EVER!
  • Jungle Zone is a nice song. It has a real Disney vibe to it.
  • The ending theme is one the most upbeat and happy ending tracks in the series.
  • The boss theme is super catchy, and some people actually prefer it to the Genesis boss theme.

Sonic the Hedgehog 2
  • The Green Hills (yes, that's hills with an S) Zone tune from the Sega Master System version of Sonic 2. It's "Sonic ~ You Can Do Anything" from the Japan/Europe version of Sonic CD! Even better is that Sonic CD was made – or at least came out – way after the Master System version of Sonic 2, so for Sonic CD they took a tune from a (probably) lesser-known Sonic game and turned it into a song. THAT is awesome.
  • The fast-paced Master System boss theme is also very good.
  • Underground Zone from the Game Gear/Master System version (from the first stage of the game, at that) is a great track that really exemplifies the speed of the series.
  • Scrambled Egg Zone.
  • Aqua Lake.
  • Bad Ending. *sniff*
  • Short, but oh so sweet, the Title Screen. If anything it sounds better than the same tune used in Sonic & Tails (a.k.a Sonic Chaos), which came out over a year later.
  • The Invincibility theme is one of the best in the series.

    Sonic Chaos 

    Sonic Triple Trouble 

    Sonic Spinball 
  • The Boss Theme tends to be overlooked but it's quite catchy!
  • Lava Powerhouse. Holy shit. Oh and the very catchy Toxic Caves, which is a great piece of music to start the first level with.
  • The options music often gets a bad rep, but it's still a great song.
    • That has largely to do (nowadays at least) with emulator issues that cause some of the synths in that tune to sound screwy. It sounds much better in the original Genesis cart (if you like that kind of music).

    Tails Adventure 

    Sonic Labyrinth 

    Knuckles' Chaotix 

    Sonic Blast 
Sonic Blast
  • Red Volcano Zone has a catchy tune with a sweet hip-hop rhythm that was pulled off pretty nicely despite the limits of the Game Gear/Master System sound chip.
  • Green Hill Zone deserves mention as well. It's probably the most beautifully composed opening zone song to appear on the Game Gear.

    Sonic 3D Blast 
Genesis/Mega Drive

Saturn & PC

    Sonic R 

    Sonic Shuffle 

    Sonic the Fighters 

    Sonic Advance series 
Sonic Advance

Sonic Advance 2

Sonic Advance 3

    Sonic Battle 

    Shadow the Hedgehog 

    Sonic Rush series 
Sonic Rush

Sonic Rush Adventure While Hideki Naganuma didn't return, the composers (Tomoya Ohtani, Mariko Nanba, Seirou Okamoto) did a good job of imitating his style while giving it their own spin.

    Sonic Riders series 
Sonic Riders

Sonic Riders: Zero Gravity

Sonic Free Riders


    Storybook Series 
Sonic and the Secret Rings

Sonic and the Black Knight

    Sonic Rivals series 

    Sonic Chronicles: The Dark Brotherhood 

    Sonic Boom 

    Sonic Runners 

Fan Games

     Sonic Robo Blast 2 
Good ol' SRB2 and its various mods contain some great music...

     Sonic the Hedgehog: Time Attacked 

    Sonic Before/After the Sequel 
Sonic Before the Sequel

First, here is a playlist of the soundtrack to Sonic: Before the Sequel.

Sonic After the Sequel



    Scrapped Games 
  • Designer Chris Senn was able to release concept music for the scrapped Sonic X-Treme game for the Sega Saturn. One theme, Space Queens, was posted on Youtube, and the poster had asked Senn to do an extended version of it. This was the result.
  • Sonic Crackers Options Song 1/Attraction Stage, the beta version of Electoria, Techno Tower's theme from Knuckles Chaotix. Has the "Walkin'" lobby theme mixed into the track and it sounds great.

    Fan Remixes 

  • Crush 40, who brought us all the awesome main theme songs for the Adventure-era games.
  • Sonic Team has featured a fantastic set of composers throughout the years. Let's throw a few names in, shall we?
    • Jun Senoue (Crush 40 guitarist; one of the main composers from Sonic 3 onward, as well of sound director for Adventure, Adventure 2, Heroes and Generations).
    • Tomoya Ohtani (Sound director for '06, Unleashed and Lost World).
    • Kenichi Tokoi (Sound director for Colors).
    • Fumie Kumatani (Best known for the Dn B tracks for the Shadow stages in Adventure 2).
    • Richard Jacques.
    • Howard Drossin.
    • Mariko Nanba.
    • Yutaka Minobe.
    • Hunnid P. If it's Knuckles, he did it.
    • Hideaki Kobayashi.
  • Julien K ("This Machine", "Waking Up").
  • Bentley Jones (a.k.a Lee Brotherton) is coming out nicely, what with his soothing tunes and remixes.
  • My Chemical Romance in the City Escape trailer for Generations. Yet more proof MCR are One of Us. Not to mention Kele in the original trailer.
  • Masato Nakamura, the man who gave us the original Green Hill Zone and started a franchise trend for Music of Awesome. Sonic the Hedgehog would not be the same if it weren't for his original compositions for the start of this series.
  • Just how much of Michael Jackson's work on Sonic the Hedgehog 3 made it into the final product is debated, but his influence is all over the soundtrack for the game.
  • Cash Cash should at least be mentioned for their theme for Colors, as well as their work remixing stuff for Generations. Their auto-tuney power-pop sound fits in the series quite nicely.
  • Vernian Process has done orchestral covers of all the level tracks from the first three Sonic games as well as a handful from Sonic CD. It goes without saying they're Ear Worms.
  • Zebrahead provided two versions of "His World".

    Non-Game media 
  • Robotnik's theme from Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog. Also the upbeat main theme.
  • The SATAM theme
  • Look-a-like, the theme of the Sonic OVA, which actually made it onto the True Colors album!
  • There's also Sonic X's Japanese opening, Sonic Drive.
    • The 4Kids dub's opening isn't half bad either; try Gotta Go Fast.
    • The Japanese ending is sad enough without lyrics or context. When you remember what events "Hikaru Michi" underscored, it becomes an automatic Tear Jerker.
    • The Italian opening: the lyrics are nothing special, but the dance-ish music is pretty catchy.
  • Sonic Underground's theme.
  • While admittedly goofy (they did "I'm Too Sexy", after all), the music video for the Right Said Fred song "Wonderman" contains various references to Sonic the Hedgehog. The song itself was used in advertisements for Sonic the Hedgehog 3.
  • Sonic Live In Sydney was a pretty corny show, but of all the songs in it, "Sonic, Thank You For Being You" probably stands out the most.
  • An honorary part of this page, Sonic Youth by Crush 40 sounds like it could have been the main theme of Generations. Its lyrics contain nods to much of the most famous Sonic songs, making it an awesome tribute to the soundtrack of the series. Some fans have even considered it an unofficial theme to Generations.
  • The Sonic REMIX! Album contains remixes of gems from the JPN/PAL version of the Sonic CD soundtrack.
    (Love you) She never really shows how much it means to her. (Sonic!)
    (Love you) She will be yours, and that's forever, rain or shine. (Sonic!)
    (Love you) There isn't anything she wouldn't do for you (Sonic!)
    (Love you) Long as you tell her - Sonic please, say you love her.
  • Sonic Boom's background music has a very Ren and Stimpy vibe that fits nicely with the comedy focus of the show.


    Mashups (Other Game Franchises) 

    Mashups (Other Franchises/TV Shows) 

Alternative Title(s): Sonic, Sonic Boom