troperville

tools

toys


main index

Narrative

Genre

Media

Topical Tropes

Other Categories

TV Tropes Org
random
Villain Song: Music

  • "Taxman" by The Beatles plays with this trope. This song is about a Taxman singing of how he will take almost everything from you, how you should be thankful that he doesn't take ''everything'' from you, and also basically rubbing in your face how you can do nothing about it because you cannot work for anyone but him. However, it sounds like a hero song, with positive cries of Taxman! similar to cries of the names of heroes, like Batman!. However, the lyrics do nothing to hide the character's moral depravity.
    • Unlike most of the examples, this one's about a real-world villain - the "one for you, 19 for me" line refers to the 95% tax rates the Beatles were actually being charged. George Harrison didn't take it lightly.
    • Also by The Beatles, "Maxwell's Silver Hammer", a happy little ditty about a man who likes to Drop the Hammer on people's heads.
  • 'The Watchmaker's Apprentice' by the Clockwork Quartet is from the POV of a disgruntled ex-employee framing his boss for murder. As the song progresses, he gradually gets more and more unhinged.
    I rigged up a watch to do more than just chime,
    And I didn't balk once at the depth of my crime!
    The most perfect invention, that still kept impeccable time!
  • "Mack the Knife". adapted from the German Dreigroschenoper. Who knew so many wholesome 1950s singers could get away with singing gleefully about a spree killer and thief? (Not to mention that in the 1980s McDonald's famously adapted it - and some would say briefly covered it up - as "Mac Tonite.")
  • Tom Smith, writer of many famous Filk Songs, has had a musical called Skullrose And Tourmaline kicking around the back of his brain for years. He's written three songs so far: "Heat Of The Blood", "Ho! For The Death Of Time", and "This Ain't Over Yet." They're all Villain Songs.
  • Voltaire's "When You're Evil" fits this rather well while being generic enough to work for most any villain. Here's a video made using various Disney villains. See the Cartoons sections below for his other works.
    • A few others are "BRAINS!", "Almost Human" (a villain song for Lucifer, no less), "Ex Lover's Lover" and "Dead Girls".
  • Electric Six's "Naked Pictures (of Your Mother)" is about a government man using blackmail to get sex, "We Were Witchy Witchy White Women" is sung by evil witches, and Dick Valentine's side project Evil Cowards have "Love Pigs" and "Fixing Machines". "Watching Evil Empires Fall Apart" and "Steal Your Bones" are both subversions about Anti-Villains.
  • Janeen Brady's Standing Tall series - 12 tapes highlighting 12 virtues - includes the tape Gratitude, in which the most enjoyable song is the Rabbit's Villain Song close to the beginning. Of course, the song itself is Anvilicious, and the guy learns his lesson by the end and pulls a Heel-Face Turn, but hey:
    I never say thank you, I never intend
    Nobody likes me - but who needs a friend?
    I never say thank you, don't even know how
    And it's too late to change that now!
  • "Mordred's Lullaby" by Heather Dale is about Morgause singing a prophecy to her son about how he is going to be used to bring about King Arthur's destruction — and die in the process.
    • The song "Medusa" by Heather Dale may also be qualified as this. It is mostly about being yourself in the face of others, through the Point of View of Medusa. "My garden's full of pretty men who couldn't stay away."
    • "Joan", also by Heather Dale, can qualify depending on how you look at it. "I kill without consequence", after all.
    • "Crashing Down" is officially about Mordred convincing his men to rebel against King Arthur.
  • Iron Savior has a few songs exemplifying this, notably "Protect the Law", by the titular starship, and "Protector", about the now-quite-deranged creator of said titular starship. "Outcast in the void, now I'm stronger than before / Landed to retake the crown, your conqueror comes ashore!" The villain gets the best lines indeed.
  • Ra's song Parole, is about the P.O.V. character leaving prison to pursue what is presumably an ex who is the reason he was put away to begin with. The lines include, "I called your mom and she told me/That you're afraid of me," and "I won't be disregarded/I won't be turned away/We'll finish up what you started/You're gonna pay today."
  • Living Colour's "Cult of Personality" is about Exactly What It Says on the Tin.
  • Jonathan Coulton loves this trope. "Skullcrusher Mountain" (sung by a generic supervillain) may be the best example, but "Re: Your Brains" (zombies), "I Crush Everything" (some sort of kraken), "The Future Soon" (somebody who hopes to grow up to be a cyborg supervillain), and of course "Still Alive" (the evil AI from Portal) all qualify.
    • The kraken is evil? He's more sympathetic, like the vampire in "Blue Sunny Day". "Skullcrusher Mountain" is really a Villain Love Song... but the other ones, definitely. Also, don't forget "I'm a Mason Now" - while not inherently villainous, it's certainly vengeful and gloating.
    • The villainy of the kid from "The Future Soon" is also debatable - he announces his intentions to end world hunger, but then soon starts talking about how his robots are probably going to start a war on Earth and he'll end up kidnapping the girl he has a crush on when she rejects him. It's possible that the latter parts are just the painful reality that he'll always be a loser intruding on his otherwise nice fantasy.
  • "Live" by Paul and Storm is all about a mad scientist's desire to create an undead bride. Though it's arguably the villagers who are more villainous as they burst in and kill him as he and his bride finally get to be together.
    • It's worth noting that Paul and Storm wrote this song as a parody of Jonathan Coulton's songs in the same vein. His response was to write a song parodying their music, called "Big Dick Farts a Polka".
  • Lordi's Blood Red Sandman falls under here.
    • Considering Lordi's stage act, this is pretty much par for the course for them — a band of monsters, singing about the things that make them monstrous. Examples can be readily found on every album of theirs so far.
  • Beelzeboss by Tenacious D (featuring Dave Grohl from The Foo Fighters as Satan). See also the Lion King version, just for giggles.
  • "Trouble" by Elvis Presley kind of counts.
  • Ayreon's The Human Equation has Day 16: Loser, which is basically the protagonist imagining his father (named Father, for simplicity's sake) showing up to gloat about how much of a failure the protagonist is, throwing various insults at him and claiming that even though he's constantly sued by his exes and half his kids are in jail, he still always comes out on top. It doesn't fit the formula perfectly, but it certainly gets the over the top gloating tone perfectly.
  • Ignorance is Bliss by Jellyfish is sung from the perspective of Bowser.
  • "Behind Blue Eyes" by The Who is a lament from the perspective of an (anti-) villainous character, and was intended to be the theme song for the antagonist in a Rock Opera planned by Pete Townsend.
  • Doctor Steel is the embodiment of this trope. Almost every song he produces is from the viewpoint of Well-Intentioned Extremist Mad Scientist Dr. Steel. Particularly "Back and Forth" which is designed as hypnotic propaganda, and "Ode to Revenge" in which he laments the state of society, and calls up his legion of followers (Toy Soldiers) to "burn it all down".
  • Alice Cooper's songs are kind of like this, especially "Black Widow" and "Devil's Food".
    • Of particular note is "Nothing's Free" which serves as the villain song for The Showman of his concept album "The Last Temptation" and the Neil Gaiman penned comic of the same name.
  • The metal band Sabaton, who have a lot of songs about historical battles, has done a few that are clearly done from the perspective of the side they wouldn't support. The most obvious examples are Stalingrad and We Burn (the latter is about the Yugoslavian Civil War).
  • "The Rake's Song' from The Decemberists' Rock Opera "The Hazards of Love" is sung by an unrepentant murderer who killed his three children. The jealous forest queen's song "The Queen's Rebuke" as well as the Rake's lines in "Margaret in Captivity" may also count, though it's his solo song that really stands out.
  • Supervillain by Powerman 5000.
  • "Don't Mess With Me" by Temposhark.
  • "Sympathy for the Devil" by The Rolling Stones. As you can expect, it takes on a Sympathetic P.O.V..
  • "Iron Man" by Black Sabbath is about a man who becomes unable to speak and then revenges mankind because of this, killing everyone. In fact, Black Sabbath only used the name "Iron Man" because the song is about a villain; otherwise they would have been sued by Marvel Comics.
    • Of course, Marvel then licensed the song and repurposed it as a Hero Song for the movie of the same title... but making sure that the lyrics weren't there.
  • "Police Truck" by the Dead Kennedys, about a group of Dirty Cops that take the title vehicle out for a night of drinking, beating up drunks and gang-raping a prostitute.
  • The song "Un Mauvais Dieu" ("A Bad God") from French Hip-Hop group Manau tells in it's intro the story an evil deity trapped below the earth by the druids, foretold to return at the dawn of the year 2000. The actual song is the aforementioned evil god bragging about how dark and sinful he is, and how he will bring hatred and suffering to the Earth once he is free.
  • The Protomen have given one to their version of Dr. Wily with "The Hounds". He spends half the song gloating about framing Dr. Light for murder. For something that seems to depict just how much of a sociopath Wily is, it's an absolute Ear Worm with a tune that one can dance to.
    • It also explains part one of his totalitarian state, which is "a giant screen in the middle of town everyone can see and hear, constantly barraging the populace with misinformation and propaganda." So basically, you standard dictatorship, but more high tech.
    • Unlike most villain songs, Wily doesn't pull this out while there's still any chance of his plan being stopped. He waits until his victory is essentially secured.
  • They Might Be Giants like this trope. For example, there's "Kiss Me, Son of God", sung from the perspective of a Corrupt Corporate Executive Villain with Good Publicity:
    "I built a little empire out of
    Some crazy garbage called the blood of the
    Exploited working class
    But they've overcome their shyness,
    Now they're calling me 'Your Highness'
    And the world screams,
    'Kiss me, Son of God!'"
    • A few more examples: "Reprehensible", "Hall Of Heads" (commonly interpreted to be about Princess Mombi (or Princess Langwidere from the book version) of Return to Oz), "No One Knows My Plan" and "I'm Your Boyfriend Now" (named after a Freddy Krueger line).
  • Dream Theater's "Home" from their brilliant album "Metropolis Pt 2: Scenes from a Memory" follows this trope. The song contains a section where it is revealed through soliloquy that the character named "the Miracle" is actually in love with his brother's girlfriend and is sleeping with her. He laments that despite the shame he feels, he will find a way to tear them apart so that he can have Victoria. In fact, the whole song is about the two brother's different sins while the narrator of the whole story remains oblivious to the truth. Its a powerful song.
  • Symphony X has an entire album of these with their latest release, Paradise Lost, unsurprising as most of the songs are from the point of view of Lucifer. Almost every single song is a Villain Song from Lucifer, with the only exception being the opening and 'The Sacrifice'.
  • Pain of Salvation's 2004 concept album "Be" features a few of these, most notably "Dea Pecuniae", in which the villainous character sings about how he got rich through cut-throat duplicity, before it becomes a duet between him and the very voice of his dark desires.
  • Many Finntroll songs are Villain songs, given that they're mostly about trolls eating people, sung from the point of view of the trolls.
  • I Wanna Be Evil by Eartha Kitt is about a Girl Next Door who is convinced that Evil Is Sexy and wants to set aside her frills and become a Femme Fatale.
  • Mister Bad Example by Warren Zevon.
    I'm proud to be a glutton, and I don't have time for sloth
    I'm greedy, and I'm angry, and I don't care who I cross
    I'm Mr. Bad Example, intruder in the dirt
    I like to have a good time, and I don't care who gets hurt
    I'm Mr. Bad Example, take a look at me
    I'll live to be a hundred, and go down in infamy
  • Mirdautas Vras by Summoning, a villainous fanfare that provides the crowning track of their Oath Bound album, and written in Black Speech no less. Translated excerpt:
    Northwards ride on a thousand orcs,
    On wolves with giant bloody fangs;
    They take the storm and power
    Of Mordor through the world!
    Fire and ice - the Nazgūl fly!
    It is a good day to kill!
    Painted red is earth and sky -
    Even Manwe shall bow down!
  • In the continuity of Coheed and Cambria's concept albums, Al the Killer's "I Want" Song triple feature, The Velorium Camper. Most notably The Velorium Camper I:Faint of Hearts
  • Arguably, I Can't Decide by the Scissor Sisters, since it is Foe Yay in song form. It's about a guy who is contemplating if they should kill the person they are singing too.
  • "Villain Song" by Kirby Krackle.
    • Despite the title, the song is actually about a villain announcing retirement as opposed to about how he's going to kill everything. Or at least, it is until the final verse.
  • The punk/cabaret act World/Inferno Friendship Society have "Fiend in Wien", a raucous villain song from the perspective of Hitler about his awful youth and how he came to see the world as shit. Considering the band's main hero is Peter Lorre and they're a bunch of anarchists, it's more sarcastic than anything else.
    • "Lust for Timing" from The True Story of the Bridgewater Astral League is sung by the League's leader, Jon Gilch, as he gloats over his luck and apparent invincibility while heading a crime syndicate. The previous song, "Incendiarism", is sung by the League as a whole while in the process of joyfully stealing cars with the foolproof alibi of being asleep at the time. However, the musical casts the BWAL members sympathetically rather than as hardened criminals, especially in the second act.
  • Chainsaw Charlie (Murders in the New Morgue) by W.A.S.P., which is sung from the perspective of a Corrupt Corporate Executive.
  • What's the only way Gorillaz could top making Mos Def their band's Big Bad, you ask? SWEEPSTAKES! You're a winner! That's how. Not to mention their previous song "Murdoc Is God".
  • Cowboy music group Riders in the Sky do a song called Someone's got to do it! in which a pair of b-movie villains sing about how the story needs then to work.
  • Kamelot's Epica has "Descent of the Archangel", in which Ariel, the album's protagonist, is about to kill himself in despair over the fact that his search for the meaning of life went fruitless for years when Mephisto approaches him and offers him the resources to continue his search in exchange for his soul.
    • And then there's "March of Mephisto" from The Black Halo which is essentially gloating over Helena's death and how this will aid Mephisto's plan to win Ariel's soul and re-enter heaven.
  • Pick a GWAR song. Chances are good that it's probably one of these, either about the band or one of their many enemies.
  • Lupe Fiasco's got quite a few for the characters he created in his rap songs. Here's three:
    • The Cool
    • The Coolest
      • The Die, which actually is about the villain's death.
  • You're kidding...you posted about the friggin' HERO of the story compared to The Game!
    • Let Me Put You On Game is one of the most evil rap songs you will ever hear, starting with an evil laugh and ending with a gunshot.
      • When read, the first line doesn't sound too bad. "Don't you know that I run this place? That I've begun this race? Must I rerun this pace? I'm the reason it's become this way, and their love for it is the reason I have become this praised...
      • But then the rest plays out: "They...love my darkness...I'll make 'em heartless...and in return, they have become my martyrs..."
  • "Career of Evil" by Blue Oyster Cult has it right there in the title.
  • "House Party at Arkham Asylum" by The Great Luke Ski is sung by The Joker.
  • MC Frontalot 's "Final Boss", which is sung from the perspective of, predictably enough, the final boss.
  • Savatage likes to make use of this trope on their Rock Opera albums.
    • Streets: A Rock Opera has the song "Agony and Ecstasy", which is also part BSOD Song. The villain portion represents the knowledge that drugs destroyed DT once, cannot do anything to help him, but he still longs for them.
    • Dead Winter Dead has two: "I Am" is human selfishness and greed turning people against each other, "Doesn't Matter Anyway" is for the Arms Dealers getting rich off the war and don't give a damn about ideology or politics of their buyers.
    • The Wake of Magellan has "Complaint in the System", the Irish mobsters and drug dealers have created a status quo that benefits them and will protect it.
  • Club Villain, by Your Favorite Martian.
  • Bigg Milt's newest rap "what's going on" is a rather strange version of this trope, instead of being sung from the point of view of a actual person, it's actually sung from the point of the drug dope, claiming he is the real terror in the world and even says God Is Evil the wrote about him in the Bible.
  • David Bowie examples:
    • "Please Mr. Gravedigger" (1967 Self-Titled Album) starts with the singer sarcastically addressing the gravedigger, who's also a grave robber...but then he reveals that the reason he's been able to witness these crimes is because he keeps visiting the grave of a little girl he murdered, and he's got a grave ready for the gravedigger to go into.
    • "Running Gun Blues" (The Man Who Sold the World) is sung by a soldier who no longer has a war to fight, but (being Ax-Crazy) decides to just keep killing people. As the song begins, he's "cut twenty-three down since Friday".
  • The Megas have crafted many a Villain Song for the various and sundry Robot Masters, as well as a couple for Doctor Wily himself.
  • God Himself gets in on the action in Faust by Randy Newman, singing "How Great Our Lord", with a wonderfully slimy performance by James Taylor. Newman himself sings the Devil's parts; the most straightforward Villain Song from him is probably "Can't Keep A Good Man Down", where he plots to return to Heaven by winning a (heavily stacked) wager with God.
  • The Toadies' "Possum Kingdom", sung by a serial killer (or vampire, depending on your interpretation) to his victim.
  • Blind Guardian's "Ride Into Obsession" is an introduction to the two opposing main characters of the Wheel of Time series... from the viewpoint of the villain of course! Keep in mind, the quoted section is merely the opening.
    "Come, I'll show you the end.
    You're damned, 'cause no-one can defy me!
    Just watch these maddened creatures,
    Like you they all once reached out,
    A war to win,
    But I'm gonna burn their vision down!"
  • "Skeletons on Parade" by Ludo counts, going from lighthearted parody to creepy in the span of about a minute.
  • Iced Earth has The Dark Saga, based on Spawn, with three - The Last Laugh by Malebolgia, Violate by Violator, and The Hunter by Angela pre-Heel-Face Turn. There's also Vengeance is Mine, which is more like a The Villain Sucks Song that Spawn sings to Billy Kincaid, but the measures he takes are gruesome.
  • Pretty much any song written by Wednesday 13, be it with the Murderdolls, Bourbon Crow, Frankenstein Drag Queens from Planet 13, Gunfire 76, or his self-named band. Some gems include:
    • "Love at First Fright," a love song toward Reagan from The Exorcist, sung from the point of view of the demon possessing her.
    • "A Dead Body," an outlaw country song about being too drunk to dig a shallow grave at the roadside.
    • "All-American Massacre." Exactly What It Says on the Tin.
  • Craig by Stephen Lynch, about Jesus' Jerk Jock brother Craig Christ who spends his time partying it up unlike his pussy brother and his gay little buddies.
    Jesus was our mothers fave,
    All her love to him she gave.
    But there's no sibling rivalry,
    When he's nailed to that tree...
  • A lot of Vocaloid songs qualify, in particular we have:
  • From the Evillious Chronicles there are plenty, comes with having multiple villains.
    • Every song in the Seven Deadly Sins series is this, with the main character being a villain acting out a respective sin.
    • Special mention goes to The Lunacy of Duke Venomania, where the titular Duke gloats freely about his conquest of multiple women using supernatural means.
    • Master of the Graveyard is the Villain Song of the titular master, though sung mostly by her servants about how she eats everything.
  • Disturbed has Inside the Fire, in which the devil tries to convince the grieving David Draiman to give up his soul and be with his girlfriend in hell.
  • Heavy metal band Iron Maiden have a lot, helped by songs that takes a lot of historical and\or literature roots:
  • Brown Bird has the song Blood of Angels, with the chorus:
    "You could be right, they might come for me at night
    in angry mobs with torches bright outside my door
    for all my spite, I might never win the fight
    but I will rage against the light forever more."
  • Rush's concept album Clockwork Angels has one in "The Anarchist".
  • Kanye West's Power is basically about an all powerful celebrity getting off on how much people hate him.
  • Hey There Cthulhu is a song sung by Cthulhu cultist who's being driven insane and wants to bring about the end of the world.
  • Pepe Deluxe, Queen of the Wave, "A Night and a Day". The liner notes describe the subject as "a poetic synopsis" of Mainin's descent into "destroy the world"-tier villainy, and the lyrics don't suggest even a hint of regret.
  • Trans-Siberian Orchestra's third Christmas album, The Lost Christmas Eve features "What Is Christmas?", sung by a Scrooge-like character whom an embittered businessman agrees with.
  • Peter Gabriel's "Intruder", an "I Am" Song about a sexual predator who breaks into a woman's house at night, cuts the phone lines, smells her clothing, and eventually "leaves his mark", all while relishing her helplessness and terror as she lies awake.
  • Metallica has many songs about soldiers slaughtering others and people losing their minds and doing evil. For more explicit examples, "Jump in the Fire" is sung by the Devil.
  • Slayer's "Angel of Death", about Josef Mengele.
  • Judas Priest's "Electric Eye", about a spy satelite ensuring that Big Brother Is Watching.
  • Pink Floyd has three in a row from The Wall; In The Flesh, Run Like Hell and Waiting For The Worms, representing the character of Pink's fall to Neo-Nazism.
  • "Space Lord" by Monster Magnet.
  • The title track of Gilby Clarke's Pawnshop Guitars:
    "Your Momma says I'm evil, and I cut like a knife
    You cut a little deep, find the devil inside
    Now burn little honey, I hypnotize
    I'm so mean, so mean, so mean
    I'm so mean, so mean, so mean

    I'm a motorcycle cowboy, a honky tonk junkie
    Fallen shooting star.
    Broken desperado on the wrong side of the barrel
    My best friend's a pawnshop guitar."
  • "A Criminal Mind" by Canadian artist Lawrence Gowannote  is from the perspective of an unrepentant convict.
  • Michael Longcor's done several. Most notably, the epic Falconsbane -
    "For I know life is never pretty - and no fight is ever fair
    And the power and the glory go to those with strength and flair
    Those who cross me never prosper, those who threaten end up dead
    I don't get mad - I don't get even - I make sure I get ahead!"
    • But also "Valley Forge", from the point of view of an agitator calling for desertion from the Revolutionary Army in the coldest winter of the war, "Sharks of the Open Sea," an epic pirate song, and, arguably, "When Tenskwatawa Sings," which is either this or an Angry Mob Song depending on how you feel about William Henry Harrison, the 9th President of the United States -
    "The French Whites came to the Shawnee tribes bringing furs to take and trade
    And the British gave guns and bought the scalps of Americans we'd raid
    Now Harrison comes by the river-side runs crying "justice" he will bring
    But Tecumseh speaks and the people rise when we hear Tenskwatawa sing!
  • Ookla the Mok had a song called Suprema Lex, which consisted of Lex Luthor singing about his hatred of Superman and how he would one day defeat him. Also an example of The Hero Sucks Song.

  • "Arsonist's Lullaby" by Hozier tells the story of a guy who simply is driven to set things on fire and how he got to be that way, as described from his own perspective. It may not be right, but he acknowledges that it's just who he is. As the chorus explains:
    "All you have is your fire
    And the place you need to reach
    Don't you ever tame your demons
    But always keep them on a leash"

  • St. Jimmy by Green Day from American Idiot. While he's not completely a villain and really Johnny's drug fueled id, it's his grand entrance and him introducing himself.

  • "Teenagers", by My Chemical Romance. It doesn't sound like one at first, just a punk/emo kid ranting about the world around him, but after the second verse, you realize this kid is probably [[about to start a school shooting Axes at School]].
  • Madonna has "Back In Business" from her Dick Tracy soundtrack album I'm Breathless, probably reflecting her character in the film "Breathless" Mahoney. Surprisingly, a different song called "Back In Business" appears in the movie instead of Madonna's version.
Live-Action TVVillain SongOpera

random
TV Tropes by TV Tropes Foundation, LLC is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available from thestaff@tvtropes.org.
Privacy Policy
74445
34