PAYDAY 2 is the premier heisting simulator, and has some of the best pieces of music to play along to. While the developers of the game have made a lot of mistakes in the past, the music for this game certainly isn't one of them. The majority of the music is composed by the now-freelance Simon Viklund (who also voices Bain) and Carl Norén. In particular, the music that Viklund produces can range from anything; bass heavy-riffs, drums, old folk-style singing, freakin' opera!, while Norén tends to make bass-heavy tracks with techno thrown in, similar to that of PAYDAY: The Heist music.
The soundtrack is separated into two: one is for the in-game music, and another for the "B-sides" (music used in the trailers for the game), which can sometimes differ from their in-game counterparts. Also, the in-game music has 4 separate tracks ''per track'' (Stealth/Setup for the start of the heist (stealthing, before going loud); Control, for going loud or pauses between assault waves, Anticipation being for when the wave is about to begin, and Assault, the main part of the song that's played during the police assault.). It all depends on the where you are in the heist itself.
Keep in mind that the soundtrack DLC isn't updated nearly as often as the game itself is, as such there are tracks in the game that aren't available for download.
- Ode To Greed is an orchestral masterpiece, which makes any grand-scale heist even more epic to listen to. This version notably adds bass (and occasionally switches to Ominous Latin Chanting (Italian) at random during the heist).
- Utter Chaos is... well... utter chaos in terms of what instruments it uses. Despite the name, it has one of the tensest pieces of Stealth music in the game and sounds nothing like its bass-heavy Assault-counterpart. The Stealth portion instead opts to use nothing more than a violin and a drumset.
- Crime Wave 2015. A remake of the PAYDAY: The Heist song "Crime Wave". This version has lots of electronic instruments and drums, while the original was more mellow and focused less on bass.
- Home Invasion 2016. A remastering of the PAYDAY: The Heist song "Home Invasion", added with the Wolf Pack DLC. There is a lot more Dubstep and techno-bass in this version than its 2011 counterpart.
- "Death Row", a song introduced in October 2016 and the default theme for the Prison Nightmare heist. It's an intense, twisted theme that fits its level very well. Not composed by Viklund either, rather it was done by Carl Norén, who also created...
- "Donacdum". A Stupid Statement Dance Mix that was released for the Halloween Event in 2015. Its name derives from Houston's memetic "Don't act dumb!" quote. A lot of the other heisters' lines are also in this remix too, like Hoxton's "Don't answer back, you twat!" and Clover's "Hey you! Get on your feet!". Even Bain isn't immune to ridicule in this song, and can be heard saying "Whoaaaa!" at one point.
- Pulse, from the Hardcore Henry Heists. Considering the stakes of robbing a trainyard swarming with Murkywater goons, the music during the stealth portion is fittingly ominous and intense. Especially when you get to the top and the danger of being seen escalates. And if the alarm goes, the song abruptly shifts tone as if to say "Get the hell out of there!".
- Sweat. This part orchestral, part electric guitar, fast-paced track that makes you want to go as fast as possible while in the level was added in the Hardcore Henry Heists. It has electric guitar riffs to separate the orchestral parts from the guitar sections.
- Break The Rules. Added as part of the Scarface Mansion heist. A homage to Giorgio Moroder's score for the film, the Stealth music references "Tony's Theme" while the Assault part of the track turns into a full earworm in the style of the film's "Push It To The Limit" beat. There is also a random chance that a lyrics-filled version will take its place. Oh, and you'll want those lyrics to kick in...
- White Collar Crime. A house-band-esque 11 minute stealth-only track that sounds like it belongs on a late night talk show. It's also unique in that it's the only track to have 11 different portions as opposed to the usual 5 or 6 other tracks use. This is to accomodate for which objective you're on. It starts out slow, then instrumentation increases the closer you get to completing the heist. If you go loud (which will happen if the alarm is sounded), the instruments go completely nuts, and sound rushed.
- Stone Cold 2017, a remake of the PAYDAY: The Heist song "Stone Cold". This version however, is more electronic-focused and very akin to Welsh band Hybrid and Mick Gordon, while the original version is much darker and filled with intense drum noises.
- Double Cross 2017, a remake of the PAYDAY: The Heist song "Double Cross", having a mix of Bass and Electronic Music woven into the music, as well as a few drums to round it off. Has a lot of "electronic warping" on the assault phases.
- I Will Give You My All 2017, a dubstep remake of a B-Sides song used in promotional material in both PAYDAY 2 and PAYDAY: The Heist media. A fan favourite song that was used as the music for the Diamond Heist remake as the original song ("Breach of Security") was already remade for the Diamond heist back in 2015.
- Left in the Cold, the theme used for the Alaskan Deal heist. It excellently captures the cold environment and desperate situation you find yourself in.
- 8Bits are Scary, Cursed Kill Room's associated track, turns the tense and terrifying orchestral Clowns are Scary into a frantic Chiptune-electronic piece that perfectly suits Cursed Kill Room's time trial mechanic.
- Troubles Always Inbound. The theme used for Highland Mortuary as the Payday Gang try to get their bearings together and wonder how a run of the mill jewelry store job ended with Bain getting kidnapped and working with who they believed was the traitor. Taking reference from Stealers Wheel's "Stuck in the Middle with You", it captures the essence of a run-of-the-mill job gone horribly wrong or a stealthable heist that goes pear shaped quickly.
- Mr Purple. The name of the track is a reference to a former codename Cabot has used; "Mr. Purple", from Reservoir Dogs and was added in the update which adds the characters of Reservoir Dogs into Payday 2. The song itself has an '80s cop show action sequence feel to it.
- Underground Lockdown, the theme of Spring Break 2018's main heist: Henry's Rock. Also, notably, a piece not made by Simon or Carl, but by Gustavo Coutinho (who would later compose the soundtrack for Overkill's The Walking Dead). A DnB track that sounds nice and smooth in Stealth and Control, but when the Assault phase hits, it incorporates electronic and rock for a high-intensity blend: a perfect fit for a heist set in a top secret facility filled with ancient artifacts shrouded by conspiracies.
- Trick of the Trade, the track accompanying the Shaklethorne Auction heist, combines the electro-rock of Payday 2 music, throws in a church organ, and an overarching feeling that you're in far too deep to stop now.
- Operation Black Light, the piece made for the heists to end all heists: The White House. Notably, it was made by Le Castle Vania, who was behind the amazing nightclub gunfight tracks of both John Wick and John Wick: Chapter 2. It starts with downright creepy ambience during the Stealth sections, and gradually transitions to a tense military-like beat when things go loud, fitting the high stakes and Darker and Edgier tone of the game's Grand Finale.
- Ode All'Avidità, a story of one couple's greed about money (what else?), featuring Ominous Latin Chanting and lots of orchestral instruments. And opera. Oh so much opera.
- The Enforcer is a grunge-rock-bass piece of music used in The Overkill DLC Pack trailer. A variant of this track is also used in-game when opening a safe.
- PAYDAY Xmas Carol 2014, a collaboration remake of "The Twelve Days of Christmas" between many of the voice actors who work on Payday 2. The song starts out with Chains complaining about a drill, then gets increasingly ridiculous and more...messy as it goes on.
- "Freeze" is a haunting piano track from Payday 2's launch trailer that, when mixed with the still frames of the shootout between the Payday Gang and the cops, gives a melancholy sense of what these people are (and you, as a player, will be) going through. You can even use it for the victory screens if you want to.
- "Drifting" by Pat Briscoe (Simon Viklund), a track from The Dentist's trailer. It's a country-based track which is about regretting the questionable lifestyle the singer has chosen for himself (bank robbery, for example).
- "I'm A Wild One", again by Pat Briscoe (Simon Viklund), features in the Armored Transport trailer. Another country-based track, this one with much more upbeat lyrics about the singer's unstoppable free spirit.
- Miles Malone - This is Our Time, a track from the Hoxton Breakout trailer, is an uplifting blues song about the singer's triumphant return after a long absence.
- "It's Payday!" is a song styled similar to various anime theme songs, added during April Fools Day 2018. The Chanting in this song is made up of entries to a competition held back in 2015.