The Best EDM Workout Music for Your Next Sweat Session
Looking to crank up your workout? It’s electronic dance time. EDM will help you keep a steady pace on your run (BTW, download these 10 songs for a speedier run) or motivate you to go Above & Beyond (pun intended) no matter which workout you choose.
Start with cardio: Get pumped with the Bloody Beetroots’ “Chronicles of a Fallen Love.” Take it higher with the classic “Levels” by Avicii, the soaring “Sweet Nothing” from Florence of Florence and the Machine, and finish strong with “Clarity” by Zedd. Turn it over to weight training or mat work with “Latch” and “Holdin’ On,” followed by “Barricade” and “Under Control.” Cool down with “Summer” and “Peace of Mind,” and get grounded again with “Colors” and “Ghosts ‘n’ Stuff.” Your body and mind will be ready for anything, come rest or rage-fest. (Related: How to Craft the Ultimate Dance Party–Inspired Running Playlist)
Since 128 beats per minute (BPM) is the dominant tempo in EDM, virtually everything in the genre (and in this playlist) hovers within a few beats of this pace. The advantages of this tempo are two-fold: It’s quick enough to keep you moving and has a consistency that’ll let you slip into a rhythm easily. Now all you need are the perfect picks of EDM workout music to get you moving. Download ‘em below. (And now that you have your tunes picked out, it’s time to learn how to create your own muscle-building workout plan to go with your music.)
- A-Trak & Andrew Wyatt – Push
- Kaskade – Never Sleep Alone
- Avicii – Addicted to You (Albin Myers Remix)
- Cash Cash – Surrender
- Martin Garrix & Usher – Don’t Look Down
- Steve Aoki, Chris Lake, Tujamo & Kid Ink – Delirious (Boneless)
- Mako & Madison Beer – I Won’t Let You Walk Away
- Alesso & Tove Lo – Heroes (We Could Be)
- Armin van Buuren & Trevor Guthrie – This is What It Feels Like (Antillas & Dankann Remix)
- Calvin Harris & Ellie Goulding – Outside
- Disclosure & Sam Smith – Latch
- Calvin Harris – Summer
- Calvin Harris & Florence Welch – Sweet Nothing
- Armin van Buuren & Trevor Guthrie – This Is What It Feels Like
- The Bloody Beetroots & Greta Svabo Beach – Chronicles of a Fallen Love
- Halsey – Colors (Audien Remix)
- Flume – Holdin’ On
- Hardwell – Run Wild (Feat. Jake Reese)
- Axwell – Barricade
- Tiesto – The Right Song
- Steve Aoki – Boneless
- Avicii – Levels
- Avicii, Nicky Romero – I Could Be The One
- Above & Beyond – Peace of Mind (Arty Remix)
- Calvin Harris, Alesso, & Hurts – Under Control
- Alesso vs. OneRepublic – If I Lose Myself
- OneRepublic & Alesso – Calling (Losing My Mind)
- Zedd & Foxes – Clarity
- Deadmau5 & Kaskade – I Remember
- Deadmau5 & Rob Swire – Ghosts ‘n’ Stuff
- By Chris Lawhorn and Megan Soll
The Chemical Brothers Made A 15,000 BPM Remix For F1
Electronic music duo the Chemical Brothers might have just set a record with the fastest remix of all time, clocking in at a ridiculous 15,000 bpm. Called “WGTT 15000BPM F1 NEEEUM MIX,” the track is a beyond-compressed remix of their track “We’ve Got to Try” from their upcoming album No Geography. According to ESPN, the insane remix was made for a Formula One promotion, and mimics the same number of revs per minute, or RPM, that a modern F1 race car is capable of.
To frame just how insanely fast that is, consider that the human ear can only distinguish the range of tempos between 40 and 300 bpm. Anything slower and it becomes impossible for us to discern a set tempo. Anything faster than 300 bpm blurs together. So it makes sense that this remix is only three seconds long. And if you do the math, that’s 750 beats in just three seconds.
Check out this bizarre novelty of song — if we can even call it a song.
NEEEUM: The fastest remix of all time
WGTT15000BPM F1 NEEEUM MIX by @ChemBros#F1 #TheChemicalBrothers #NEEEUM pic.twitter.com/yslEhhino9
— Formula 1 (@F1) March 7, 2019
Clocking in at 1000bpm, extratone is electronic music’s fastest genre.
In a new, in-depth feature from Bandcamp Daily, writer and regular DJ Mag freelancer Dave Jenkins dives headfirst into the ferocious world of extratone, a style of electronic music said to be the world’s fastest music genre, with tracks regularly clocking in the 1,000bpm range and reaching levels of up to 10,000bpm.
While not an entirely fresh sound, extratone is widely new to most electronic music fans. Its history can be traced back to the days of hardcore and gabber in the ‘90s, with its biggest influence stemming from the speedcore subgenre.
Beyond the extremely high bpm counts, extratone is characterized by its “tonal” sound. “When kick drums are structured at such fast tempos (usually as quarter notes or 16ths),” wrote Jenkins, “the pneumatic sledgehammer style of beats associated with most ultra-fast music genres no longer exist. Instead, it’s a buzzing textural, tonal trip. At its most uncompromised, extratone perplexes the senses (see the work of Gabberdoom). But there are many examples of more melodic elements within the genre (also see the work of The Quick Brown Fox). A long-standing tradition of any extreme form of music, the real essence of the style is found within the brutal balance of contrasts.”
Many in the extratone community credit Belgian artist DJ Einrich as the genre’s founder, with his work in the late ‘90s serving as the movement’s sonic blueprint.
“By combining two German words, extrahieren (to extract) and tone (note), he came up with extratone,” said leading extratone artist Ralph Brown of DJ Einrich in the feature. “A subgenre where bpm are so crammed that they almost appear like extra-dimensional. So Einrich turned his name into Einrich 3,600 bpm (the perfect number of bpm according to him) and started to release tracks via his own Immer Schneller Records.”
“Extratone is basically a form of extreme sound art,” said Rick, a London-based artist and label owner of Slime City, who also goes by the artist aliases Zara Skumshot and Skat Injector. “It’s not about pounding kicks, but kicks so fast they have morphed into a tonal beast. They’ve mutated into a whole different animal. A natural process of evolution.”
Like most niche genres, extratone lays claim to a small yet dedicated following, with many members from its community taking a DIY approach when experimenting with the sound and creating new styles like mash-up extratone, minimal extratone, noise extratone and more, according to the piece.
Learn more about extratone via the Introduction to Extratone feature on Bandcamp Daily, and listen to some choice extratone tracks below.
For more high-bpm goodies, read our feature on the return of jungle and read our investigation into the UK’s jump-up drum & bass revival.
Screenshot taken from ‘LEGS – NET 110: Intact Hypervessel’ album cover from Gridbug/Legs Akimbo Records via Bandcamp.
10 Fast Tracks for Your Running Playlist
It’s tough to find songs in the Top 40 with quicker tempos than 132 BPM. There are a number of reasons for this, but a lot of it has to do with dancing. If a song is too fast, people are less likely to dance to it, which means DJs are less likely to play it in the clubs. And club play is one of the things radio programmers consider most when deciding which new songs to put on the air. To that end, pop artists know that they’re more likely to crack the charts if their songs are between 80 and 132 BPM.
Why should you care about the connection between dancing, clubs, and radio play? Because it means that most hit singles are too slow for your average workout. This playlist focuses on those rare tracks that managed to creep onto the airwaves with tempos of 140 BPM or faster. Try a few during your next run and you might notice a difference in your total distance.
Here’s the full playlist:
Jonas Brothers – Pom Poms – 148 BPM
The Killers – Mr. Brightside – 148 BPM
Bruno Mars – Locked out of Heaven – 146 BPM
Kings of Leon – Sex on Fire – 150 BPM
Phoenix – 1901 – 144 BPM
Cascada – Everytime We Touch – 142 BPM
The Ting Tings – That’s Not My Name – 145 BPM
Flux Pavilion & Childish Gambino – Do or Die – 145 BPM
Macklemore, Ryan Lewis & Ray Dalton – Can’t Hold Us – 148 BPM
DJ Khaled, T-Pain, Ludacris, Snoop Dogg & Rick Ross – All I Do Is Win – 150 BPM
To find more workout songs, check out the free database at Run Hundred. You can browse by genre, tempo, and era to find the best songs to rock your workout.
- By Chris Lawhorn
The secret math behind feel-good music
Why do songs like Queen’s “Don’t Stop Me Now” make people feel so happy? (iStock) By Meeri Kim October 30, 2015
From toddlers bopping along to the latest pop hit to grandparents rediscovering the songs from their long-lost youth, listening to music has the power to stir our emotions at any age.
Scientists have long known about the influence of music on mood, even using pop songs like New Order’s “Bizarre Love Triangle” and Sinéad O’Connor’s “Nothing Compares 2 U” to arouse joy or sadness in subjects during psychological studies. But why do certain combinations of sounds have such a strong effect on the way we feel? How does the brain translate music into an emotion?
In an effort to find some answers, a Dutch neuroscientist has tackled the analysis of one very specific type of music: the feel-good song. Jacob Jolij, an assistant professor in cognitive psychology and neuroscience at the University of Groningen, has come up with a mathematical formula that describes the anatomy of these songs in order to investigate why they make us feel so warm and fuzzy inside. Using a database containing 126 of the most popular feel-good songs from the last 50 years, Jolij applied statistical methods to see which characteristics of these tunes are responsible for their good vibes.
“I looked at the scientific literature in terms of what makes us feel good — primarily tempo and key,” he said. “So I went through all the scores and sheet music from the songs to look at key and tempo, but also lyrics. Then I tried to fit a regression model, a mathematical technique, to see which songs could be listed as feel-good.”
The project was commissioned by British consumer electronics brand Alba, who surveyed 2,013 adults in the United Kingdom on whether they use music to uplift their mood and which feel-good songs they preferred from several decades. To take the results a step further, Alba sought out a researcher that could tinker with the database of responses and output a mathematical formula for the ultimate feel-good song.
Jolij’s final equation of Feel Good Index (FGI) includes the sum of all positive references in the lyrics, the song’s tempo in beats per minute and its key. The higher a song’s FGI, the more feel-good it is predicted to be. Happy lyrics, a fast tempo of 150 beats per minute (the average pop song has a tempo of 116 beats per minute), and a major third musical key all help create music we perceive as brimming with positive emotion.
“The number one feel-good song is ‘Don’t Stop Me Now’ by Queen — it’s quite a bit faster than the average song, plus it’s in a major key that works quite well, and if you look at the lyrics, they are very positive,” said Jolij. ” ‘Don’t Stop Me Now’ is an excellent example of a feel-good song.”
Even in the complete absence of lyrics, music can carry powerful emotional connotations. Beats automatically activate motor areas of the brain, according to magnetic resonance imaging studies, and propel our bodies to move spontaneously to the rhythm. Therefore, fast-tempo songs are directly associated with more energy, movement, and dancing, which are typically linked to being in a joyful state.
However, other characteristics of music such as key are not as well-understood.
“That’s a bit of a mystery, why we assign major chords with positive emotions and minor chords with negative emotions. There’s definitely an element of learned association, although there are some people who claim it’s more of a biological thing,” said Jolij. “It’s still one of the big questions in musicology.”
Despite the open questions, there is little debate about the intertwining relationship between music and emotion — and therefore, music can indirectly influence our perception and actions. As part of a 2014 experiment, smokers were made to look at negative imagery while listening to Bartok’s “The Miraculous Mandarin” and Prokofiev’s “Battle on the Ice” — looming, frenetic and harsh classical pieces that stir up feelings of uneasiness and anxiety within the listener — then rated their levels of cigarette craving. Participants craved a smoke to a much greater extent after the experiment, despite having just had one.
Another study from 2014 looked at the potential power of music to soothe away symptoms of road rage, finding that low-energy songs significantly decreased systolic blood pressure during a simulated traffic jam. So while easygoing songs like The Temptations’ “Just My Imagination” had this calming effect on drivers, peppy tunes such as Depeche Mode’s “Just Can’t Get Enough” did not.
Jolij’s own research focuses on certain factors — including musical sound — that influence how humans perceive their surrounding environment. In his 2011 study published in PLOS ONE, he had subjects listen to music clips before taking on a difficult visual task, where they had to pick out a hidden face within a very grainy image. The experiment was designed to investigate how music-induced moods can rub off on our visual perception.
“We found music to be a very effective way to manipulate mood,” Jolij said. “When they were happy, they were better at recognizing happy faces, and when they were sad, they were better at seeing sad faces. Being in a good mood actually helps your brain pick up positive information.”
Instead of running the risk of not catering to all his subjects’ tastes, he asked them to bring in their own mood-stimulating music instead of choosing the same songs for everyone. Jolij emphasizes that we have a strong tendency to attach memories to certain pieces of music — for instance, first dance songs at a wedding, songs famously featured in movies, or music introduced to us by specific people.
“Many people brought classical music to make them sad, in particular ‘Requiem’ by Mozart, saying this was played at the funeral of a friend or relative, or they would bring in music that they always listened to with an ex-lover,” said Jolij. “I can come up with this feel-good formula and give you the perfect feel-good song, but it does not take into account the associations you have with the song. It can’t predict your feel-good song, but I can predict what 1,000 people on average would say is their favorite.”
Here are the top 10 feel-good songs according to the formula:
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