Top 10 Radiohead Songs

Formed in 1985 in Oxfordshire, England, Radiohead first found fame during the grunge movement. But it was their ability to expand their sound and experiment with different genres and styles that has turned them into a band that continues to be critically and commercially successful today. For this list, we’ve chosen our entries based on a combination of the artist’s fan favorites and their most commercially successful songs. Join WatchMojo.com as we count down the top 10 Radiohead songs. Special thanks to our users liamguitarmandwyer15, Alex Lefebvre and yannickwolfe for submitting the idea on our Suggest Page at WatchMojo.comsuggest
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They’re so very special. Welcome to WatchMojo.com, and today we are counting down the top 10 Radiohead songs.

For this list, we’ve chosen our entries based on a combination of the artist’s fan favorites and their most commercially successful songs.

#10: “Idioteque”
Kid A (2000)


It may not have been released as a single, but this five-minute track continues to be a fan and critic favorite. Why? By mixing elements of electronica and intelligent dance music with frontman Thom Yorke’s abstract lyrics, Radiohead gave “Idioteque” a doomsday feel that makes it unique among the band’s work and music in general. It’s since become a live staple.

#9: “No Surprises”
OK Computer (1997)


Despite its title, OK Computer’s third single is actually quite surprising. With its dream pop flavors, Ed O’Brien’s crystal-clear guitar sound, Jonny Greenwood’s glockenspiel and Yorke’s soft-spoken vocals, “No Surprises” is a more complex and layered track than it initially appears to be. The top 5 UK hit was also accompanied by a memorable music video with Yorke’s head being slowly submerged in water.

#8: “Creep”
Pablo Honey (1993)


Mainstream audiences were introduced to Radiohead’s alternative rock sound with their first-ever single in the early 1990s. Taken off their debut album Pablo Honey, “Creep” follows the alternating sound dynamics characterizing grunge music; but took several months before it really caught on with radio and the music charts. Despite being briefly removed from their live shows, it remains one of the band’s most famous tunes.

#7: “There There”
Hail to the Thief (2003)


Taken off the band’s sixth studio effort, “There There” was inspired by the experimental sound of a German band called Can. Though guitar dominates the track, what makes Hail to the Thief’s first single really stand out are the different layers of drums and percussion featured throughout. The song made it to the UK Top 5 and is often included in the band’s live sets.

#6: “Let Down”
OK Computer (1997)


Though Radiohead’s third album is full of sonic gems, this 5-minute number is an excellent example of the band’s musical chemistry at its finest. Thanks to its complex guitar, some electric piano, melodic bass lines and plaintive but poignant vocals, “Let Down” is a truly highlight. Despite not being released as a single, it’s since become a fan favorite. It’s just that good.

#5: “Fake Plastic Trees”
The Bends (1995)



Inspired by the fake plastic trees of London’s Canary Wharf, Radiohead crafted this moody guitar track for their sophomore effort. While still categorized as alt-rock, “Fake Plastic Trees” started to bring the band away from their association with the grunge movement and into the realm of a more mainstream sound. But it’s the way it takes us on an emotional journey through song that lands it on our list.

#4: “Everything In Its Right Place”
Kid A (2000)


This Kid A track may not have any guitar, piano or drums, but Radiohead still managed to ensure that everything is in its right place. With eerie vocal effects, the use of a drum machine and electric piano, this over-4-minute cut knows just how to create an atmosphere that’s creepy enough to keep you captivated. The number hasn’t only been critically acclaimed but is also notable for the band’s trance-inspired onstage performances.

#3: “Karma Police”
OK Computer (1997)



It may not have a traditional chorus but thanks to Yorke’s unique but evocative vocals, sweeping piano and guitar and a haunting melody, “Karma Police” is a big part of why OK Computer is so great. Well-received by critics, the 4-minute-plus track was also a top 10 smash in the UK and helped Radiohead cement their place as one of rock’s finest bands.

#2: “Street Spirit (Fade Out)”
The Bends (1995)


When it comes to Radiohead, it doesn’t get much more melancholy than this single off The Bends. Thanks to Ed O’Brien’s steady guitar playing, “Street Spirit”’s slow and weird melody remains implanted in our brains. We also can’t help but feel Yorke’s desperation as a result of his expressive vocals. In short, it’s simple, beautiful and unforgettable. Meanwhile, its black-and-white music video perfectly encapsulated the song’s mood.

Honorable Mentions


“True Love Waits” I Might Be Wrong: Live Recordings EP (2001)
“My Iron Lung” My Iron Lung EP (1994)
“Reckoner” In Rainbows (2008)
“High and Dry” The Bends (1995)
“Pyramid Song” Amnesiac (2001)

#1: “Paranoid Android”
OK Computer (1997)


Taking a cue from fellow Brits like The Beatles and Queen, Radiohead crafted this OK Computer single with several different musical sections. With its dark humor and mix of alternative and progressive rock, “Paranoid Android” is often cited as one of the band’s best songs. The almost 6-and-a-half minute cut further solidified its status in pop culture and rock history with the vivid color and twisted visuals of its animated music video.

Do you agree with our list? What’s your favorite Radiohead song? With new top 10s published every day, be sure to subscribe to WatchMojo.com.
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