Spotify Challenge for Sci-Fi/Fantasy Fans

I need your help, friends, with putting together a Spotify playlist of thirty-three tracks from science fiction, fantasy, fairy tale, or otherwise otherworldly films, television shows, and video games.

Please leave suggestions in the comments.

I’ll post a link to the playlist in a follow-up post, along with the names of the three commenters who have the most submissions on the playlist.  Thanks all!

Kyle Cupp

Kyle Cupp is a freelance writer who blogs about culture, philosophy, politics, postmodernism, and religion. He is a contributor to the group Catholic blog Vox Nova. Kyle lives with his wife, son, and daughter in North Texas. Follow him on Facebook and Twitter.

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29 Responses

  1. Jaybird says:

    Brian Eno’s Prophecy Theme from Dune. (“And how can this be??? For he IS the Kwisatz Haderach!!!”)

  2. Tonia Pilliod says:

    Anything by Bear McCreary: Battlestar Galactica Season 4 is a favorite, especially “Resurrection Hub”, “Kara Remembers” and “Gaeta’s Lament”. My other favorites: (season 2) “A Promise to Return”, “Allegro”, and “One Year Later”. (Season 3) “The Dance” is my current ringtone. His Caprica soundtrack is equally good. Otherwise, Philip Glass “The Hours”, and Hans Zimmer “Inception: Dream is Collapsing” Danny Elfman is also good: I enjoyed his Alice in Wonderland theme. The Game of Thrones title is good…You HAVE to include Ghostbusters and either the Battle of Hoth or the Asteroid Field from Empire Strikes Back. And one last fun one: Hans Zimmer’s Sherlock Holmes soundtrack (I can’t decide between I or II) because he has great fun with the violin. If you need any more suggestions, I have an entire library of Soundtracks upstairs.

  3. Does it have to be an original composition, or can it be a previously-written song made iconic by its association with a production of this kind?

    And I’d nominate “Face to Face” by Souxie and the Banshees, from “Batman Returns” in any case.

  4. Patrick Cahalan says:

    “The Light Sailer” (track 14, the original Tron Soundtrack).

    The end credits song from The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across The Eighth Dimension

    The Space:1999 theme song.

  5. DensityDuck says:

    You could probably throw in just about anything by John Williams or Hans Zimmer. “Star Wars A New Hope Main Titles” is a popular choice for lists like this, and with good reason. I agree with the Tonia’s suggestion of “Asteroid Field” from ESB. And I know it’s not a “science fantasy” movie, but the theme from “Midway”, as performed by the Boston Pops, really sounds like something that would play while the Good Guy Space Fleet assembles.

    “The Right Stuff” from “The Science Fiction Album”, a four-disc set by the City of Prague Philharmonic. (There are a lot of good ones in that set, but if I had to pick just one I’d go with that.)

    “End Titles” from “TRON Legacy” gets you moving pretty well. “Main Titles” from “Blade Runner” is another good electronica piece.

    “Apollo 13: End Titles” with the female vocal chorus is pretty good.

    “Enterprise Clears Moorings” from “Star Trek 2”.

    “Love / End Titles” from “Firefly”.

  6. Ryan Noonan says:

    “Frog’s Theme” from Chrono Trigger is my single favorite piece of video game music ever written. “One-Winged Angel” is also great (especially one of the orchestral versions with the choral parts).

    To what extent either is available on Spotify, I do not know. My work firewall blocks Spotify, so I can’t check.

    Also, you said you’re going instrumental, so this doesn’t really fit, but OMG is “Build That Wall” from Bastion an outstanding piece of music. You might check out other things from that soundtrack that don’t have vocals, though.

    • Kyle Cupp says:

      Spotify has a couple concert performances of Chrono Trigger and Chrono Cross, plus two of the Distant World albums featuring orchestrated Nobuo Uematsu, but it’s only very slowly building up its video game selection.

      I’m cool with choir vocals for this play list.

  7. Ryan Noonan says:

    And since no one has grabbed the low hanging fruit, I will: “The Imperial March” from Empire. Also the opening credits from Batman: The Animated Series.

  8. Anne says:

    Science Fiction Double Feature Rocky Horror Picture Show
    Love Theme from Blade Runner soundtrack (actually anything off this whole album)
    March Buckeroo Banzai
    Main Title Firefly

    • DensityDuck says:

      Anne, I think that the “End Titles” from “Firefly” has a better expression of the theme.

      And…my word, you’re suggesting the saxophone solo from “Blade Runner”? Yikes. Not only is that, like, the platonic ideal of ’80s saxophone-noodling cheesiness, but it totally ruins the scene it’s in. Here’s this enormously emotional scene between a girl and a man, passions are driving them together in a way that neither of them can control, she’s terrified and he’s furious, the actors’ feelings about the scene are driving their characters, and you’re gonna put a fucking saxophone on that?

      • Anne says:

        Hey common its Vangelis what do you want? Can’t help it that sound track, a bubble bath, bottle of wine, and a good SF book and I’m a very happy camper. But points taken.

  9. CK MacLeod says:

    Some other low-hangers: Also Sprach Zarathustra, Blue Danube Waltz, Lux Aeterna from 2001; synthesized Ode to Joy from Clockwork Orange; Toccata and Fugue in D-Minor, Rollerball; Forbidden Planet Theremin soundtrack; Dr Who theme (there was an excellent mash-up of Dr Who credit sequences I ran into, kind of a history of cheap video-psychedelica of the last 50 years); more obscure but came to mind as I sit here trapped in retrofutureland and stray off-topic is the opening from The Monitors, who, as you may already be aware, were a stylistic forerunners of the Ordinary Gentleman: I’m guessing NOT on Spotify, but would be a great addition to a playlist. Would also guess that “Rejoice in the Sun” from Silent Running also didn’t make the Spoticut, but many will consider that a point for, not against.

  10. Tod Kelly says:

    Since things seem a little instrumental so far, I’d like to nominate:

    “Still Alive”/ Jonathan Coulton from Portal.

    “Everyone’s A Hero”/ Nathan Fillon from Dr. Horrible

    Some Fun Now”/ Little Shop of Horrors

    Other instrumental tracks I might go with are the Beetlejuice Main Theme, Grande FInale from Edward Scissorhands, He’s A Pirate from Pirates of the Caribbean, Real Rain from Pleasantville

  11. greginak says:

    You need some of “electronic tonalities” from Forbidden Planet and some theremin music.

  12. Johnwhodoesmath says:

    Movie: The opera/techno piece sung by the blue alien in the Fifth Element, which is apparently called “Lucia Di Lammermoor.”
    TV: The theme from Farscape.
    Videogame: “Dancing Mad”, the final boss(es) music from Final Fantasy 6.

  13. Morat20 says:

    From Mass Effect: Mass Effect Theme , “The Normandy”, Induction to the Spectres is quite good.

    Fellowship of the Rings “The Ring Goes South” includes the full Fellowship theme, I believe. (Can’t listen here at work to verify the tracks).

    Jurrassic Park’s “Journey to the Island” includes the Isla Nubar theme (a very stirring bit of Williams).