Search icon


09th Dec 2015

5 unforgettable endings to brilliant rock songs

When the riff takes over

Colm Boohig

Some very happy endings here.

The intro to every rock song usually makes the difference between leaving it on or skipping it, and when it’s done right it makes for amazing music, as we have already covered.

A less obvious element in a cracking track is the outro, but the ending of a rock tune can often be so good that it makes you want to press repeat immediately.

These are the types of tunes we’re talking about.

Beetlebum – Blur

This writer listened to this track on a bus recently and the ending of the song actually proved to be the inspiration behind compiling this list.

Beetlebum is one of those songs from the era that mastered the bittersweet sound of melancholy and hope; no mean feat.

Taken from their eponymous fifth album, there have been very strong rumours that the song is about Damon Alburn’s heroin experimentation at the time with Elastica’s Justine Frischmann – his ex-gilfriend.

With the final lyrics of ‘he’s on it’ repeated before the the guitars take over, Beetlebum also inadvertently signalled the end of Britpop and the return of a more cynical musical landscape.

Clip via Blur

Good Times Bad Times – Led Zeppelin

Two for the price of one with this short, but unbelievable, Zeppelin tune, as the intro is on par with a blood-pumping climax.

The track is often used in trailers for major motion pictures, most notably for American Hustle, if memory serves, and it’s easy to see why.

Just on the turn of two minutes is the reason that Good Times Bad Times makes the list.

Once you get there, well, there are no more words needed.

Clip via fishlegend

Step On – Happy Mondays

The unofficial anthem to the madness of the Madchester scene in north west England during the late 80s and early 90s.

The first few seconds of the track are instantly recognisable to anybody passing by, and the fade out at the end is just as good.

There’s something about Shaun Ryder swigging that beer and Bez being, well, Bez that makes you want to restart the tune and fire up that BBQ.

It’s all about the guitar and backing vocals at the end, here. Cracking.

Clip via TwiztNMelonz

A Song for the Dead – Queens of the Stone Age

If you ever need to get fired up for a vital match, important results, or a big exam, then you could do a lot worse than giving this one a belt.

A Song for the Dead is just one of the many fantastic tunes from the band’s masterpiece, Songs for the Deaf.

Foo Fighter lead man and all round legend Dave Grohl appeared on drums throughout this record, and this song is probably his finest moment.

It’s at 4.35, just before the screeching brakes and rewind sound kicks in, that absolute rock carnage ensues.

Clip via Welcome To Heaven

I am the Resurrection – The Stone Roses

The Godfather of all of the great rock outros, it has to be said.

We can’t wait to hear this in Marley Park next summer, because the ending to this track is the definition of class – and it was all improvised.

The band allegedly laid down this track live in the studio, which included completely making up the second half of the song on the spot.

Think about that; from 3.40 onwards that outro was done by eye contact and skillful instinct alone. Amazing stuff.

Clip via tatsuna777

We’re just tipping the iceberg here, so let us know what we’ve missed out on by getting in touch with us on our Facebook or Twitter.

LISTEN: You Must Be Jokin’ with Aideen McQueen – Faith healers, Coolock craic and Gigging as Gaeilge


JOE Lists,Music