Our top 10 Hollywood Undead songs list digs deep into the music of a US-based ensemble renowned for blending nu-metal, hard rock, rap-metal and rap-rock sounds. The band has been active since 2005, with its current lineup mostly made up of its original members. Daniel Murillo, also known as Danny, is the only member to have joined the band later after its inception. All members contribute to the band’s vocals and instrumentation, with Dylan Alvarez, also known as Funny Man, being the exception.
Dylan Alvarez has through the years contributed his vocals skills alone to the band’s musical pursuits. Hollywood Undead has cited Rage Against the Machine, Eminem, Wu-Tang Clan, Nine Inch Nails, Linkin Park, and Tom Petty as some of its influences. Hollywood Undead has interacted with other artists throughout its career, including Skrillex, Stone Sour, Avenged Sevenfold, Attila, and Asking Alexandria.
Hollywood Undead’s Career Beginnings and Breakthrough
After its formation in 2005, the band took several years to build momentum for its musical career. Tough beginnings for the band were marked with conflicts between some members. The result was a shakeup in the band’s lineup, with the departure of vocalist and keyboardist Jeffrey Phillips. The band had initially signed a recording deal with MySpace Records. However, Hollywood Undead left the label after it attempted to censor its songs.
Eventually, the band landed a deal with A&M/Octone Records, where it released its debut album. Swan Songs, issued in September 2008, was the band’s first LP. The album catapulted Hollywood Undead to mainstream success, peaking at number twenty-two on the Billboard 200. Swan Songs sold a total of twenty-one thousand copies in the first week of its release. The album spent eighty-four weeks on the Billboard 200, certified Gold in the next year after its release.
Swan Songs was later certified Platinum in 2013, five years after its release. While the album received mixed reactions from music critics, it marked the band’s breakthrough. The album is home to some of the best Hollywood Undead songs, including “Undead,” “Everywhere I Go,” “No. 5,” and “Young.”
Hollywood Undead’s Album Releases over the Years
Hollywood Undead debut LP achieved both mainstream and commercial success. It took the band three more years to make another album release. American Tragedy, issued in 2011, was the band’s sophomore LP. Critics lauded the album for its heavier and darker lyrical content. American Tragedy surpassed Swan Songs both in sales and chart performance.
Within the first week, American Tragedy had sold sixty-seven thousand copies. The LP also rose to the fourth spot on the Billboard 200. American Tragedy marked the band’s first LP to top the Billboard Top Hard Rock Albums chart. Some of the great Hollywood Undead songs on the LP include “Been to Hell,” “My Town,” “Coming Back Down,” “Bullet,” and “Here Me Now.”
Later on, Notes from the Underground, was issued in 2013 as the band’s third LP. The album went on to smash American Tragedy’s chart record, peaking at number two on the Billboard 200. Notes from the Underground is the band’s highest-charting LP of all time. However, the LP failed to outshine American Tragedy in terms of commercial success. The LP sold fifty-three thousand copies, fourteen thousand fewer copies than American Tragedy. “We Are, “Another Way Out,” and “Dead Bite” are the most reputable releases from the LP.
In 2015, Hollywood Undead released its fourth LP, Day of the Dead. Unfortunately, the LP had a hard time trying to match the previous success Hollywood Undead had with Notes from the Underground. Day of the Dead only managed to rise to the eighteenth spot on the Billboard 200. The album title track to the LP is one of the best Hollywood Undead songs featured on this list.
Not even the fifth studio album Five, issued in 2017, took Hollywood Undead to its desired fame and success. Five peaked at number twenty-two on the Billboard 200. The album’s title was inspired by the fact that Hollywood Undead was a five-piece band at its release, and this was the band’s fifth LP release. The best Hollywood Undead songs on the LP include “California Dreaming,” “Renegade,” and “Whatever It Takes.”
The band later released two LPs in 2020, New Empire, Vol.1, and New Empire, Vol. 2. New Empire, Vol.1 peaked at number one hundred and twenty-five on the Billboard 200. Unfortunately, New Empire, Vol.2 didn’t manage to enter the Billboard 200. However, it saw the band feature reputable artists, including Tech N9ne, Spencer Charnas of Ice Nine Kills, Jacoby Shaddix of Papa Roach, and Hyro the Hero.
Hollywood Undead’s Accolades and Legacy
Hollywood Undead doesn’t have much to show in terms of accolade won. However, the band is among acts that have pushed the rap-rock music genre to the next level. Other legendary rap-rock artists include Linkin Park, Red Hot Chili Peppers, and Twenty One Pilots.
The band has also proved to be a little artistic and creative. All of the band’s members use pseudonyms and wear masks during its performances. While some thought of masks as a way to hide the members’ identity, J-Dog revealed that the masks helped them stand unique in the rap-rock scene.
Some have critiqued the band for its misogynistic and homophobic lyrics in some songs. However, Hollywood Undead remains one of the few rap-rock acts that push the rap-rock genre, which majorly flourished in the mid-90s. Here are the top 10 Hollywood Undead songs of all time.
#10- Heart of a Champion ft. Papa Roach and Ice Nine Kills
Ushering us to the top 10 Hollywood Undead songs list is the raging hit “Heart of a Champion.” “Heart of a Champion” is one of the best Hollywood Undead songs from the band’s most recent LP, New Empire, Vol. 2. Hollywood Undead features Spencer Charnas of Ice Nine Kills and Jacoby Shaddix of Papa Roach on this ballad.
“Heart of a Champion” alludes to trying even harder when things seem to be getting worse. The song’s lyrics push its listeners to find the strength to go past any daring obstacles in their pursuit of success. American rapper Nelly teamed up with Lincoln University Vocal Ensemble to release a song with a similar title to our number ten, featuring similar themes (but different lyrics).
#9 – Dead Bite
Notes from the Underground is home to multiple hits that showcase the band’s incontrovertible talent in the rap-rock scene. “Dead Bite” is one of the tremendous releases from this LP. The song features lyrics that the band’s fans and critics have found to be alluring.
However, the song has been lauded by many, thanks to its humorous music accompanying video. The video also features RJ Mitte of the crime drama TV series Breaking Bad. “Dead Bite” managed to rise to the thirty-fifth position on the Billboard Hot Rock & Alternative Songs chart.
#8 – Whatever It Takes
The eighth spot on our best Hollywood Undead songs list goes to the anthemic track “Whatever It Takes.” “Whatever It Takes” is one of the most alluring hits from Hollywood Undead’s fifth LP Five, issued in 2017. Vocalist and bassist Johnny 3 Tears revealed that “Whatever It Takes” is a personal release for the band.
He cited the song was inspired by the difficulties the band members have undergone not only from the professional perspective but also individually. The song’s lyrics also features what it takes to catapult oneself from tough situations to successful ones. Hollywood Undead cites self-determination to be the key tool towards turning life around. “Whatever It Takes” managed the forty-fourth spot on the Billboard Hot Rock Songs chart.
#7 – Day of the Dead
“Day of the Dead” is the album title track to Hollywood Undead’s fourth LP, issued in October 2014. The song is an aggressive call to defend what it feels like to be part of Hollywood Undead. Johnny 3 Tears revealed that the song is a release for the band members and its diehard fans.
The song is one of the heaviest releases by the band, thanks to the thunderous guitar riffs. Hollywood Undead members have often referred to “Day of the Dead” as the band’s anthem. While the song might be a massive release, critics gave negative remarks on the LP, citing the song’s lyrics to be depthless and uninspired. Nevertheless, “Day of the Dead” peaked at number seventeen on the Billboard Rock Songs chart.
#6 – Young
Number six on our top 10 Hollywood Undead songs list is the grooving hit “Young.” “Young” is one of Hollywood Undead’s musical gems from the debut LP Swan Songs. The song’s lyrics allude to the band’s perception of the world’s current generation.
Hollywood Undead feels that the current generation has the power in its hands to change the world in whatever manner. However, the song cites some mental health issues that are plaguing the current generation. These mental health issues have made the generation lose reasons to live and make a significant change in the world. “Young” peaked at number twenty-eight on the Billboard Mainstream Rock chart.
#5 – Bullet
American Tragedy is home to our number five track on the top 10 Hollywood Undead songs list, “Bullet.” “Bullet” is a striking hit alluding to mental health deficiency. The themes covered in this ballad include self-harm, suicide, anxiety, and depression.
Hollywood Undead penned the song’s lyrics from the perspective of a person sunk in the thought of taking his own life. “Bullet” has been lauded by critics thanks to its hard-hitting lyrics and its upbeat tempo. The song is one of the most-streamed Hollywood Undead songs on YouTube.
#4- Everywhere I Go
“Everywhere I Go” is one of the best Hollywood Undead songs featured on the band’s LP Swan Songs. The song was penned by Deuce and Charlie Scene, who also collaborated with Matthew Busek on this release vocals. Matthew Busek provides background vocals to the song. Deuce sings its chorus as Charlie Scene delivers some of his best rap vocals.
“Everywhere I Go” has been acclaimed by critics and fans of the band owing to its dance-oriented vibe. The song peaked at number thirty-eight on the Billboard Alternative Songs chart. “Everywhere I Go” is among the hits that helped Swan Songs rise to the twenty-second spot on the Billboard 200.
#3 – We Are
On the third spot on our top 10 Hollywood Undead songs is the pulsating hit “We Are.” The song is featured on Hollywood Undead’s LP Notes from the Underground. Vocalist and bassist Johnny 3 Tears revealed that the song serves as a perfect introduction to the LP’s overall theme.
“We Are” has been cited to be a rap-rock ballad to the singer’s misled youth. The song’s theme is quite similar to the band’s hit “Youth,” featured on the LP Swan Songs. “We Are” peaked at position thirty-three on the Billboard Rock Songs chart.
#2 – Been to Hell
“Been to Hell” is one of the band’s most popular and alluring tracks. The song is featured on Hollywood Undead’s LP American Tragedy. “Been to Hell” has its lyrics allude to vulnerable young people who flood the cities of Los Angeles in the hope of rising to fame in the entertainment industry.
Sadly, most of these people end up in turmoil after failing to share the spoils of the flourishing entertainment industry. Having lived in the city of Los Angeles, the band members of Hollywood Undead already can tell how hard it is to land success in this competitive city. “Been to Hell” peaked at number two on the Billboard Bubbling Under Hot 100.
#1 – Hear Me Now
Number one on our top 10 Hollywood Undead songs is the electrifying hit “Hear Me Now.” Hear Me Now” is one of the best Hollywood Undead songs from the band’s sophomore LP American Tragedy. The song alludes to what several members of Hollywood Undead were battling with at a given time.
“Hear Me Now” has its lyrics penned from the standpoint of a person facing problems without any hope of things getting better. The song blends rap-rock with electronic rock and alternative rock elements resulting in one of the band’s most pleasant-sounding odes. “Hear Me Now” peaked at number one on the Billboard Bubbling Under Hot 100 chart.
Photo: Sven Mandel, CC BY-SA 4.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0>, via Wikimedia Commons
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