Wednesday Question: Best Album Intro Ever

Album intro, NOT the opening track!

Ultimate Guitar

For this week's traditional Wednesday Question, we'd like to kindly ask you lovely folks to think about songs that serve as album intros and answer this little thing right here:

What's the best album intro of all time?

TO CLARIFY: We are NOT looking for full-song album openers (there's already a UG Top 10 list of those); we are looking for tracks that primarily serve as album intros, but not that much as tunes of their own. Typically, these tracks don't last long, and it's not uncommon for them to be instrumental.

THE RULES - post only one suggestion per comment after checking that your favorite wasn't already nominated (Ctrl+F and all).

Multiple nominations of one song create heavy confusion, since on one hand it's unfair to the given track to take into consideration only the most upvoted nomination, but seeing that multiple nominations allow one user to give two or more votes to the same tune, it's also unfair to other nominees not to discard it.

Finally, vote up the ideas you support and vote down the ones you dislike. We'll sum up your votes by Friday and bring you another classic UG top list. Show us what you got now!

607 comments sorted by best / new / date

    I used to love the intro to Smash by the Offspring, mainly because of the difference between the soothing voice and the kickass drums of the song coming afterwards.
    Enigma - The Voice of Enigma Of course it's not rock but you can't deny that this is really cool intro.
    Sirius (Eye in the Sky) - Alan Parsons Project
    Definitely one of the best instrumental pieces ever, it just should be at the top!.. The Alan Parsons Project - Sirius
    judas priest - the hellion (screaming or vengeance intro)
    Listening to that made me remember why I started playing guitar in the first place. Fucking badass.
    was looking for this one. even tough I'm not a great fan of Judas, this album is amazing and the intro really gets you pumped for the album that follows it.
    Came here to nominate this bit of Priest. Was great for their "Priest...Live" intro: Out in the Cold
    Foam Born: The backtrack Colors 2007 Between the Buried and Me
    Great track. "Mirrors" and "Goodbye to Everything" could also be good honorable mentions.
    My pick for "best cheesy metal intro" is crystal ann by Annihilator
    Hardly cheesy in my opinion. It's a beautiful classical guitar piece leading into one of the best thrash metal tunes ever!
    Yes I agree it's lovely and a good song, "cheesy metal intro" is just a silly term for instrumental album intros in general
    Type-O Negative: "Bad Ground" off of October Rust. Bastards got me with that. Checked all my wiring for 15 mins or so trying to get rid of the bad ground.
    I think I'd have to go with Le Prologue - Letlive. from "Fake History". While I think it actually is a pretty good song on its own merits, it is substentially shorter than the rest of the tracks so I'm pretty sure it counts.
    Great nomination - agree! Also "Prologue" can be translated as "intro"
    Was going to post this myself. Impossible not to listen to the rest of the album after hearing it
    Amorphis - Thousand Lakes Just beautiful melody...
    Ole' Nessie
    Great album, almost forgot about this one! Made me think about the opening to Dismember's amazing like an ever flowing stream. It doesn't have a title but the beginning of override of the overture sets the tone for the whole album.
    It's great! But back to Amorphis, I also want to mention "Karelia":
    System Of A Down - Soldier Side (Intro)
    If I say please, will you disqualify this for being so jarring and lazily written? Please? - It's got more votes than Pink Floyd...
    m4ss3 m/
    Fuck off, grandpa. Your Pink Floyd sounds like shit when you take off the nostalgia glasses and stop smoking pot.
    Slipknot - 742617000027 Really crazy and scary to begin the album.
    The Prodigy - Intro [Music For The Jilted Generation] It introduces the album very well...
    Pink Floyd - Speak to Me (Dark Side of the Moon)
    I will agree it's awesome, but my nomination is from the previous Floyd album: Pink Floyd - Meddle. (The opening bass line(s) on "One of these Days".) P.S. - My fault, I didn't read the rules properly, "One of These Days" doesn't count since it's a full-on standalone track... "Speak to me" for the win.
    I think Pink Floyd have mastered the art of opening up an album. All are spectacular, but if I had to pick the best intro, it would be Shine on You Crazy Diamond off Wish You Were Here.
    Tha Funkinator
    It took the longest time for me to notice, but the intros and outros of a lot of Pink Floyd and Roger Waters solo albums sort of "loop" around conceptually and sonically. Dark Side of the Moon: Begins and ends with a heartbeat and voices buried in the mix. Wish You Were Here: Begins and ends with blowing wind crossfaded with the instrumental themes of "Shine On You Crazy Diamond". Animals: Begins and ends with a short acoustic "Pigs on the Wing" track, both of which are basically the same track. The Wall: Begins and ends with same gentle accordion theme, plus a snippet of Waters talking which fits together to connect the ending and beginning ("Isn't this where.../...we came in?") Roger Waters - Radio KAOS: Begins and ends with the plinking "Morse code" xylophone and, similar to The Wall, a wraparound bit with Jim Ladd saying (I think?) "sock it t/o me, baby". Roger Waters - Amused to Death: Begins and ends with a gentle instrumental backing, ambient crickets chirping, and the TV interview with Bill Hubbard. If you pressed me on it, I'd assume it's something about the cyclical nature of life, and how you're never really done going mad/feeling loss/walling yourself off/destroying the world/amusing yourself to death, you'll just begin again somewhere down the line.
    The Ocean - Epipelagic (for the album Pelagial) This is the intro of 55 minutes long concept album about going from the surface to the bottom of the ocean.
    Tiamat - Wildhoney Amazing intro for the amazing album.
    Ole' Nessie
    Their best work IMO this song blends beautifully into Whatever that hurts. Perfection
    Absolutely! Also, "Neo Aeon (Intro)" is a great intro too:
    To post something not rock-releated: UNKLE - Back And Forth
    Also surprised that no one mentioned it: Primus - Pork Chop's Little Ditty
    Marilyn Manson - Thaeter Really creepy and atmospheric...
    Also, "Inauguration Of The Mechanical Christ" is a so great intro:
    Surprised I haven't seen any Coheed yet. Just about all of their albums have intros. I like The Hollow the best (from The Afterman: Ascension). Nice atmosphere, plus a little dialogue to help set up the narrative.
    I like Keeping the Blade from Good Apollo the best. I'm pretty partial to orchestral music and this always sounds soothing but powerful to me.
    Keeping the blade going into welcome home is the one of the most epic things I've ever heard...
    I think the best coheed intro has to be the reaping from no world for tomorrow, it has lyrics that jump straight to the point and is dripping with atmosphere unlike the other intros which are mainly the piano theme.
    When I think of album intros, I immediately think of Coheed. But the one I would nominate is Keeping the Blade.
    Absolutely brilliant. I remember hearing it for the first time and being blown away. Great album.
    Mudvayne - Monolith I really like how it leads to the "Dig"!..
    Van Halen - 1984
    Came here to suggest this. I grew up with brothers much older than me and as a kid, they convinced me that this was a recording they made of aliens the night before while I was asleep. ...I believed them. Lolololol
    Immortal - Intro [Diabolical Fullmoon Mysticism] Great, melodic, atmospheric and quite unexpected from the black-metallers.
    Finntroll - Intro [Midnattens Widunder] Finntroll also have a lot of great intros, but I prefer this one - from their debut.
    Månegarm - I Nordstjärnans Sken The have a lot of cool intros, but this is the most beautiful in my opinion
    Converge - First Light It's amazingly transitioning into the next track "Last Light"...
    this is like the only converge album that doesn't just get right to it immediately, which is actually quite a strength. this was a totally different converge, probably my favorite of theirs
    Coal Chamber - Mist It was reeeealy great intro - and a song by itself
    Arfing Thumb
    Dream Theater - Regression The clicking, the calm words of the Hypnotherapist... it sets you in a perfect mood for the great journey this masterpiece of a concept album provides. Regression leads right into Overture 1928 (2 : 05). How cool is that? You have an Intro that illustrates storyline 1 (the present) and an Overture for storyline 2 (the past)!
    Empyrium - Kein Hirtenfeuer Glimmt Mehr So beautiful intro/song from so beautiful album.
    Intro - The XX on their debut Not sure if that counts as an intro or an opener