Rats are a metaphorical figure used in many works of art. In some songs the artists express inner feelings with a rat. In others, they prefer to use rats in dark contexts of the corruption of concepts such as state and society. We often see them in music videos. In some lyrics it is used in the context of sweetness, while in some lyrics it is in darker themes. Rats have been successfully used metaphorically in many movies and works of literature. We are curious about the ones in music. We have listed rats-themed songs that we recommend you to add to your playlists. Various kinds of songs about rats from different artists:
Ghost – Rats
Swedish bands have a unique style in the world of modern music. One of these bands, the metal band Ghost, often uses dark themes in their songs. They express their frustration perfectly both in the lyrics of their songs and in their music videos. One of the Ghost songs that metal fans should definitely include in their playlists is Rats. This song was released in 2018. It is one of the most dystopian songs about rats with its lyrics about a dystopian city overrun by rats.
UB40 – Rat In Mi Kitchen
It is well known that British music has been a global success. The famous band UB40 also contributed to this wave. They released entertaining songs that can be considered a good mix of reggae tones with the pop genre. They had a more proactive music career, especially in the 80s. Although their song Rat in Mi Kitchen was also released in these years, it is still listened to with great interest. It is one of the most distinctive songs about rats where you can feel the reggae atmosphere. In the lyrics, it is understood that Duncan Campbell, the lead singer of the band, was inspired by a rat that entered his kitchen.
Queen – Great King Rat
Queen, one of the most famous bands of all time, revolutionized the musical perception of the period. Especially Freddie Mercury, the singer and founder of the band, became an icon. Mercury, who won the admiration and recognition of all with his unique vocal technique and libertarian approach, performed the song Great King Rat in 1973. The British band’s Great King Rat, which expresses their protests about the corrupt king in the lyrics, is one of the most courageous among the songs with rats in the title. The song is a fusion of rock and blues genres in the Queen style.
Bobby Shmurda – Rats
American rapper Bobby Shmurda is one of the hip-hop artists who has successfully continued his rap music career today. Having released numerous songs in trap music, the artist’s song Rats, released in 2020, is an example of the rap genre among songs about rats. In the lyrics of the popular song, he used rats as a metaphorical expression by comparing dishonest people to rats. When we listen carefully to the verses, we immediately realize that it is written in an elaborate way. You should also make space for Bobby Shmurda’s gritty songs in your playlists.
Deep Purple – Flight Of The Rat
In 1968, Deep Purple was born in London under the influence of the freedom movement of the time. David Coverdale’s vocals and songs attracted a lot of attention. In the 70s and 80s, they were recognized by the whole world. The song Flight Of The Rat from their album just 2 years after their formation is one of the oldest songs about rats. Although the song has jazz elements, it is certainly a hard rock song. When you look at the lyrics, it is obvious that the feeling of revenge is intensely felt. The song that starts with the sentence “Spread the word around, the rat is leaving town” should be on your list no matter what kind of music you like.
The Doors – Dead Cats, Dead Rats
The Doors, led by Jim Morrison, is one of the most famous rock bands that released impressive songs in the 70s. The lyrics and music constructions in their songs are quite original. The Doors’ song Dead Cats, Dead Rats, which succeeded in influencing a large audience, has a dark theme and criticizes society. Morrison, who achieved to become an iconic artist, died when he was only 27 years old. For this reason, he is remembered among the “27’s club”, which is known in the music world, where artists who died at the age of 27 are included in the list. Among songs about rats, this track by this popular group should definitely be remembered.
Genesis – All in a Mouse’s Night
Jethro Tull – One Brown Mouse
The British rock band released their song One Brown Mouse in 1977. This song, which contains influences from folk and rock genres, overlaps the feelings of a rat who lives an ordinary life with the artist’s inner feelings. Although Jethro Tull has published successful songs in the rock genre, there are also traces of the jazz genre in their songs. Founded in Luton in 1967, the band’s song that can be listed among songs about rats is One Brown Mouse. Some members entered and left the band in different years. The respected British band is still listened to on digital music platforms today.
The Misfits – Rat Fink
Alice Cooper – Road Rats
American rock singer Alice Cooper released his hit song Road Rats in 1980. The song’s lyrics describe the life and hardships of rock and roll musicians who have to spend their lives on the roads. American rock singer Alice Cooper released his hit song Road Rats in 1980. The song’s lyrics describe the life and struggles of rock and roll musicians who have to spend their lives on the road. Alice Cooper is an impressive character with his interesting make-up and long hair. Cooper, who is called the “father of metal”, is among the songs about rats with his song Road Rats. There are countless songs that are memorable thanks to his raspy voice and it is known that he is still continuing his music career even though he is in his 70s.
The Walkmen – The Rat
Another original example for songs about rats is The Rat as an indie rock anthem by The Walkmen, released in 2004 as part of their album Bows + Arrows. This song is a standout in the band’s discography, known for its frenetic, angsty sound and biting lyrics. The title, The Rat, becomes a symbol for the central theme of frustration and disillusionment within a relationship. Lead singer Hamilton Leithauser’s distinctive, raspy vocals drive the emotional intensity of the song, and the lyrics express the feeling of being let down and betrayed.
The Rat captures the turmoil and unease that can come with the realization that a once-promising relationship has soured. The energetic guitar work and propulsive drumming further emphasize the song’s sense of urgency, making it a powerful and relatable expression of emotional turmoil.
The Specials – Rat Race
Let’s explore one different song more. Rat Race is a notable ska and new wave song by the British band The Specials, released in 1980 as a standalone single and later included on their compilation album The Singles Collection. The song humorously addresses the monotonous and mundane aspects of daily life, reflecting the struggles and frustrations that come with the routine of work and societal expectations. The term rat race is used to describe the competitive and often unfulfilling nature of modern life.
The Specials’ distinctive blend of ska, punk, and social commentary shines in Rat Race, which remains a satirical anthem capturing the essence of life’s challenges and the desire for something more meaningful beyond the daily grind. The song’s catchy melody, combined with its thought-provoking lyrics, makes it a timeless and relatable track for many who have felt the pressures of the daily rat race.