What is the longest recorded song

Radiohead: Front man records 18 days long song

The British band Radiohead are known to like to think outside the box of pop. Groundbreaking albums like “OK Computer”, “Kid A” and “In Rainbows” were each way ahead of their time, and not just musically. Radiohead proved, among other things, that experimental electronic sound can also work in the mainstream market. But also that, thanks to the internet, there are also successful sales channels for musicians outside of the major labels.

Now Radiohead boss Thom Yorke (46) goes one step further and goes on a world record hunt: with the longest song ever recorded in pop history!

Yorke wrote and recorded the song "Subterranea" for an art exhibition in Sydney, Australia. This will be played as accompanying music throughout the event.

Duration of the exhibition - and thus also of the song: 18 days!

The total of 432 hours or 25,290 minutes long work consists of experimental sounds and recordings that were made exclusively for the exhibition of the artist Stanley Donwood. He has been friends with Thom Yorke and his band Radiohead for decades and has designed the album covers, among other things.

"Subterranea" is about 400 times longer than the longest song ever recorded according to the "Guinness Book of Records". "The Scriptures" by the British band Love Hope Strength Foundation has a total length of one hour, 43 minutes and 40 seconds.

Unfortunately, after the show in Sydney, which runs until June 6th, you will probably not get to hear the song again. Because as it is said, the song should never be officially released.


1. The longest piece of music

Probably the longest piece of music in history has been performed in the Sankt Burchardi Church in Halberstadt (Saxony-Anhalt) since 2001. The US composer John Cage († 79) wrote the organ work "ORGAN² / ASLSP" as early as 1987, where "ASLSP" stands for "as slow as possible", which is what happens during the performance is taken literally.

The planned playing time of the piece is 639 years. It started on September 5, 2001 - with a break that lasted about a year and a half. The first sound of the automated organ was heard on February 5, 2003. The next change of tone is planned for September 5, 2020, and the piece should end in 2640.

2. The largest choir

On January 30, 2011, an incredible 121,440 people gathered in the Indian city of Perungalathur to form the largest choir of all time. The event was organized by 2429 helpers. The mega choir ended up singing in unison for more than five minutes. World record!

3. The oldest band

Joy, Teddie and Babs Beverley have been a vocal trio under the name The Beverley Sisters since the 1950s. This makes them the longest uninterrupted vocal group in history. In 2002 this earned them an entry in the “Guinness Book of Records”.

4. The longest tour

Since June 7, 1988, Bob Dylan (74) has been playing the longest uninterrupted concert tour of all time, unofficially known as the "Never Ending Tour", with around 100 shows a year. To date, Dylan has played more than 2,600 concerts during this tour.

5. The shortest song

The British-American band Napalm Death has secured an entry in the “Guinness Book” with the song “You Suffer” from their debut album “Scum”. The piece, which is only 1.316 seconds long, is considered the shortest song in the world.