What’s on Adrian’s playlist?

Last month we checked out Ciaran’s playlist – now it’s Adrian’s turn!

Adrian Hon – CEO and Co-creator

So I’m going to share the secret behind my music playlists for races! It’s a very reliable and predictable formula: I always start with an up-tempo song that gets me excited but isn’t too fast, because let’s face it – you can’t actually run that quickly when you’re stuck in the pack. Some good starting songs:

  • Come On! Feel The Illinoise! by Sufjan Stevens:
  • At Least it Was Here (“Community” Main Title) by The 88
  • A Thief’s End (Uncharted 4) by Henry Jackman

Once the pack starts to thin out, I want a few songs that’ll settle me into a nice, solid, bouncy rhythm – again, not too fast, but not too slow. If I’m doing a half marathon, I might have 5-10 songs along these lines:

  • Lose Yourself to Dance by Daft Punk
  • Extreme Ways by Moby
  • Lost Coastlines by Okkervil River
  • Feel the Lightning by Dan Deacon

Now we’re around halfway through the race and it’s time for me to put on a burst of speed (as Sam would say)! Usually, other runners are starting to flag at this point, so it’s really satisfying to do a few sprints and overtake people. Fast, short, intense pop songs and movie soundtracks that I can best describe as “determined” are what’s necessary. Stuff that makes you feel like a hero:

  • Spider-Man Loves You by Daniel Pemberton
  • I Have to Try (The Flash) by Blake Neely
  • Brother’s Keeper (Uncharted 4) by Henry Jackman
  • My Shot (Hamilton) by Lin-Manuel Miranda
  • Portions for Foxes by Rilo Kiley

In a 5K or 10K race, I’ll usually be close to the end and I can round out my playlist with some longer, fun songs. In a half-marathon, things get trickier since I find it pretty easy to lose steam here. Here’s some great songs that keep my spirits up as I get closer to the finishing line:

  • Tron Legacy (End Titles) by Daft Punk
  • End Titles (Moulin Rouge) by Craig Armstrong
  • Moog Necklace (Ocean’s 8) by Daniel Pemberton
  • It’ll Get You There by Rilo Kiley
  • Despair by the Yeah Yeah Yeahs

Yep, there’s a lot of movie-closing soundtracks there! These work really well because they’re longer and reprise all the main themes in the movie in a satisfying and, yes, distracting way.

I rotate between five or six different race playlists for 5Ks, 10Ks and half-marathons, and of course I always love adding new songs. The only problem is that I tend to listen to my favorite songs to destruction, so I always need a new supply!


What’s on my playlist? – Ciaran

Music can play a huge role in the Zombies, Run! experience. We’ve all had times when a song has perfectly matched up with a bit of the story – and had shuffle throw up that rogue Monty Python track in the middle of a serious moment! Music can heighten emotions, especially when you’re exercising, and with so many emotionally charged missions in Zombies, Run!, it makes the choice of music pretty important!

Here, we talk to some of the people behind Zombies, Run! to find out what’s on their playlist!

Ciaran Roberts – QA and Support

My music taste is pretty eclectic (and I am always several years behind the curve when it comes to picking up new stuff). I have one big playlist with about a hundred songs on it that I just keep adding to as I find things I like. I’m a bit of a magpie! This includes everything from Fall Out Boy to Shakespeare’s Sister, a couple of anime intros and that one track I got for free from iTunes and really liked. I’ve currently been introduced to a band called Battle Tapes because of their song Belgrade, so I’m working my way through their back catalogue.

One of my favourite tracks to run to is Laura Palmer by Bastille. It really makes me feel like I’m having an epic moment when it comes on during a mission, especially if a zombie chase is involved. On the other hand, there are a couple of my favourite songs I’ve had to kick off the running rotation because the beat leads to me tripping over my own feet!

I’ve had a couple of moments of real serendipity when it comes to music, although they weren’t necessarily good for my pace. One of them was during the mission ‘Actual Cannibal Rescue Mission’ when Actual Cannibal Shia LeBeouf started playing. It did throw me a bit off my stride though. Hard as it is to run while crying, running while giggling is equally difficult!

The other was a real tear jerking experience, when Everybody Hurts by REM came up during that mission in Season 4. Sometimes my playlist just doesn’t want me to be able to keep running!