Top 10 Songs to Study With This Finals Season – Fall 2022

Illustration by Diane Kim

Lola Heymann

Staff Writer

With finals right around the corner, many of us will not be able to avoid studying. Personally, I find studying tedious and try to do as little of it as possible. But if there is no way around it, I like to at least make it somewhat more enjoyable by having music to listen to. The only problem: finding the right music. It cannot be too boring because studying is already boring enough, but it also cannot be too distracting or have catchy lyrics that will make me want to sing along. If you are also faced with this tricky situation, The Bottom Line can help you out. Here is a list of 10 songs to listen to while studying!

  1. Are You Satisfied — Marina and the Diamonds

The verses “high achiever don’t you see, baby nothing comes for free” channel perfectionist energy in this song! It has an upbeat tune and, in a way, the lyrics are motivating to work toward what you’re trying to achieve.

  1. Venice Bitch — Lana del Rey

This is a lovely song to put on while studying, as it has such a nice, chill vibe. It doesn’t take you out of whatever you’re concentrating on because while it’s a very good song, it’s also unobtrusive. Lana del Rey’s soulful voice will make every study session more bearable. Plus, it goes on for nine minutes. If you play it twice and study the whole time, you can get a lot done in just two plays!

  1. Four Out of Five — Arctic Monkeys

While I’m not particularly fond of Arctic Monkeys’ newer music, their album Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino is perfect for background study music. This song is my personal favorite for studying. Alex Turner’s lugubrious vocals and the song’s dreamy rock tune are catchy, but not to the point where the song disturbs your concentration.

  1. Cigarettes Out the Window — TV Girl

Just such a good background bop! TV Girl is another one of my go-to background music bands. Their vibey indie songs create a relaxing and inspiring atmosphere.

  1. Mirrorball — Taylor Swift

This song has a comforting energy to it. It makes you feel good — not in a party kind of way, but rather in a blasting-it-alone-in-your-room kind of way. The lyrics “[a]ll I do is try, try, try,” are fitting, matching any student in the midst of studying for finals.

  1. Teardrop — Massive Attack

A soft, ethereal tune, “Teardrop” is perfect to maintain a good mood while studying. Their trip-hop melodies are a great backdrop for reading or writing.

  1. How Soon is Now — The Smiths

This dreamy ’90s rock feels like the sort of song Rory from Gilmore Girls would listen to while studying. I certainly related to the lyrics “I’ve already waited too long and all my hope is gone” while studying for my organic chemistry exam. Hopefully, you do not have this experience, but you should still put on this song because it’s a banger!

  1. Six AM — Inner Wave

Yet again, another soft indie rock song because it is my favorite genre to listen to for studying. This song is rather short, but the band’s other music is similar in style and you can just let any album of theirs play for a great study session. 

  1. Notoriously Fast — VTSS

This is the counterpart to most other songs on this playlist because not everyone is into listening to chill songs while studying. VTSS tends to lean towards a fast techno-party sound, creating the illusion that you’re having a good time with whatever you’re studying. It’s similar to how I write most of my essays on Wattpad to trick myself into thinking I’m writing something fun.

  1. Silver Soul — Beach House 

Beach House is the perfect band to listen to in the background while studying! Their songs are slow and relaxing with beautiful lyrics, and they don’t impose themselves on your consciousness while you concentrate on something else. This song makes me feel like I’m the main character in an indie film, which is a plus for when you want to romanticize something even as banal as studying.


Mario Kart, Coconut Mall — Arcade Player

A life hack from my best friend whom I share my Spotify: all Mario Kart soundtracks are great to listen to while studying, as they give that extra little bit of ambition needed. The only side effect is now Coconut Mall reminds her of studying anatomy. Win some, lose some, etc.