That's right, ladies and gentleman, it's another post to honor my month long Halloween celebration. In my very humble opinion, music is one of the best ways to get in the mood for anything, so I've comprised a list of some of my favorite Halloween songs to get you feeling spooky. Maybe you know some of the songs, maybe you don't (doubtful), but regardless, here's a good jump off point for you to make the most kickass Halloween playlist ever. Whether it's for your inevitable costume party, or for you to dance around to alone in your underwear, you'll definitely be in the Halloween spirit afterwards.
"This is Halloween" by Marilyn Manson
This is, of course, a The Nightmare Before Christmas cover. While the original movie version is great, there's something about Marilyn Manson and Halloween that are perfectly harmonious. Maybe it's the creepy makeup, maybe it's the black clothes, or maybe it's the rumor that he threw live puppies into a crowd at his show once. Whatever the reason, Halloween and Manson have become synonymous, and this cover proves that.
"The Ballad of Sweeney Todd" by Stephen Sondheim
For all of my musical theater people out there, this one is for you. If you're unfamiliar with the Stephen Sondheim musical Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, it's pretty much about this crazy English barber hellbent on revenge against a judge who sent him away so he could subsequently steal his family. So this dude comes back, befriends the local pie shop owner, and they set about slitting people's throats and then using them as meat for pies. Classic love story. If this sounds interesting to you, it's worth checking out the Tim Burton movie adaptation.
"Science Fiction/Double Feature" by Me First and the Gimme Gimmes
I grew up with a Halloween CD that featured "Time Warp" on it, so I always associated The Rocky Horror Picture Show with Halloween. Honestly, remember that playlist I told you to make? Just add the whole soundtrack to it, because it's pretty hard to narrow it down to one song from that movie. In high school, when I was this amazingly cool (don't debate me on this) quasi goth/punk/hippie chick, I came across The Rocky Horror Punk Rock Show, which, as you may have guessed is a punk cover album of the Rocky Horror soundtrack. I fell in love with this cover instantly, and because of it, Me First and the Gimme Gimmes is still a band I listen to today. They're a punk supergroup cover band with Fat Mike from NOFX. Check them out. But I digress...
"Dead Man's Party" by Oingo Boingo
Before The Simpson's theme, before Sam Raimi's Spider-Man series, before countless collaborations with Tim Burton, Danny Elfman was the frontman of new wave band, Oingo Boingo. I don't know about you, but nothing gets me ready to dance like some upbeat 80s club music paired with lyrics like "goin' to a party where no one's still alive". In fact, that's how I prefer my Halloween parties. Full of 80s music and zombies.
"Dead Souls" by Joy Division
While "Dead Souls" may not be the most well-known Joy Division song, it's easily my favorite. And though I love the Nine Inch Nails version, something about the original is just a bit creepier. Ian Curtis' droning voice sends chills down my spine, especially since Curtis was depressed, and would eventually commit suicide. This song emanates feelings about death, hollowness, and isolation. Plus, any song that successfully fits the word "conquistador" into it gets an A in my book.
"Living Dead Girl" by Rob Zombie
Before Rob Zombie started making movies that scared the shit out of us, he was just a simple guy who was making songs that also, well, scared the shit out of us. I mean, what else can you expect from a guy who names himself after a rotting corpse who feeds on people? Anyway, I actually really love Rob Zombie, and while any song of his will do for Halloween, "Living Dead Girl" is my jam. The music video was also inspired The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari, a classic German silent horror film.
"Halloween' by Misfits
Misfits paved the way for the genre of horror punk to exist, for which I am forever grateful. I'm sorry, but how is it even possible to create a Halloween playlist without some horror punk thrown in there? Answer: It's not, and you're welcome for pointing it out. So head bang the shit out of this song, because "this day, anything goes".
"Werewolves of London" by Warren Zevon
This song is here to remind us that, while werewolves want to kill us, they're also just trying to enjoy some Chinese food, and maybe even indulge in Pina Colada at Trader Vics. They're just like you and me. They just like to mutilate some old ladies from time to time. Should we really judge them for that? Especially if their hair is perfect?
"Ooogie Boogie's Song" by Ken Page
This is just a fun song to get down and boogie to. See what I did there? But seriously, of all the Nightmare Before Christmas songs, this one is the most danceable. Here's this guy, who is essentially a beige sack full of bugs, trying to kill Sandy Claws. But add in some black lights and sexy skeleton backup singers, and he gets soulful and funky in a way a only a pillowcase full of bugs can. Just don't make him angry. And now with your permission, he's going to do his stuff.
"Thriller" by Michael Jackson