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11 Frightfully Indispensible Halloween Songs

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            1. “Bela Lugosi’s Dead”– Bauhaus (1979)
              This paean to the man who gave Dracula his widow’s peak and his distinctive Hungarian accent rattles and echoes like it was recorded from across an underground crypt. Slow-starting, melancholy, and mysterious. A good intro number.
            2. “I’m Your Boogieman”– White Zombie (1996)
              More driving is White Zombie’s radical reinterpretation of KC and the Sunshine Band’s disco classic, which was originally featured on the soundtrack of The Crow: City of Angels. Somewhat overworked, but fun and danceable.

        8.”Season Of The Witch” – Donovan (1966)
        This psychedelic, post-folk classic is easily recontextualized by the Halloween season. Like “Bela Lugosi’s Dead,” it winds a weird and isolated path toward an eruptive climax. Earthy and semi-sinister, and good for building an aura of supernatural excitement.

            1. “Dead and Buried”– Alien Sex Fiend (1985)
              A dose of punky 80s goth rock that’s fast-moving, diabolical fun. Good dancing or driving music. If you dig “Bela Lugosi’s Dead,” “Dead and Buried” is a sure bet.
            2. “Red Right Hand”– Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds (1994)
              This tune blends strange and ambiguous imagery with a tone dripping with menace, and yet is danceable in a pinch. Play it when the lightsare low.
            3. “Main Title” fromEd Wood– Howard Shore (1994)
              The only all-instrumental track to make it onto the list, Howard Shore’s central arrangement from the Tim Burton film Ed Woodis evocative of 1950s schlock horror, and is just as fun and flamboyant. Not recommended for those with an aversion to the theremin.
            4. “People Are Strange”– Echo and the Bunnymen (1987)
              A “Boogieman”-style reinterpretation of Jim Morrisson’s 1967 classic, this song uses synth to create an aura of unreality. Recorded for the soundtrack of an equally recommendable piece of Halloweeny media, The Lost Boys. Good for promoting an atmosphere in which the uncanny and the bizarre seem natural.
            5. “Scary Monsters (And Super Creeps)”– David Bowie (1980)
              Takes the dramatic beats of Glass Spider-era Bowie’s other material and infuses it with ominous power that takes it to the edge of the chaotic. Pure rock, pure Bowie, and perfectly suited to almost any Halloween playlist.
            6. “This Is Halloween”– Marilyn Manson (2016)
              A beat-for-beat recreation of the opening song from Tim Burton’s Nightmare Before Christmas, but done up with Marilyn Manson’s copyrighted brand of deliberate peculiarity and creepiness. I’d highly recommend this for any Halloween playlist, particularly for people who don’t usually like Manson.
            7. “Time Warp”– Rocky Horror Picture Show (1975)
              About as obvious as “The Monster Mash,” but ten times as indispensible. This song and, in fact, the entire Rocky Horrorsoundtrack should be heavily considered Halloween playing for anyone who’s not afraid of a little camp.

         

         

         

 

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