Because Halloween is every day, I’m always on the look out for spooky, melancholy, or just plain crazy tunes to add to my ULTIMATE HALLOWEEN MIX on Spotify.
This year, I’ve selected some of my recent discoveries, along with some great classics for our all-new A VERY FORCES OF GEEK HALLOWEEN mix.
You can listen to the mix here, or click here to launch it in Spotify.
I have Elvira, Mistress of the Dark to thank for introducing me to The Cramps. This track was highlighted on one of her Halloween mixes from back in the day, which possessed me to explore their catalogue of horror-themed tunes.
THE MEPHISTOPHELES OF LOS ANGELES
From his 2015 album The Pale Emperor, which plays as a sort of dark tribute to David Bowie, by way of hell. I’m moving to Los Angeles in January, so this one sits in my heavy rotation playlist until then.
LUCRETIA MY REFLECTION
Sisters of Mercy
Soon, you’ll start to get the goth vibe in this mix, starting with a classic from the Leeds band with a lead singer I’m still convinced moonlighted as the lead singer of Men Without Hats.
DEVIL COMES ROUND
Men Without Hats
A safe-for-dancing newer song from the band with a lead singer I’m still convinced moonlighted as the lead singer of Sisters Of Mercy.
One of my favorite songs from the band, and best experienced with headphones or other controlled substances.
THE GHOST IN YOU
Trailers have ruined slow covers of popular songs, but this great cover of the Psychedelic Furs classic hasn’t been used in a trailer to my knowledge. Yet.
Another beautiful, slower, creepier cover to turn into a bad-ass Rob Bottin werewolf to.
I don’t know if this is necessarily was meant to be a spooky song, but it creeps me out big time.
The background organs, the reverb vocals, and the causal guitar all fit together perfectly in this shoegaze symphony.
I didn’t want to go too crazy with the sound effects, but I had to break things up here with the ever so slow and impossibly creaky creaking door.
Don Hinson & The Rigamorticians
“Monster Mash” gave way to way too many doppelgangers, but the sarcasm in this one works.
THE GREAT PUMPKIN WALTZ
New Age pianist George Winston replaced the eerie jazz flute from the original Vince Guaraldi arrangement, but it still works. One of my favorite Halloween compositions.
SATAN TAKES A HOLIDAY
This is a great Jazz guitar version of a kooky tune I wish I had a 78rpm of.
MY LITTLE DEMON
From their concert album “The Dance” comes this crazy Lindsey Buckingham track. Of course it’s really about drugs, in the same way George Michael’s “Monkey” is, but the playfulness with demon sounds and vocal stylings ramps up the horror factor.
GOOD MAN IN A BAD TIME
Yes, from the dance sequence in the original Fright Night. Still one of my all time favorite 80s soundtracks (which has been reissued on vinyl at last by Night Fever Music.
I mean, who doesn’t love a great sax backing riff to go with their synth chords?
HAUNTED (WHEN THE MINUTES DRAG)
Love and Rockets
Not necessarily about actual, literal haunting, but still a very creepy song with haunting lyrics.
SATAN IS REAL
The Louvin Brothers
This 1959 country track from The Louvin Brothers is soaked in evangelism, but that might make it more suitable for Halloween. And you must check out this Capitol Records cover art.
GHOST GOES TO TOWN
The Five Jones Boys
Fans of the Don Knotts comedy The Ghost and Mr Chicken will recognize this as the source song for the film’s soundtrack. The tongue clicking percussions, phoney horns, and bass bumblings are better than actual instruments.
This is Big Band during last call in a crummy, skid row bar after the brawls have settled and you don’t have to go home, but you can’t stay there.
The key horror montage where the ghosts take Manhattan in Ghostbusters wouldn’t work without the purple haze of ILM, nor this track from someone named “Mick Smiley.” Read more about why he only released this one song before performing a disappearing act here.
THE MONKEY TIME
In Halloween of 1982, Paramount Pictures gathered together Dan Aykroyd, John Candy, Gilda Radner, and Cheech and Chong for a celebration of crazy B-movie moments. The monkey montage was done to this obscure song by Major Lance. I figured it might get stuck in your head long after listening to the mix, so we end with that.