Social gatherings are arranged and enjoyed throughout the year but some parties require something slightly different to the norm. Arguably the most fitting example of such an occasion is that of Halloween, when the scary costumes, pumpkins, lanterns, trick-or-treaters, bonfires and fireworks are out in force. At a Halloween party it is obligatory to see a range of ghoulish outfits and music with a spooky edge to it is also needed. The most obvious example of one of these songs is Michael Jackson’s ‘Thriller’ with the lyrical content, the zombie video and Vincent Price’s haunting laugh.
Here are some other suggestions for the Halloween playlist, with a mix of genres to choose from.
Warren Zevon – Werewolves of London
Recorded by American singer Warren Zevon in 1978, ‘Werewolves of London’ is known to this day as a quirky classic. Lyrics such as ‘I saw a werewolf with a Chinese menu in his hand, walking through the streets of Soho, he was looking for a place called Lee Ho Fook’s,’ are certainly memorable and the howling will fit the occasion perfectly.
Whodini – Freaks Come Out At Night
The much quoted and sampled Brooklyn hip-hop group Whodini made their contribution to Halloween playlists with their 1985 track ‘Freaks Come Out At Night’. Their often-used synthesised sound is all over the hook on this one with a haunted edge.
Ozzy Osbourne – Bark At The Moon
Although his antics may have calmed somewhat in recent years there was no stopping the juggernaut that was wild man and former Black Sabbath frontman Ozzy Osbourne in the 70s and 80s. ‘Bark At The Moon’ is one of Osbourne’s signature solo hits and it requires no justification for being played at Halloween.
Rockwell – Somebody’s Watching Me
Singer Rockwell got Michael and Jermaine Jackson in the studio to help him out with the vocals on this song. ‘Somebody’s Watching Me’ is all about a haunting bout of paranoia and the track was reworked by Dutch dance act Beatfreakz in 2006.
Backstreet Boys – Everybody (Backstreet’s Back)
One of the 90s quintessential boy bands, the Backstreet Boys may not be the obvious choice for a Halloween soundtrack but the video for this song features all five members in a nightmare scenario in a haunted house.
Meat Loaf – Bat Out of Hell
Penned by the legendary Jim Steinman, ‘Bat Out of Hell’ tells the story of a motorcyclist riding at a perilously high speed on the highway. Still one of Meat Loaf’s most recognisable songs in a career that has lasted over 40 years, the rock and roll anthem has a hellish backdrop and a raging ending.
Tegan and Sara – Walking With A Ghost
A spooky theme but with much more elegant vocals than the title of the song perhaps suggests, ‘Walking With A Ghost’ is an interesting alternative for the Halloween playlist. The Canadian duo are identical twins and this song was released in 2005 before Michigan band The White Stripes chose to cover it on their EP of the same name.