The Halloween season is all about having a good time, and what’s better for having a good time this time of year than spooky music? It’s a damn crime that Halloween music isn’t played every month of the year like Christmas music seems to be. However, until society starts accepting Halloween as something enjoyable that isn’t out to offend them, we won’t hear any horror punk jams in supermarkets in the near future.
This year, we decided we had to share some Halloween music. But what constitutes Halloween music, you ask? Does the subject of the song need to revolve around the occasion? Does it need to be horror-tinged? For us here at Diabolique, it can be both of these things — as well as so much more. Halloween isn’t only about pumpkins, pagans, and kinky rituals. It’s also a mood, a vibe, a feeling. As long as the music in question reflects that sentiment, it counts.
This list of albums has been selected by our coven of writers because we feel every single one of them sounds extra good this time of year. There’s something for all taste buds here as well. You’ll see. The order of this list doesn’t reflect our preferences. The truth is we couldn’t really decide our favorites as they’re all so good. So, treat the ordering with a pinch of salt and know that every album here is an unholy delight.
Who even cares about order at the end of the day, anyway? Sometimes it’s nice to sit back and watch the world burn, and so forth. The Halloween season is supposed to be about embracing chaos, as the portal between the land of the living and the realm of the dead opens up and unleashes all kinds of madness. This list reflects that.
With this in mind, there’s enough music here to last a month, so if you’re looking for some spooky jams we have you covered. We also encourage you to share your own personal favorites to play this time of year. Enjoy.
31. Fred Schneider – The Shake Society
The song “Monster” starts with a 45 second instrumental lead in — a spacey funk guitar solo over an early techno drum machine thump and a synthesizer staccato that recalls the Addams Family theme just enough to give the song a haunted house vibe. B-52s frontman Fred Schneider’s low vocals interrupt the groove, matching the synthesizer staccato, “THERE’S A MONSTER IN MY PANTS AND IT DOES A NASTY DANCE.” The innuendos and camp continues with B-52s frontwoman Kate Pierson channeling every terrified woman from every 1950’s late-night TV shocker, “OH NO, A GREAT BIG MONSTER!” Now for the patented Diabolique deep analysis: they’re talking about Fred’s dick. – Klon Waldrip
30. 45 Grave – Sleep In Safety
Deathrock wasn’t even a fully coined subgenre in 1983, but one of its biggest and eternally beautiful monster parents emerged with their debut album. 45 Grave’s Sleep in Safety is a fantastic mutant that is punk, monster-novelty-rock, and charnel-ethereality. It’s a spiked-punchbowl with sugary-sweet juice (“Surf Bat”) spiked with pure grain alcohol, we’re talking some Gem Clear business (“45 Grave,” “Evil”), something far stronger and possibly almond flavored (“Partytime,” the original version that lyrically deals with a real-life case where a five-year-old girl was beaten, raped, and murdered, not the more famous one associated with Dan O’Bannon’s 1985 film, Return of the Living Dead), and of course, a ragged monster mask (the entire album.) Sleep in Safety is a fantastic debut from a band that steadfastly remains footed in the gruesome, fun, and DIY at its finest. – Heather Drain
29. Various Artists – Black Roses OST
What’s Halloween without horror movies and hair metal? Well, the good news is that Black Roses, one of the best movies ever made, combines both of these things. If you look up “damn masterpiece” in the heavy metal movie dictionary, this will appear, emerge from the page and start shredding. However, if you just want to listen to some tunes then the soundtrack will hit the spot better than a a fresh class of milk on a sunny afternoon in June. “Me Against the World” will inspire you to briefly grab the bull by the horns and conquer the universe. “Paradise (We’re On Our Way” will touch your feels and take you to a dreamier place. There’s a lot of emotions to be experienced with this one, but more than anything the album rocks harder than a public stoning. – Kieran Fisher
28. Diamanda Galas – Litanies of Satan
When Diamanda Galas made her debut in 1982 with The Litanies of Satan, the world had no idea what it was in for. Since then, the Avant-Garde performer’s voice has graced several albums and major studio films such as The Serpent and The Rainbow and Conan The Barbarian. She’s continued to be a major force in activism for HIV awareness and Armenian Genocide recognition, both of which were explored in albums such as You Must Be Certain of the Devil and Defixiones: Will and Testament. In just two tracks, the other being a composition entitled “Wild Women with Steak Knives”, Galas established herself as a unique voice in a wilderness of excess and decadence that the 1980’s would ultimately become.
The title track, comprised of the poem of the same name by Charles Baudelaire is a literal journey into Hell, complete with an atmosphere that seems to exist on the very edge of madness. With little musical accompaniment, Diamanda utilizes her five-octave range voice to recite the poet’s prose in such a way that inspires terror, isolation, and utter hopelessness. If the sounds that emanate from the album are enough to incite such strong emotions, then its translation to visual expression is enough to strike a raw nerve. A live performance was distributed on VHS from Target Video, which not only features Galas performing the song in its entirety but struggling and straining to deliver each line with unrelenting ferocity. In an age where the music industry had become a hollow shell of its former self, Diamanda Galas’ body of work is a reminder that true artists still exist. – Jerome Reuter
27. Michael Jackson – Thriller
The King of Pop’s career is filled with Halloween highlights. His first solo song “Ben” was recorded as the theme song to the 1972 horror film Ben. Halloween decorations frequently use the Rockwell song “Somebody’s Watching Me” featuring MJ singing the irresistible chorus. But no song outside of the “Monster Mash” captures the October 31st spirit like his “Thriller.” Everyone in the whole wide world knows this song, there’s even an Indian rip off song, “Golimaar,” from the movie Donga (1985). The album produced three music videos “Thriller”, “Billie Jean”, and “Beat It” that are so iconic that you can find kids Halloween costumes for each one on Amazon. As a matter of fact, the 14-minute long John Landis directed “Thriller” music video features music by Elmer Bernstein, special effects by Rick Baker and a spoken word rap from Vincent Price himself! GIVE IN TO THRILLER! – Klon Waldrip
26. Alice Cooper – Welcome to My Nightmare
Though my first conscious memory of Alice Cooper is from Wayne’s World, and while Love it to Death is what really cemented my adult love for Alice as a musician, nothing quite holds the same place in my heart as his spooky 1975 concept album, Welcome to My Nightmare. I should note that for me the album and the accompanying concert film are pretty much one and the same to me. This is an ideal introduction to Alice the performer — this was actually his first time out on his own, without the previous “Alice Cooper” band — and it’s prime Halloween material for several reasons. First, Alice himself, who needs no introduction nor explanation, though it should be noted that he was at peak madness here. Second, there’s a collaboration with Vincent Price. Third, it’s a concept album about a child’s nightmares, fully immersed in horror movie fandom. The stage show cost more than half a million dollars to produce and if the thought of a giant spider running across the fog-soaked stage towards Alice, who later wields a sword, and also kisses a severed head just in the title video alone, can’t convince you, then you have come to the wrong place. Good day, sir. – Samm Deighan
25. Murderdolls – Beyond the Valley of the Murderdolls
Beyond the Valley of the Murderdolls is a debut album by the American horror punk band made up of like-minded horror fans: Wednesday 13, Joey Jordison of Slipknot fame, Ben Graves (who sadly passed away earlier this year), Eric Griffin and Acey Slade. These five guys screamed their heads off singing about zombies, murder, death and the dead. Their (full of swearing) lyrics were heavily influenced by horror films with songs like “Love at First Fright” inspired by 1973’s The Exorcist (“When I saw you piss on the rug, my heart fluttered, and I knew it was love, true love”), or “Welcome To The Strange”, a bonus track featured on the film soundtrack of Freddy Vs. Jason (2003).
Alas, Murderdolls split a few years later and went in different directions (Jordison and W13 reunited and recorded a new album in 2010, then split again). Wednesday 13, though, has since continued his solo horror show and carried on singing about ghouls and ghosts.
More than a decade on and Beyond the Valley of the Murderdolls is still a great October/Halloween soundtrack with heavy, angry but fun tribute songs to everyone’s favorite horror films. You simply can’t go wrong with gems like “B-Movie Scream Queen” featuring Morticia Addams and Vampira, or “Dead in Hollywood” with its great opening “Hey Frankenstein, what’s on your mind? Hey Dracula, I heard you suck!” – Magdalena Salata
24. Rob Zombie – Hellbilly Deluxe
Rob Zombie could never be called a Halloween dilettante. He’s dedicated his adult life to rubber masks, black lights, spook shows and I hear that his beard dreads even smell like pumpkin spice. Zombie’s first solo album, Hellbilly Deluxe, was the top choice for the turn of the millennium goth strippers. It sounds like a follow up to White Zombie’s final album, Astro Creep: 2000 but it ups the spooky spirit with songs like “Living Dead Girl” (which has a sample from the Lady Frankenstein trailer!) and “Dragula” (taking its name from Grandpa Munster’s hot rod!). Zombie went so diamond hard for Halloween kicks in 1998 that he started his own garage rock label, Zombie-a-Go-Go, releasing the haunted house-friendly compilation Halloween Hootenanny as well as excellent albums by surf rock bands The Bomboras and The Ghastly Ones. – Klon Waldrip
23. Killing Joke – Night Time
Night Time marked a turning point record Killing Joke, a breakthrough moment that made them more accessible and comfortable in their own creepy skin. While the album retained the aggression and darkness they were synonymous with until that point, this outing marked the beginnings of a group honing their gloomy sound. The album is rich in atmospheric anthems, with the awesomely-titled “Love Like Blood” being the highlight of the bunch. I played that song in a bar once and an elderly patron told me it was a good choice. Such is the power of Night Time. – Kieran Fisher
22. Depeche Mode – Black Celebration
While Black Celebration doesn’t elicit the traditional spooky imagery that other albums do on this list, this 1986 Depeche Mode album is nonetheless drenched in atmosphere. Dark, somber, sexual, and otherworldly, it’s unmistakably adult and easy to see why the band is so influential in Goth culture. Listeners interested in defying the conventions characteristic of other go-to Halloween-themed music will have no problem getting lost in the Black Celebration. – Cody Noble
21. Christian Death – Only Theater of Pain
If you’re looking for an album that vividly depicts the sordid and macabre, then look no forward than Christian Death’s 1982 full-length, Only Theatre of Pain. The group was formed on the outskirts of Los Angeles in 1979 by vocalist Rozz Williams, and their debut is considered by many to be the birth of deathrock (although some bestow that credit to 45 Grave’s 1981 single, “Black Cross.”) Aside from it going on to establish an entire subgenre and influence a generation of musical acts, it’s a perfect example of a lineup contributing all the right factors to a work of art that defies convention.
While the PMRC would go on to spend time needlessly obsessing over the lyrics from bands like WASP and Mercyful Fate, Christian Deaths’ songs were full of morbid imagery that pushed boundaries others weren’t approaching. It would be years before ritualistic sodomy and necrophilia would become almost normalized by today’s trends in music labeled extreme. Accompanying Williams’ melancholic vocals on titles like “Romeo’s Distress”, “Cavity: First Communion” and “Burnt Offerings” is the fluid work of bassist James McGearty, driving the songs along with guitarist Rick Agnew’s post-punk influenced chord progressions.
By the time the group returned in 1984 with Catastrophe Ballet, the lineup had changed completely, with Williams being the only remaining member. With the sound and style going in a completely new direction, it’s safe to say they had become a new entity entirely. This is also reflected in the several albums that were released after Williams’ eventual departure. Only Theatre of Pain will always remain remains the definitive Christian Death album. – Jerome Reuter
20. The Black Belles – The Black Belles
Produced by The White Stripes’ Jack White, The Black Belles’ self-titled debut album (and their only full-length at the time of writing) is 1960’s flavored garage rock with a spooky side. This is beach party music for night owls, with 11 tracks boasting surf guitars, spooky organs, and groovy basslines. These songs wouldn’t sound out of place in an AIP movie from yesteryear, but at the same time it’s all very hip and modern. The Jack White factor makes for moments that sound similar to his own projects, but good music is good music regardless and this album is hella fun. If you’re partying this Halloween, these incredible ladies should be on your playlist. – Kieran Fisher
19. Kiss – Destroyer
Alive! prepared Kiss for superstardom, but it was Destroyer that rocketed the band to legendary status and made it a household name around the world. Any question as to why the album might be included on a Halloween list can be answered merely by dropping the needle on “God of Thunder,” a Gene Simmons tour de force about being “the Lord of the Wasteland” and “slowly [robbing] you of your virgin soul,” with creepy kid vocal effects that make you think of devilish imps playing in Hell. (Compare this with the original demo version sung by Paul Stanley, which kicks butt in its own way but is a decidedly different take on this song.) The sado-masochism tune “Sweet Pain,” car-crash horror of “Detroit Rock City,” and anthemic “King of the Night Time World” are also great reasons to crank up this classic on Halloween — or any other day, for that matter! – Joseph Perry
18. Blue Oyster Cult – Fire of Unknown Origin
So why does Fire of Unknown Origin deserve to be in our Halloween list above all other Blue Oyster cult albums? I mean it’s not as if their other albums aren’t packed with delicious, insane songs about vampires, aliens, Kaiju monsters and even Death himself, is it? The answer is the magnificent slice of Gothic metal that is the penultimate track, “Joan Crawford.” Hot on the heels of the 1978 publication of Christina Crawford’s Mommie Dearest, the actor’s adoptive daughter’s expose of her abusive upbringing by the screen icon who died in 1977, the Cult immerse us in a nightmare vision of New York streets populated by crazed junkies and deranged catholic schoolgirls while cops cower behind the skirts of little girls This is cut with the chorus of “No no no no no no no no no no no no Joan Crawford has risen from the grave” as a real-life monster returns to torment her charge, culminating in the bridge with the dead actress’s words, “Christina, Mother’s home, Christina, Come to Mother” crashing into a symphonic crescendo comparable with the full frenzied insanity of Grieg’s “Hall of the Mountain King.” Oh yeah, the album also contains the best set of Michael Moorcock’s lyrics (outside of Hawkwind naturally) in “Veteran of the Psychic Wars.” – Simon Ball
17. Gravediggaz – 6 Feet Deep
“I’ve been examined ever since I was semen, they took a sonogram and saw the image of a demon.” – Shabazz the Disciple from the song “Diary of a Madman.”
The hip-hop world was waiting for Gravediggaz, the horrorcore hip-hop group featuring producer/rappers Prince Paul and the Wu-Tang Clan’s RZA among others. Groups like Cypress Hill and the Geto Boys had flirted with serious horror iconography, but for the most part horror rap songs were novelties like “Are You Ready For Freddy?” by The Fat Boys or “Nightmares” by Dana Dane. 1994’s 6 Feet Deep is built around Johnny Mathis, Booker T & the MGs, and Dead Can Dance samples, but sounds like a graveyard covered in graffiti tags and littered with Zig Zag wrappers and beer bottles. – Klon Waldrip
16. Hot Blood – Dracula and C°
A byproduct of an opportunistic German disco producer or the best novelty record ever released? Hot Blood’s lone full-length, Dracula and C°, is successful because it understands the secret to good horror is bad taste. It reduces its characters to caricatures — they’re either sleazy monsters spouting come-ons or mad sirens wailing nonsense — and in doing so it uses the lurid excesses of disco as a platform for parody in a manner not dissimilar to Paul Morrissey’s refashioning of classic Universal horror films as delirious anti-erotica. Soul Dracula, indeed! – Rob Skvarla
15. Samhain – November-Coming-Fire
Glenn Danzig’s second project post-Misfits, Samhain, made darker, more serious, not to mention more sonically diverse music than the ‘Fits. November-Coming-Fire was the 1986 follow-up to Initium and more perfectly captures the spirit of All Hallow’s Eve than any other Danzig project. From the iconic cover art, to to the pagan imagery-inducing title, to the re-recording of the Misfits’ “Halloween II”, Samhain crafted a perfectly evil soundtrack to your darkest Halloween celebrations. – Tim Murr
14. Perturbator – The Uncanny Valley
Listening to Perturbator is like hopping into a Chevelle and going for a coke-fuelled drive through the fiery pits of Hell. The French synthwave producer makes electronic music primed for the dancefloor, only with a black metal sheen that give his sound a savage, demonic edge. If I had to describe The Uncanny Valley as anything, it would be disco for the damned. Put on a pair of shades, hop into your vehicle, hit play, and put the pedal to the motherfucking metal. The album deserves such an experience. Any Perturbator album could have made this list, but The Uncanny Valley is the one we voted for and Diabolique is a democracy. – Kieran Fisher
13. The Cramps – Off the Bone
Needing the perfect soundtrack for a high-octane monster party down in the voodoo woods? Then friends, Romans, and countrymen, welcome to The Cramps’ 1983 compilation, Off the Bone. This album is wholesale sinister intentions and hot thrills, with tracks like “Human Fly,” “Garbageman,” “New Kind of Kick,” and more being the rotgut-whiskey-shot of pure grade sleazy-rockabilly F-U-N. The greatest cover ever of Peggy Lee’s sultry chestnut, “Fever,” which was used to perfection in the 1987 film, Near Dark, is on this sweetie-tracklist. If you don’t like this comp or this band in general, then you clearly hate things like monster masks, dancing girls, chemical spills and thrills, and primordial-swampy rock & roll. Also, what’s wrong with you? Lighten up, Beeker, and let’s start frugging! – Heather Drain
12. T.S.O.L – Beneath the Shadows
One of the most punk things a band can do is change their sound to something other than punk and not care what real punks think. With Beneath the Shadows, this is exactly what T.S.O.L. did. After bursting onto the scene as a hardcore punk act, they opted for a more new wave/post-punk sound for this outing. Naturally, some fans felt alienated, but they attracted a new base as a result. What does being punk have to do with Halloween, though? Nothing, really. But I felt the band’s boldness was worth mentioning. Beneath the Shadows is not a spooky record in the traditional sense, but it’s a dark one, with plenty of atmosphere, dark romanticism and horror-inspired lyrics permeating the tracks. Plus vocalist Jack Grisham sounds like a beautiful ghoul, which only adds to the autumnal mood. – Kieran Fisher
11. John Carpenter – Halloween OST
John Carpenter redefined music in the horror film with a bongo beat. A simple, practice rhythm in 5/4 time that he then translated to the piano, then naturally to the synthesizer and created the most effortlessly perfect horror theme in history. The music and the film work in perfect harmony. Every time you watch Halloween, you’re going to see it in concert. It has no real beginning, no real end, no real reason, nothing to convey but a simple and continuous dread that could come on at any moment. It is, in that respect, the perfect theme for Michael Myers himself. There have been countless attempts to outdo (or more often redo) it and every one of them only proves how unique a score it truly is. – Nat Brehmer
10. Siouxsie and the Banshees – Juju
Picking between albums by this band is like choosing which child to buy a Christmas present for. That said, this is arguably the Banshees’ darkest album and the most in tune with the season. With tracks about voodoo dolls (“Voodoo Dolly”) and Halloween itself (“Halloween), this collection of gothic-tinged post-punk is drenched in gloom and doom in all the right ways. But the melodies bring some light to the darkness, and Siouxsie’s vocals arehaunted and blissful. Opener “Spellbound” is one of the best songs ever recorded by any artist, and it perfectly sets the tone for the spooky and psychedelic opus that follows. – Kieran Fisher
9. Dead Can Dance – Within the Realm of a Dying Sun
The title of Dead Can Dance’s 1987 album alone gives Within the Realm of the Dying Sun the right to take its place in the top 31 Halloween albums, as the days draw in and the Winter King prepares to usurp the throne of the Summer King at Samhuinn. This glorious slice of darkwave merges influences ranging from horror film soundtracks, romantic classical composers, Middle Eastern dance to the Walker Brothers with its blend of hypnotic percussion, searing multi-tracked choral vocals and chillingly atmospheric strings, brass, and bells. It’s the perfect disc to spin as your guests arrive for that Halloween party to quaff some red wine before you slam on the 45 Grave on the wheels of steel. – Simon Ball
8. Ghost – Infestissumam
Ghost may have released a new album this year, but Infestissumam still stands not only as one of their best but also as an excellent mood setter for Halloween. Every song is catchy and entries like “Body and Blood”, “Secular Haze” and “Monstrance Clock” aid in establishing a spooky tone coupled with religious imagery. Arguably the crown jewel of the album, “Ghuleh/Zombie Queen” starts out as a dreamlike requiem but abruptly shifts into a dark and groovy anthem that evokes 1960’s surfer music. Combined with sinister cover art, Infestissumam altogether conjures images of undead ghouls jamming out in a Gothic cathedral against the setting Autumn sun. This is one unholy baptism worth taking. – Cody Noble
7. Claudio Simonetti – Simonetti Horror Project
It is genuinely hard to find the words to describe Simonetti’s Horror Project, other than to say it is the most ’80s thing I could possibly imagine. Sure, it was released in 1991, but if you took a shot every time a keytar appeared on stage, you would actually die before the “Profondo Rosso” rap mix ended. Like Alice Cooper’s Welcome to My Nightmare, Simonetti’s Horror Project has a live performance/video component and if you’re unfamiliar, you should watch all the videos on the album before simply listening to it (you can find them on Youtube, though there is also a standalone vinyl). Basically, this is a slightly remixed greatest hits of Goblin songs most Italian horror fans know and love, themes from films like Tenebre, Deep Red, Suspiria, Phenomena, and more. But there are about a thousand keytars, that horror rapping genius, Dr. Felix (RIP), and accompanying horror-themed performance pieces that must be seen to be believed. Did I mention there are keytars? I’m guessing there was also a lot of cocaine involved in the conception of the video. – Samm Deighan
6. Motley Crue – Shout At the Devil
If you’ve never read the band’s group memoir, The Dirt, it will be the greatest gift you give yourself at the end of 2018. Since the holiday season is nearly upon us, I feel like I should say that it makes an excellent Christmas gift. But while you’re sitting around carving pumpkins and thinking about who in your life needs to read the dick in the burrito story, or learn about the time that Ozzy snorted ants off the pavement, blast Shout at the Devil as loudly as possible. The band doesn’t actually worship Satan, to my chagrin, and their sleazy blend of hair metal with dashes of punk and glam might not be for everyone. But “God Bless the Children of the Beast” is definitely the ideal interlude for that grim moment at a Halloween party when you’re doing shots of tequila and trying to figure out if you want to go home with the person in the Sexy Freddy Krueger costume, or the Sexy Leatherface outfit. – Samm Deighan
5. Nick Cave – Murder Ballads
Murder Ballads is the ninth studio album from Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds. Each track represents a salacious true crime account of human misery and despair. Cheery it ain’t. The album kicks off with “Songs of Joy,” a traditional tale of romance gone sour with kidnapping a murder. Track two is where things go apocalyptic. The violent saga of “Stagger Lee” has been detailed by hundreds, if not thousands, of artists: from Champion Jack Dupree to the Grateful Dead to Tom Jones. However, none of those voices quite capture the terror and atrocity that the Bad Seeds accomplish here. At the halfway point, Cave partners with pop sensation Kylie Minogue for “Where the Wild Roses Grow.” Their duet is another sad descent of courtship turned bloody and might trick merrier listeners to join the album’s murderous parade. The album concludes with Bob Dylan’s “Death is not the End” packing Kylie Minogue, P.J. Harvey, Anita Lane, and Shane MacGowan alongside The Bad Seeds. If you gotta go, go out strong. The world is on fire, and all your plans have fallen flat, but don’t worry, salvation lies in the afterlife. Murder Ballads is as joyous as it is grim. The world is an awful place, but even in that horrid business, beauty is waiting to be discovered. – Brad Gullickson
4. Type O’Negative – Bloody Kisses
It’s October 30th. You and an old friend are driving through a myriad of dirty back roads in an unnamed rural area. The clock on the dashboard glows the numbers, “11:55 pm.” The veil between the living and the dead will soon thin, as you both head towards an old abandoned house. You’re young but also possess a heart-longing for your friend coupled with some slinky desires of a more physical form. Getting out of the car, the crisp night air possesses something tangible. Beauty mixed with fear. Desire mixed with sadness. Goofiness mixed with some old soul insight. The soundtrack? Type O Negative’s 1993 album, Bloody Kisses. What a great album by a strong and one-of-a-kind band. – Heather Drain
3. Misfits – Walk Among Us
Released in 1982, Walk Among Us is a landmark album of horror punk majesty. An unimpeachable classic collection of thirteen tracks that blaze by in a mere 25 minutes. From the opening mutant anthem “20 Eyes,” Walk Among Us has zero filler, every song is a classic, addictive, and gets stuck in your head. “I send my murdergram/ to all these monster kids/ It comes right back to me and it’s/ signed in their parents’ blood!” – Tim Murr
2. King Diamond – Abigail
King Diamond has the most iconic voice in all of heavy metal and Abigail is his first of many concept albums. A gothic tale of a cursed family that constantly throws each other down flights of stairs, the record begins with the last rites of the title character. Abigail was born dead on the 7th Day of July 1777 (sung as “Seventeen seventeee-seh-he-vuhn”) but has been reborn through accursed treachery and she must be buried impaled by seven silver spikes so that she won’t rise and cause more trouble. Delivered at top volume by the dual lead guitar attack of Andy LaRocque and Michael Denner, the album stays at a furious gallop along the lines of Iron Maiden’s “Rime of the Ancient Mariner,” allowing the King to tell the story through his alternately growling and piercingly high vocals. – Klon Waldrip
1. John Zacherle – Monster Mash
One of the stark beauties about Halloween is the combination of the childlike and whimsical with all things shadowy and macabre. There has been arguably no finer host for such silly and ghoulish festivities than The Cool Ghoul himself, Zacherley. First finding long-lasting fame and affection for being one of the first television horror hosts, Zacherle’s next move would be into the musical realm. While his debut 1960 album, Spook Along with Zacherle, is better known, it would be a heinous crime against spooky novelty records to ignore his second album, simply titled, Monster Mash. (What’s the punishment? Listening to a bunch of Drew’s Famous Party Cd’s, of course!) You not only get the man’s take on the Bobby “Boris” Pickett firm classic but also mutated version of classic songs, including my favorite, “Let’s Twist Again (Mummy Time is Here).” Any album involving the most dashing horror host with the most sonorous laugh and elements like “mummy juice” is a must-have for the season. – Heather Drain