Halloween is nearly upon us, so we’re sharing with you our picks of some of the best scare-mongering tracks that will have you dancing like a zombie all night long. These songs are perfect for a Halloween party, just enjoying by yourself, or with the family on the scariest (and most fun) night of the year.
Michael Jackson – Thriller
Why not start off with a classic? Any Halloween bash would feel out of place without Thriller in there. This Michael Jackson Halloween staple, with its terrifying video (for the time), is almost as famous as the song itself. Featuring the best ever zombie-choreographed dance scene ever, and an evil laugh from scare-king Vincent Price, it wouldn’t be a Halloween playlist without this track.
Mike Oldfield – Tubular Bells
For anyone that’s seen The Exorcist, this track is frightening as hell. As the tinkling synths plough through the track you can’t help but be reminded of spinning heads and pea-green vomit.
This is Halloween – The Nightmare Before Christmas
Tim Burton’s masterpiece movie has scared and amused kids and adults alike for years, and the songs featured are some of the best in an animated movie. Catchy, well-written and perfectly scored for scares.
Harry Belafonte – Day-O
Made synonymous with Halloween after featuring in another Tim Burton movie, Beetlejuice. It may not seem like a song for the scariest day of the year, but watching the cast’s limbs flailing around to the track due to being possessed gives the track a surprisingly dark edge. And the scene with the giant hands coming out of prawn cocktail still makes me jump.
Eminem – The Monster
Rapping his way onto the Halloween playlist is Eminem, with a track full of lyrics about real-life scares such as depression, drugs and OCD. A Halloween thinker.
Bobby Pickett – Monster Mash
Another classic from all the way back in 1962. Great for the one foot twisting dance; the kind you see Mia and Vince doing in Pulp Fiction. It’s fun and kitsch, if not that scary.
Ray Parker Jr – Ghostbusters
Everyone knows this song and it’s probably the most catchy on the list. Can anyone name another Ray Parker Jr song? No, me neither.
Nina Simone – I Put A Spell On You
Such a great tune. Amazing vocals, haunting melody and great to slow things down a bit as the clock strikes midnight…
Alice Cooper – Feed My Frankenstein
The first track to feature the nuts and bolts monster of various people’s body parts. Alice Cooper does an excellent job of a camped up horror classic, which also features in the movie Wayne’s World, giving it extra bonus points.
The Cranberries – Zombie
One for the grunge-lovers. The Cranberries 1994 classic’s sultry sound and heavy chorus littered with political messages is deeper than your usual Hallow’s Eve track, but perfectly able to stand up with the rest. And it’s called Zombie.
The Misfits – Astro Zombies
How about a bit of Punk? Fast-paced, downright dirty and disturbing lyrics helps Astro Zombies make the cut. Everyone lagging a bit at your party? Slap this bad boy on.
Backstreet Boys Everybody (Backstreet’s Back)
It might not be on many people’s Halloween playlists but definitely on ours. Great creepy sounds mixed in with a 90s boy band? Why not! The video takes tips from Thriller with a monster-laden dance-scene, but also features a pretty terrible looking Werewolf and Mummy.
The Rolling Stones – Sympathy For The Devil
A song about the devil by The Stones? Got to be on the list. Jagger recounts atrocities committed throughout the history of humanity from the perspective of Beelzebub himself. Oh, and the music is out of this world.
Stairway to Heaven – Led Zeppelin
This track is a must due to the constant rumours relating to spinning the record backwards. Rumour has it, if you do this, you’ll hear a message to the devil. Never been proven and denied by the band, people take from it what they will from trying it out, but it makes a perfectly creepy thing to try if you have a record deck and copy of the song on Halloween.