The horror movie soundtrack is kind of a time honored tradition. All films of course need music but few genres rely so heavily on it more than horror. From Psycho to Halloween and beyond, itâ€™s the sounds of horror that stimulate the senses. Then, really starting in the early 80â€™s, pop/rock songs were added to the mix as selling points.
I have a lot of music, almost as much as I have movies. This is a list of my all-time favorite horror soundtracks, the cds and cassettes which sat atop my stereo for months in heavy rotation. You will not find any albums with the phrase â€śMusic Inspired byâ€ť, that has to be one of the most dishonest attempts at cash grabbing in recent years. If you think Iâ€™m wrong, please put on Texas Chainsaw Massacre-The Album and tell me what Fear Factory, Pantera, Hatebreed or Static X have to do with a group of kids on their way to a Skynnard concert in 1974! Sorry, tangent. I hope you agree with some of my list and please let me know what you think should be on here.
13. Trick or Treat (1986)
This is kind of a guilty pleasure soundtrack. The entire soundtrack is done by Fastway! I first heard it at a friendâ€™s house on vinyl. He was a serious metal head and introduced me to the likes of Maiden and Sabbath. Oddly enough, this is the only thing that stuck, funny how things work out.
12. Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2 (1986)
The Cramps and Onigo Boingo were almost mandatory for a horror soundtrack in the mid 80â€™s. And TCM 2 is a good example of that. I loved this album and with the film set partially at a radio station, it was a good opportunity to use lots of music and still have it fit the movie. Nice job!
11. Queen of the Damned (2002)
Sometimes a movie sucks so much ass but can still be well represented musically. Case in point is 2002â€™s Queen of the Damned. The film suffered from bad casting and horrible scripting with the studio mashing both The Vampire Lestat and Queen of the Damned into one 100 plus minute mess. On the other hand, great care was taken with the music since it is a main focal point of the second novel. Bands providing the sound include Marilyn Manson, Wayne Static of Static X, Jay Gordon of Orgy and alternate versions by songwriter and Korn front man Jonathan Davis.
10. Return of the Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1994)
This film gets no love. Granted, the ending is a bit of a head scratcher but it does have more going for it than part III and one of those things is the soundtrack. Not only the score, but the rock songs as well have a hazy dry quality to them that fits well with the Texas visuals. Music by Roky Erickson, Deborah Harry and an awesomely haunting track from The Coffee Sergeants, you could do worse!
9. The Devilâ€™s Rejects (2005)
This, much like the film, is an ode to the 70â€™s and early 80â€™s, the days of Two Lane Black Top, Aloha Bobby and Rose and countless other Road/ Crime flicks. The soundtrack reflects that with The Allman Brothers , Terry Reid, Joe Walsh and Three Dog Night. Itâ€™s perfect for good old fashion hanging out, drinking with friends till the wee hours of the night.
8. Hardware (1990)
An odd cyberpunk horror film, Hardware has an odd soundtrack to match, but itâ€™s equally hard to beat. If industrial grind is what youâ€™re in the mood for, then this is it. Great noise for a raining muggy trip through the city sprinkled with kick ass music from Motorhead, Ministry, Iggy Pop, and Public Image Limited.
7. I Know What You Did Last Summer (1997)
I get a lot of shit for this but goddamn it, I like it! Jennifer Love Hewitt is gorgeous, Sarah Michelle Gellar is as annoying and bitchy bird woman that she always is, Freddy Prinze Jr. is bland as always and Ryan Philippe brings his best spoiled rich boy shtick to the party! Type Oâ€™Negative simply rocks their rendition of Summer Breeze and Offspring brings the only song from their catalogue that doesnâ€™t make me sick. Also featuring L7, Soul Asylum, and Toad the Wet Sprocket!
6. Book of Shadows: Blair Witch 2 (2000)
Unjustly hated for no good reason, Joe Berlingerâ€™s film remains one of the most misunderstood and under-appreciated films of the 90â€™s. Just for the record, I stand by that statement whole-hardheartedly! Unfortunately the soundtrack rides the same wave. Pick it up and you wonâ€™t be sorry. Marilyn Manson, POD, Knicleback, Rob Zombie, Queens of the Stone Age and more. Who are you kidding? The soundtrack is great!
5. The Lost Boys (1986)
Who are you lying to? You know you had this soundtrack. EVERYBODY had this soundtrack and rode around on dirt bikes with trench coats on. Yes we were nerds, but we thought we looked cool blasting Lou Graham, INXS, Roger Daltry, and The Doors. The fun doesnâ€™t have to end, pop that CD back in!
4. Hellraiser III: Hell on Earth (1992)
Is the movie good? Could have been a lot better but could have been a lot worse. This soundtrack starts hard and ends hard but manages to sprinkle a little lite rock in between. Motorhead, Bowieâ€™s Tin Machine, Material Issue, Soup Dragons and Ten Inch Men. Sure itâ€™s a better soundtrack than a movie, but a least itâ€™s a better soundtrack than a movie. Nuff said!
3. House Of 1000 Corpses (2003)
Like everything with this movie, the soundtrack found its way into our hearts. Pre 1977 jams from The Ramones, Buck Owens (oddly, the best and catchiest song on the album), plus all new Zombie tracks including the awesome â€śPussy Liquorâ€ť and the criminally ignored â€śLittle Piggyâ€ť.
2. The Crow (1994)
Just brilliant! Every song on the album kicks ass. And even though not everyone loves everything, nothing here screams to be passed over! A lot of the best songs here are original and unavailable anywhere else which makes this album a must have for your collection. One of the Cureâ€™s best songs â€śBurnâ€ť (which harkens back to the â€śDisintegrationâ€ť era) sets the pace. Nine Inch Nails covers Joy Division, Rollins Band, Stone Temple Pilots, My Life with the Thrill Kill Kult, Medicine, Helmut, Jesus and Mary Chain. Hell, this album transcends. If you donâ€™t own it, you should.
1. Return of the Living Dead (1985)
Possibly the greatest horror soundtrack EVER! OK, I know Iâ€™m getting a little crazy but I LOVE this album. Hell, I love it on cassette, three different Vinyl pressings, CD, and even extended bootleg edition. I have more copies of this soundtrack than Anchor Bay Evil Dead DVDs (You know what Iâ€™m talking about ;p). For a horror film from 1985, one of the things that is most amazing is that itâ€™s still in print. Again, many of the songs on this album are unique to it, which keeps the album relevant! The Cramps, T.S.O.L., The Damned. The only thing that would make this album better is a song from the Misfits (and it doesnâ€™t even need it!) OK Iâ€™m done. Iâ€™m gonna go throw it on right now!
Send More Zombies: Return of the Living Dead (1985) http://ow.ly/d2Qjt
The Lost Art of Art http://ow.ly/d2QdD