New Music for Halloween Parties

Published on October 8th, 2015 in: Current Faves, Horror, Movies, Music, Music Reviews, Reissues, Retrovirus, Reviews, Soundtracks and Scores |

By Jeffery X Martin

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Are you a discerning celebrator of Samhain, looking for some different music to terrify and delight your friends with at your next public ritual? Or perhaps, you’re just a happy Halloweener, looking for some bombtracks for the next party. No worries, Fellow Traveler… we’ve got you sussed.

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PROFONDO ROSSO – 40TH ANNIVERSARY RE-RELEASE

You may have heard this classic soundtrack before, but never quite like this. This is an entire re-recording of the score by Claudio Simonetti’s Goblin. Same music, new nuances. Where the original score was heavily influenced by fusion jazz, this new version is a rocker. More bass, more guitar, more awesomeness. While it may never be the definitive version of this beloved music, it ranks pretty high. This release from Rustblade Records is replete with live performances that kick the energy level up even higher. Can you dance to it? Well, technically, you dance to anything, so we leave that up to you. (Release date: October 31 via Rustblade Records)

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CUB (ORIGINAL SOUNDTRACK) – STEVE MOORE

If you haven’t seen the Belgian horror movie Cub, you have denied yourself the discomforting pleasure of seeing one the most disturbing scary movies in years. Minimalist in its filmic approach, Cub aims straight for the gut. The thing that rounds out the atmosphere of the film is Steve Moore’s soundtrack, which has a great 1980s vibe to it. You’ll hear familiar tones (there’s a huge debt to be paid to Carpenter’s score for Halloween II) here, but all of the influences meld together seamlessly into a piece of music that is almost subliminal in its impact. It doesn’t need the movie to creep you out. If you play this during a party, people may want to go outside for fresh air more often, or leave feeling vaguely nauseated with no idea why. Now, that’s a party! (Release date: October 16 via Relapse Records)

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SHAPE SHIFT – ZOMBI

Steve Moore, composer of the Cub soundtrack, is also half of a band called Zombi. Their latest album, Shape Shift, feels like the Eighties on steroids. It’s dark electronica with live drums, and it is an ass kicker in every way. While they may draw inspiration from composers like John Carpenter or Fabio Frizzi, Zombi’s music runs closer to progressive rock then any of their predecessors. This album, especially the title track, serves as the logical meeting point between Failure and Kraftwerk. It’s synth-rock, heavy, and moody, perfect for a strong night of pseudo-Druidry. (Release date: October 16 via Relapse Records)

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C.H.U.D. (ORIGINAL SOUNDTRACK) – MARTIN COOPER & DAVID A. HUGHES

I didn’t even remember that C.H.U.D. had a soundtrack. Then again, I haven’t seen it since it came out in 1984. The movie is pretty sweet, all about cannibal monsters that live in the sewers. If you’re into that Eighties retro electronic stuff, hold on to your soft parts, because this is the real deal, straight from the drive-in. The soundtrack consists mostly of musical stings, but there’s a nice sense of unease grounding the whole album. Forgive it if it sounds a little like OMD in some places; it’s still a nice giant hunk of background music to play while your friends are just starting to get their buzz on and talking about how amazing each other’s homemade costumes are. (They’re not amazing. At all. Lé sigh.) (Release date: October 3 via Waxwork Records)

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CUT WITH THE CAKE KNIFE – ROSE McDOWALL

Oh, it’s that kind of party, is it? Just you and your Goth friends standing around the living room drinking absinthe and adjusting your custom-made fangs while The Hunger plays silently on a black and white television. Well, there’s a way to lighten up and not lose your Goth cred. Play Cut with the Cake Knife, the first solo album by Rose McDowall. She was half of Strawberry Switchblade, if you remember that fine band. This record was originally released as the Eighties were falling ill and dying in 1989. It suffers from a lot of the tropes of that decade. Too much reverb, gated guitars and drums, the vocal drowned and buried in the mix: all of these typical of the times. But what you do get are genuinely sad lyrics set against cheery music, redolent of mid-term Siouxsie and the Banshees, and the happiest rendition of “Don’t Fear the Reaper” ever recorded. Dance away, my Gothic friends, dance into the everlasting night! (Release date: September 18 via Sacred Bones)

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