Music  |  Features

Current Events: Ghouls, Ghouls, Ghouls - A Halloween Playlist

October 31, 2008  |  10:28am
“Little Drop of Poison” - Tom Waits 
As we learned in the last blurb, Robert Johnson died from poisoning. So we follow with this chilling Waits tune and its typically spine-tingling lyrics: “I’m all alone / I smoke my friends down to the filter / But I feel much cleaner / After it rains … Did the Devil / Make the world / While God was sleeping / You’ll never get a wish from a bone.” Every time I hear Waits sing it, I wanna pull the covers up over my head. 

This loping, swamp-creeper of a kiss-off brings the chills in spades. Hands-down the best track off the band’s latest album, the Danger Mouse-produced Attack & Release


“Scarecrow” - Beck 
This song from Guero finds Beck metaphorically inhabiting its titular character, and features some really cool synthetic crow caws and top-notch lyrics: “My soul’s just a silhouette / In the ashes of a cigarette … Crows are pullin’ at my clothes / The wind got my fingers froze … all alone by a barren wall / The scarecrow’s only scarin’ himself.” For good measure, Beelzebub also appears in this song’s first verse. 



“In Dreams” - Roy Orbison 
If candy-colored clowns tiptoeing to your room at night as you teeter on the edge of slumber isn't freaky enough, Dennis Hopper's obsession with the song in David Lynch's Blue Velvet puts “In Dreams” over the edge and onto this playlist: "I'll send ya a love letter, straight from my heart, fucker!" 

In Dreams - Roy Orbison


"Nightmare on My Street" - DJ Jazzy Jeff & the Fresh Prince 
After that very tangible detour into madness, it’s time to turn on the lights for some campy Halloween fun. Hence, Will Smith’s ode to ’80s horror classic Nightmare on Elm Street. Check those beats, y’all! Old-school!

Nightmare On My Street - DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince


“Hell” - Squirrel Nut Zippers 
OK, it’s back to the funhouse…. or is it madhouse?!?! Woo-hah-hah-hah-ha! This über-bizarre (ironic?) old-school cabaret number was the breakthrough hit for this Chapel Hill, N.C., group. And the video was as mischievously menacing as the song.

Hell - Squirrel Nut Zippers


“Bad Kids” - The Black Lips 
Rolling right along, we’ve got another song teeming with Halloween-appropriate mischief. This catchy little number from Atlanta’s Black Lips is dedicated to all my tricksters (not treaters) out there who used wreak havoc in their neighborhoods on Halloween night—that’s right, I’m talking about putting M-80s in pumpkins!

Bad Kids - The Black Lips


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