Monday, October 7, 2013

Matt's Halloween Mixtape; Part One

Sonic Youth - Death Valley '69

With a few weeks left to go, it feels appropriate to kick things off with a song that leaves its intentions shrouded in mystery.  Sonic Youth uses this vagueness to its advantage by crafting an atmosphere of impending doom and an aggressive creepiness on its own terms.  Death Valley '69 was inspired by the ultra-creepy Manson Family; and the pulsating rhythm, screeching discordant guitars, and schizophrenic vocals stay true to the source material in the most satisfying way.  

The Horrorpops - Walk Like a Zombie

To introduce the other side of "Halloween music" are a Danish group of jubilant misfits (foreshadowing definitely intended) known as The HorrorPops.  Taking the "psychobilly" subgenre to the brink of caricature, The HorrorPops energetically combine 1950s rockabilly and doo-wop songcraft with direct lyrical references to the undead, the otherworldly, the luridly sexual, and the violent.  The result of course, is an ominous yet upbeat representation of whatever debauchery comes to life for Halloween.  

With that we reach the point of no return, the Halloween season is upon us.  It is said that this is the time of year in which the barrier between the living and the dead is at its weakest, and later in the week we will take a close look at some songs that unearth the darker depths of our human psyche…

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