Goldenplec wouldn’t be Goldenplec if we didn’t make an effort to bring you a playlist of excellent home-grown Halloween songs. Here’re ten of our favourites:
1. BATS: The Barley
Right back to These Ones Lay Eggs on their debut EP Cruel Sea Scientist BATS have penned songs dealing with monsters and other things that could eat you, as well as more cosmic sources of terror like gamma ray bursts. But there’s something about holding those up as Halloween songs that doesn’t really seem in the spirit of the band’s rationalism. Luckily they also wrote this song about the ignorance and prejudice behind witch hunts that shows what the real monster is (*SPOILER* it turns out it’s man).
2. Ciarán Smyth: The Great Panic
On the first track from his self-explanatory EP ‘Zombie! The Musical’, Ciarán Smyth uses ‘The Great Panic’ to set the scene. With a blend of it’s power-pop and showtunes, the EP is cheesy as hell, but it’s also as irresistible as a zombie’s hunger for brains.
3. WOUNDS: DEAD DEAD FUCKING DEAD
We’ll always have a place in our heart for the rawness of the version of this song on WOUNDS debut EP as opposed to the polish they put on it for the album. But if there’s a more Halloween-appropriate music video by an Irish band, we’d like to see it (no, really, tell us about it!).
4. Melodica Deathship: Blaxck Shjip Cxoming
Carving out a niche no one could have predicted between Sea Shanties, hip-hop and dub, Melodica Deathship are one of the most original bands to have come out of Ireland in the recent past. Their dark preoccupations mean they’ve plenty of appropriate songs, but we can’t help but associate this one with the song Pirate Jenny, one of our favourite picks from last year, which gives it the edge.
5. Fight Like Apes: Pull Off Your Arms and Let’s Play In Your Blood
We’re not saying we can recite the Plan 9 From Outer Space sample from Battlestations from memory, but… OK, yes we can. It’s that good. But it’s a bit tenuous to include the whole song just for its sample, so here’s another great one with a more appropriate level of graphic violence.
6. The Virgin Prunes: Pagan Lovesong
The Virgins Prunes were the other (and blatantly better) half of the Lypton Village Gang, also featuring an Evans boy on guitar. Sadly, even their reputation as the scariest thing ever to come out of Ireland was overshadowed by their better known comrades after Bono discovered the joys of leather trousers. They have, of course, got plenty of appropriate songs, but Pagan Lovesong is definitely a classic.
7. The Pogues: Down in the Ground Where the Dead Men Go
A title like that is almost enough on it’s own, but luckily for our efforts not to just cheat and use songs with Halloween-appropriate titles, the song more lives up to it with its tale of drunken encounters with the ghosts of famine victims in the Irish countryside at night.
8. Thin Lizzy: Killer on the Loose
Thin Lizzy easily deserve a spot on the Classic list, but we wanted to keep them with their fellow Irish musicians. This song is about a serial killer. Doesn’t need much explanation!
9. Go Home: Mots @ Halloween
Go Home is the totally super-serious occasional side project of members of several bands on Dublin’s Toast Office Records. Of their two recorded songs, one – ‘Mots @ Halloween’ is either a criticism of the cheap sexualisation of Halloween costumes, or a tribute to it. It’s hard to be sure.
10. Warlords of Pez: Do the Zombie
We’re not sure what this song is actually about (our parents keep saying they’ll tell us when we’re older) but it’s hard to argue with a band in costume. The song is pretty deliberately creepy sounding too. For bonus points, here they are playing it on a children’s show with the most ludicrously blatant censorship possible.
If you missed it earlier, you can check out our playlist of classic tunes here.