Spooky season has arrived! Whether you’re the type that celebrates Halloween all autumn, the whole month of October, or even just on October 31st, we know that having a good Halloween playlist is half the fun.
We’ve put together our top 35 Halloween playlist picks perfect for getting yourself in the Halloween spirit or creating that spooky Halloween party atmosphere. If you’re planning a Halloween party playlist or simply don’t have the time to trawl through Halloween playlist YouTube yourself, check out our ultimate Halloween playlist here at Attitude Clothing.
1. Thriller – Michael Jackson
Regardless of what kind of music you’re into, you can’t have a Halloween playlist without Michael Jackson’s Thriller. It’s the OG Halloween tune that comes with its very own spine-chilling dance that makes it perfect for parties – plus it features horror legend Vincent Price if it wasn’t already iconic enough.
2. Monster Mash – Bobby “Boris” Pickett
A holiday favourite since the 60s, the graveyard smash Monster Mash is one of several novelty Halloween songs in this list that just can’t be missed off your Halloween playlist.
3. The Time Warp – Rocky Horror Picture Show Cast
Performed hundreds of times on film and stage, the Rocky Horror Picture Show has a cult following for fans of the alternative and out of this world. The Time Warp is one of the most famous songs from the musical, and is a party favourite for all seasons! Combine the iconic dance with the weird and almost supernatural horror vibe of Rocky Horror makes The Time Warp a must-have for your Halloween party playlist.
4. Psycho Killer – Talking Heads
Written from the point of view of a serial killer and with character such as Alice Cooper and Hannibal Lecter in mind, Psycho Killer has appeared on slasher TV and film soundtracks ever since!
5. I Was A Teenage Werewolf – The Cramps
Inspired by the 50s movie of the same name, I Was A Teenage Werewolf is one of many songs by The Cramps that references classic horror movie titles. The perfect Halloween playlist pick for fans of punk and classic horror movies!
6. Feed My Frankenstein – Alice Cooper
The Alice Cooper song Feed my Frankenstein is famed for its appearance in 1992’s Wayne’s World where Alice is seen performing the track live on stage. Featuring guest appearances from Joe Satriani, Steve Vai, Nikki Sixx, and Elvira, Feed My Frankenstein is a star-studded Halloween themed affair.
7. Dragula – Rob Zombie
One of Rob Zombie’s most recognisable songs. Opening with a line from Horror Hotel spoken by Christopher Lee, Dragula’s horror roots run deep by drawing inspiration from the drag racer from The Munsters, “DRAG-U-LA” and even features the Munster Koach in the music video!
8. Sympathy for the Devil – The Rolling Stones
Sympathy for the Devil is a legend of rock that has a history cemented in alternative pop culture and spooky incidents. When The Rolling Stones first released the track, there was a tremendous backlash from people who thought they were black magicians worshipping the devil, but audiences actually celebrated this flirtation with the dark side to Mick Jagger’s surprise.
At the Altamont Speedway Free Festival in the 60s, it was rumoured that concert-goer Meredith Hunter was killed while the Stones played Sympathy for the Devil, and at the studio where the band were recording the song for the 1968 film of the same name a huge fire started as they played which caused huge amounts of damage to the studio and their equipment.
Guns N’ Roses bravely took the song on in 1994 to be featured in the closing credits for Interview With A Vampire – but this too was ill fated as it caused an incident that would see Slash leave the band; he’s since said that Sympathy for the Devil is “the sound of the band breaking up.” – play either version at your Halloween party at your own peril!
9. People Are Strange – The Doors
Famously covered by the band Echo & The Bunnymen for the soundtrack of The Lost Boys – while it’s been covered plenty of times since, it’s often the Echo & The Bunnymen and version and The Doors original that stand the test of time. An anthem for outsiders, People Are Strange is a great Halloween hit for your playlist.
10. Bark At The Moon – Ozzy Osbourne
While Bark at the Moon may seem like a werewolf song on the surface, the music video has many more supernatural delights. The Bark at the Moon music video depicts Ozzy Osbourne as a Jekyll & Hyde character, appearing as a mad scientist who takes a potion that transforms him into the werewolf seen on the album cover before he’s committed to a mental asylum at the end of the video. Spooky stuff!
11. Living Dead Girl – Rob Zombie
Another Rob Zombie track packed full of horror movie references and appearing on many horror and thriller films since, Living Dead Girl has more than earned its right to appear on any Halloween playlist. Samples from films on the track include Lady Frankenstein Wes Craven’s The Last House on the Left and Daughters of Darkness, while Rob Zombie also references Vincent Price’s villain in Dr. Goldfoot and the Bikini Machine and the 1974 film Ilsa: She-Wolf of the SS. Living Dead Girl appears in Bride of Chucky and the remake of Psycho as well as The Crow: Salvation Soundtrack in 2000.
12. Ghost Town – The Specials
Offering a bleak but realistic view of Britain in the 80s, The Specials’ Ghost Town transforms Britain into a ghost town worthy of the spookiest and most haunting settings. Although not strictly Halloween themed, the title and ghostly sound effects are enough to tip in into Halloween playlist territory!
13. Bat Out of Hell – Meatloaf
The 9:52 epic Bat Out of Hell has inspired a TV series and a musical in its name and has been honoured with the official “Classic Song” title for its enduring appeal. Inspired by Hitchcock’s Psycho and following the tragic journey of a biker in love which ends in a fatal crash, Bat Out of Hell may only have a tenuous link to Halloween with its title and imagery, but it’s sure to be a people pleaser at any Halloween party.
14. Welcome To My Nightmare – Alice Cooper
The title track to one of Alice Cooper’s most successful albums, Welcome To My Nightmare is a staple of many a Halloween playlist. The shock rock legend even performed this spooky song on The Muppet Show!
15. The Number of the Beast – Iron Maiden
Another devil-centric song to cause outrage amongst religious groups, The Number of the Beast quickly became one of Iron Maiden’s most popular songs thanks to the controversy stirred up through protests and organised burning of the album. Inspired by a nightmare band-founder and bassist Steve Harris had after watching the sequel to The Omen, The Number of the Beast opens with a reading from The Book of Revelations by actor Barry Clayton for extra spook-factor.
16. Highway To Hell – AC/DC
A great party tune which would be one of the last lead singer Bon Scott wrote before his death, Highway To Hell fits in with the Halloween theme while just being a good song to get everyone in the party mood.
17. Voodoo Child – Jimi Hendrix
Packed full of voodoo symbolism, Jimi Henrdix’s Voodoo Child (Slight Return) is hailed as one of the greatest pieces of guitar work ever recorded.
18. Fear of the Dark – Iron Maiden
Halloween is a time of facing your fears and phobias – according to lead singer Bruce Dickinson, Steve Harris wrote Fear of the Dark about his own literal fear of the dark!
19. Ghostbusters – Theme Song
Written by Ray Parker Jr as the theme for the 1984 film, Ghostbusters swiftly became much more than a theme tune. Covered by artists such as Run-D.M.C, The Rasmus and Fall Out Boy over the years, Ghostbusters has become a staple of Halloween parties and pop culture at large.
20. This Is Halloween – Marylin Manson Cover
Written by Danny Elfman for Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas, This Is Halloween is a classic Disney song that celebrations all things Halloween. Still featured in Disney parades today, This Is Halloween is great for Halloween lovers of all ages, but if you’re looking for a slightly darker take on the original, we can’t recommend the Marylin Manson cover enough. Recorded for a special edition of the film’s soundtrack called Nightmare Revisited, Manson appears along a huge range of alternative artists to cover the soundtrack in full.
21. Kidnap The Sandy Claws – Korn Cover
Another track from the Nightmare Revisited that we just couldn’t miss is Korn’s cover of Kidnap The Sandy Claws. It might live in that uncertain place between being a Halloween song and being a Christmas song, but we’ll take any excuse to listen to this killer cover.
22. I Put A Spell On You – Hocus Pocus Cast
Many will argue that no-one can do I Put A Spell On You better than Nina Simone, not even Marilyn Manson himself, but those people haven’t seen Hocus Pocus. Fans of the film will understand just how brilliant this cover of I Put A Spell On You is and why it’s a must for any Halloween playlist.
23. (Don’t Fear) The Reaper – Blue Oyster Cult
Though a seemingly innocent song about eternal love according to songwriter Buck Dharma, (Don’t Fear) The Reaper has some spooky undertones. Many believe that the song is actually about a murder-suicide pact, and the cover art certainly points to a strong connection with mysticism. Whether it was intended to have a creepy undertone or not, (Don’t Fear) The Reaper has appeared in spooky settings such as the movie Halloween and in the intro of Stephen King’s novel The Stand.
24. Zombie – The Cranberries
A protest song written about IRA bombings, the title and metaphor of a zombie throughout the song mean that The Cranberries’ Zombie has appeared on many a Halloween playlist throughout the years – and rightly so! Regardless of the real meaning, it’s a great song that’s stood the test of time all year round, but especially at Halloween.
If the sound of the Cranberries isn’t up your street, why not take on this heavy metal cover of Zombie from Bad Wolves performed in Dolores’ honour instead?
25. Bad Moon Rising – Creedence Clearwater Revival
Bad Moon Rising is a song about the impending apocalypse (though often interpreted as a song about a werewolf) that has appeared on a huge range of horror movies and TV shows from An American Werewolf in London to Twilight Zone: The Movie, Supernatural, Teen Wolf and The Walking Dead.
26. Heads Will Roll – Yeah Yeah Yeahs
The music video for Heads Will Roll is what gives the song a true Halloween edge. Directed by Richard Ayoade, the music video sees the band perform for a dancing werewolf who then transforms before killing the band and audience – in the gory conclusion, Karen O continues to sing despite her head being severed from her body.
27. Disturbia – Rhianna
Okay most of us wouldn’t describe Rhianna as alternative, but the killer music video to Disturbia has given the song a reputation for being a Halloween favourite among the mainstream, so we thought we’d give it a mention. Beginning in a surreal, circus-like torture chamer, Rhianna appears in a prison, a gas chamber and covered in tarantulas. A departure from the norm for pop stars, Disturbia is worth adding to your Halloween playlist for the creepy video alone.
28. The Addams Family – Theme Song
Everyone’s favourite spooky family The Addams Family have become as iconic as their theme tune. Played on harpsichord and featuring the famous finger-snaps, The Addams Family theme song has appeared across pop culture from The Simpsons to Elvira over the years making it an instantly recognisable Halloween tune.
29. Hells Bells – AC/DC
The first track on the Back In Black album following the death of Bon Scott, Hells Bells begins with a haunting bell slowly tolling before the band kicks in with another Halloween party favourite.
30. Red Right Hand – Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds
A signature song from Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds, the title is heavily influenced by John Milton’s Paradise Lost in which the red right hand is referred to as the vengeful hand of God. While the song may reflect on power from above rather than below, the threat in the song is palpable scoring in an appearance in the first three films of the Scream franchise and films such as Hellboy and Cirque Du Freak: The Vampire’s Assistant long before the Peaky Blinders picked it up as their theme song.
31. Bela Lugosi’s Dead – Bauhaus
Often considered the first gothic rock record, who can resist the disturbing sounds of Bauhaus’ Bela Lugosi’s Dead? Though horror movie star Bela Lugosi died 23 years before Bauhaus would write the song in his name, it mourns the death of this horror film star who did so much to establish the image of the modern vampire in his 1931 appearance in Dracula. Hugely influential on goth culture, Bela Lugosi’s Dead has appeared in numerous films and tv shows from The Hunter to Supernatural and American Horror Story: Hotel to name a few.
32. Tear You Apart – She Wants Revenge
Speaking of American Horror Story: Hotel – this scene featuring the song Tear You Apart has become one of the most iconic from the American Horror Story series. Introducing Lady Gaga’s character The Countess and her lover Donovan played by Matt Bomer, the song has become synonymous with the sexy vampire vibe ever since.
33. Mr. Crowley – Ozzy Osbourne
Inspired by the infamous Aleister Crowley and a deck of tarot cards, the song Mr. Crowley is packed full of occultist symbolism. Starting with a haunting keyboard solo and featuring one of the best known heavy metal guitar solos. A classic heavy metal song with a seriously occult influence, you can’t miss it off you Halloween playlist.
34. Tainted Love – Marilyn Manson
We all love the Soft Cell original, but Marilyn Manson’s version of Tainted Love is an unmissable alternative take on the 80s pop hit. Manson’s version became a top 5 hit in tons of countries across the world and even won a number of Kerrang! Awards for the single and accompanying music video. If the original didn’t have enough scary stalker vibes for you, Manson’s version certainly will.
35. Blood – My Chemical Romance
Released as a hidden track on the special edition of The Black Parade, Blood is a short but sweet track about vampiric bloodlust that starts at 1:30 on the 14th track of the album. It’s a hidden gem that’s more than worthy of a spot on your Halloween playlist!
Honestly, this list could go on forever – but if you’re making a must-have Halloween mix with an alternative music twist, we think that these tracks are a great place to start!
Anything we’ve missed off that you think we should add to our Halloween playlist? Let us know in the comments! Don’t forget to pick up your perfect Halloween wardrobe here at Attitude Clothing.