Last year, I was feeling all boo hoo about the fact that no one, and I mean no one comes to our house on Halloween. Call it fear of strangers with candy (who might shove a razor blade in that Snickers bar, or snap off a hypodermic needle in that family size peanut butter cup), or, more realistically, it’s the fact that I live in a condo complex where the motto is “A place for the newlywed … and the nearly dead.” Yeah, there really aren’t any kids around here, so we just gave up buying candy for those non-existent trick or treaters. So, that leaves me with you, dear reader and lover of the ye olde Mix Six, to spoil you with musical treats. So grab a mug of bitches brew and get ready for a Mix Six Six Six for ’09!
“Freaks Come Out At Night,” Whodini (Download)
You can’t always start out a mix with a top of the hour cooker. Nope, sometimes you gotta dig a little deeper and find a song that signals the keynote of the mix in a “deep cut” kind of way. Sure, this tune by Whodini has a pretty long shelf life because, well, the title of this song pretty much guarantees that it’s going to end up on a Halloween mix. And look: it did!
“Intergalactic,” Beastie Boys (Download)
Okay, so Dunphy featured this classic (yeah, it’s a classic) Beastie Boys tune on his Mix Tape a few weeks ago, but it’s mixes so well with Whodini that I couldn’t resist. Plus, it has a kind of freaky vibe that fits well with Halloween … so there!
“Disturbia,” Rhianna (Download)
Perhaps the “Bum, bum, dee, dum, bum, bum, dee dum, dum” alone will drive you crazy, but before you start pointing your bony finger at me for spiking in an obvious choice, just get over your snobbish Pitchfork attitude and feel the pop loveliness. Oh, and don’t pretend that you wouldn’t be dancing to this one if the lights were off and you found yourself at the Exotic Erotic Ball in the city by the bay.
“Decode,” Paramore (Download)
You gotta wonder if the producers of New Moon approached Paramore and asked if they would write another “Decode” for the soundtrack. I’d like to think that their answer was, “Um, we’re not a Twilght band okay? We had a huge following before your vamp film, so the answer is no — unless, you know, you think the songs on our new album suck.”
“Devil Inside,” INXS (Download)
When all else fails, you gotta pull out the heavy hitters — and “Devil Inside” is one of those songs in a Halloween mix that doesn’t fail to deliver. Plus, you have a dead lead singer, and that just adds to the devilish fun.
“Monster,” Fred Schneider & The Shake Society (Download)
I do believe “Monster” is the strangest creation Fred Schneider has ever come up with. Sure, it’s got a beat and you can dance to it, but when it comes to Halloween, what’s more scary? A Barry Manilow song in the mix, or the monster in Fred’s pants?
“People Are Strange,” Echo and the Bunnymen (Download)
It’s a little odd that Echo started channeling the Doors, but that Ray Manzarek keyboard on “Bedbugs and Ballyhoo” and of course, on “People Are Strange,” isn’t all that odd when you consider that Manzarek was a fairly major player in the punk/new wave scene in the ’80s. His work producing X was invigorating, but it didn’t have the magic bullet needed to convince the band that the music they were making in 1987 was any good (they all thought their eponymous LP was pretty much crap). But even with all that, I still like this cover.
“Superstition,” Stevie Wonder (Download)
Stevie played almost all the instruments on this album (except for the brass section stuff), and what I love is the kind of odd time feel he’s able to play on the drums. Superstition isn’t really a Halloween song, but is sure spices up a mix roughly midway through!
“Voodoo Lady,” Ween (Download)
Now, here’s one song that’s got Halloween written all over it. But the album cover is pure eye candy for the 13-year-old boy in many a-male grouping. Interestingly enough, the band members never met the model who posed for the cover (according to the Wiki on the album), and I’m guessing that’s been a great career disappointment of theirs ever since.
‘”Halloweenhead,” Ryan Adams (Download)
Well, they do call it nose candy, don’ t they?
“The Ghost in You,” Psychedelic Furs (Download)
Ah, this song is a treat. It’s has all the things I love about good new wave music: tasteful synth, a semi-dark theme, a great chorus, and plenty of guyliner! Also, this is one of those songs that’s weaved into a mix just to remind people that you’re not stuck in a certain time period.
“Monster Hospital,” Metric (Download)
Metric is one of those bands who alternate between pop bliss and wannabe alt rock band. Personally, I like their poppier moments (like their current album), but this tune certainly strikes the right tone in this mix.
“Summer Breeze,” Type ‘O’ Negative (Download)
Hey now! Despite the erotic PG-13 album cover (one I’m sure Ween would have loved to have), this tune was featured in the I Know What You Did Last Summer and is creepy enough that even Seals & Crofts probably pissed themselves with fear after hearing this for the first time.
“Fistful of Terror,” The Bomboras (Download)
I don’t know what it is about surf music, but it certainly fits with Halloween — especially if you’re ripping it up like the Bomboras do on “Fistful of Terror.”
“Hellbound,” The Breeders (Download)
I’m a big fan of Tanya Donelly’s work with Belly and her first solo album, but lately she’s been stuck in mommy mode in her songwriting. So it’s really refreshing to hear some of the late ’80s work she did with Kim Deal to remind me that the chick could rock once upon a time.
“The Ballad of Peter Pumpkinhead,” XTC (Download)
I think among the Popdose staffers, Andy Partridge ranks in the top three of personal favorite artists, but we all know him affectionately as “Wanker” — and we do mean it in the way one would call a good friend a douchebag. The Halloween theme is not really apparent in this song, but according to Partridge (well, at least according the Wiki), he wrote it about a Halloween pumpkin he carved and stuck on a fence post. All that government conspiracy from a pumpkin head? Now who’s the real halloween head, huh?
“Bad Things,” Jace Everett (Download)
Have you been watching True Blood? No? Well, it was kind of hit and miss the first season (and the first part of the second), but the show found its mojo and rode it home in a satisfying way. What’s not to be missed is the opening credit theme song by Jace Everett.
“Millie and Billie,” Alice Cooper (Download)
And what better way to close out an 18-song set than with an Alice Cooper number about a loving couple who happen to be “criminally insane”? Happy Halloween, bitches!