It’s almost Halloween, and if you’re like me, you’ve been spending your free time watching scary movies and thinking up costume ideas. These sorts of movies are usually known for blood, boobs, and bad jokes, but the music that accompanies them is important, too. For instance, high-pitched shrieking noises automatically bring to mind Psycho, and the Jaws score will forever instill fear in the hearts of swimmers. But what about the actual soundtracks—you know, those tie-in compilations that bring together artists old and young, new and vintage, huge and dollar-bin-ready? After the jump, seven frightful flicks that were packaged with good tunes.
7. Urban Legends
I put this one in there because Bonnie Tyler’s “Total Eclipse of the Heart” is my No. 1 karaoke song. Other notable hits off this mediocre ’90s horror flick (inspired concept, but poor execution… except for the scene with the dog in the microwave, ugh) include the Dawson’s Creek staple “I Don’t Want To Wait” by Paula Cole, “Zoot Suit Riot” by Cherry Poppin’ Daddies, and both the Ohio Players’ and Red Hot Chili Peppers’ renditions of “Love Rollercoaster.”
6. An American Werewolf In Paris
Remember the music video for Bush’s “Mouth,” where Julie Delpy turned into a werewolf? So sick. So ’90s. Standouts from this one include a Cake cover of Barry White’s “Never Never Gonna Give You Up”, Smash Mouth’s “Walkin’ On The Sun,” and a Skinny Puppy song my mom always made me skip. Wait, actually…. In retrospect, this soundtrack is pretty horrible. Except for “Mouth.”
Two Words: Marky Mark. Above, you can listen to him rap “The Illest,” poorly. Two more words: “Wild Horses,” which is forever married to the rollercoaster scene in my mind. There are a couple of good Bush songs on here, too. (Can you see a theme developing?)
4. The Lost Boys
An obvious inclusion, but not because of the spooky children’s choir-filled theme song “Cry Little Sister,” or the great Echo and the Bunnymen cover of The Doors’ “People Are Strange.” The pick hit here is by Lou Gramm of the 80’s powergroup Foreigner; “Lost in the Shadows” is a dance-party-worthy, synth-filled jam that makes you want to make out with Vampire Jason Patric (or Kiefer Sutherland if you’re into blonds?) and ride a motorcycle through an abandoned building.
3. The Crow
The Cure, The Violent Femmes, a somewhat inspired Nine Inch Nails cover of Joy Division’s “Dead Souls” and the still-played-on-the-radio track “Big Empty” by Stone Temple Pilots made this soundtrack worthy of the list. If you look for these songs on YouTube, you’ll find a ton of tribute videos to the late Brandon Lee.
2. The Devil’s Rejects
I wouldn’t recommend seeing this movie, which gave me nightmares for at least a month. Plus, you don’t really want any of the soundtrack’s classic Southern rock gems—some great Terry Reid deep cuts, Elvin Bishop’s “Fooled Around And Fell In Love”—to be associated with any part of this movie. R.I.P., “Funk #49”. I can never listen to you again.
1. Blade 2
The raison d’être for this list, the best soundtrack in the history of ever. Don’t laugh. OK, laugh. But Roni Size and Cypress Hill go together like peanut butter and jelly, and the Trina/Rah Digga/Groove Armada collabo is untouchable. Whoever decided to put together rappers and electronic artists needs to win a “Dude, you fucking rule” Grammy. I still spin tracks off of this album, even though it seems to be out of print.