It is now the season to legitimately terrify children, remorselessly trick or treat, legally play with gunpowder (fireworks) in public places, and openly confess to any unsavoury/demon-like tendencies.
And as with any festivity, you’ll need a solid playlist behind you while conducting your candy-fuelled pagan rituals.
As always, the ever-dependable Geeks Unleashed has the answer to all your choral conundrums…
The Number of the Beast by Iron Maiden
An all-time classic, the title track from Iron Maiden’s most famous album caused global controversy and helped to propel the band from a bunch of covetous pretenders into the position of international superstars.
Listen Out For: the solo section and rattling bass riff that follows.
Lyrical Highlight: “But I feel drawn towards the chanting hordes… seem to mesmerise, can’t avoid their eyes.”
Hocus Pocus by Focus
This odd little number has attracted a cult following since its release in 1972. An instrumental, Hocus Pocus takes the form of a rondo and is based around a central guitar riff interspersed by, of all things, whistling, gibberish and yodelling.
Listen Out For: the yodelling, naturally.
Hells Bells by AC/DC
There is a lot of emotion behind Hells Bells. Not only is it the first track from the first album released after Bon Scott’s death, but it was written in his memory. No pressure, then, for his successor Brian Johnson…
Listen Out For: the tentative opening riff from Angus Young.
Lyrical Highlight: “I’m gonna take you to hell, I’m gonna get ya, satan get ya… Hells Bells!”
Thriller by Michael Jackson
• Zombies in the music video.
• Produced by Quincey Jones.
• In the key of C♯ Modern Dorian.
• 104 million album copies sold.
• Video named Music of the Century.
This song deserves a knighthood. That is all.
Listen Out For: When the opening riff hits after the creepy build-up. Magic.
Lyrical Highlight: “There ain’t no second chance against the Thing with Forty Eyes.”
I Put a Spell on You by Screamin’ Jay Hawkins
Written in 1958, the iconic I Put a Spell on You is one of the most senior figures in modern musical lore. Not only was it covered by the fabulous Bette Midler in the 1993 hit film, Hocus Pocus¸ but the great Nina Simone herself put life to this masterpiece of shock rock.
Never mind Ray Charles, Tim Curry, Buddy Guy, Bonnie Tyler and Creedance Clearwater Revival… the list is seemingly endless.
Snappy, michevious, spooky and irresistible, I would stake my mortgage (if I had one) that I Put a Spell on You is as worthy a candidate for the title Anthem of Halloween as Jingle Bells is for Christmas.
And that isn’t just an excuse for a punchy conclusion.
Listen Out For: The explosive set-up to the outro in Bette Midler’s version.
Lyrical Highlight: I don’t care if you don’t want me, ’cause I’m yours, yours, yours anyhow.
Any other tracks you would have inserted instead? Please leave a comment and let us know!