If you want to get spooky on Halloween, you’re going to need an equally spooky playlist.
Of course, there are the classics that you should have, like Michael Jackson’s thriller.
But what if that’s the only track you know?
Did you know we are currently living in a renaissance era of horror film? There are many soundtracks from current horror movies that would fit perfectly for a Halloween playlist.
Current sounds aren’t your only option.
The 80s were filled with synth heavy horror vibes that made movies like IT and Jason popular. There are many songs from multiple eras that you can add to your Halloween playlist.
We have raided the goblin fortress and made it out with spooky tracks that are sure to make your Halloween playlist pop.
We have prepared a guide that will explain how we decide which songs are worthy of haunting your Halloween playlist. We will then provide you with top 4 songs for your Halloween playlist.
How We Rate the Best Songs for Your Halloween Playlist, A Listener’s Guide
Deciding which songs to put on your Halloween playlist is a relatively easy task.
You need to take into account the vibe you are going for. Are you going for over the top horror induced scare? Or maybe you are more low-key and appreciate synth heavy music whose F-minors instill horror with its ambience.
Whichever your preference, we have come up with a guideline on how we choose the best songs for a Halloween playlist.
There are a number of factors that we use to judge if a song should be added to your Halloween playlist. We choose songs based on the following factors:
Vibe refers to the all around feeling of the track. Vibe takes into account atmosphere, aural perspective, and most importantly, whether or not the song inspires horror.
Let’s take for example the intro to Stranger Things. This intro is synth upon layered synth of building progressive F-minor chords that creates an air of tension.
Along with the build up of tension, you have a kick drum that is replicating a heightened heartbeat. This thumping rendition of a heartbeat helps bring up the horror vibes of the Stranger Things intro sequence.
You want to select a song with a great horror vibe so that you can get yourself into the Halloween spirit.
When we look for songs to add to a Halloween playlist, we look for what the lyrics are saying. If the lyrics give creepy vibes, or act to thrill in some form or fashion, we pay close attention to that song.
Think about what context you want to listen to your Halloween playlist at. If its for a workout, try a song with lyrics that push you to move, or quite literally run.
Finally, you could always opt for the creepy-pasta songs that have lyrics that send chills up your spine. There are songs out for all different types of horror playlists.
Top 4 Songs for Your Halloween Playlist
1. Thriller, Michael Jackson
No Halloween playlist would be complete without Thriller. This 1982 song is on one of the the best selling albums of all time. This spooky song was accompanied by a live action video that showed Michael Jackson turning into a werewolf and haunting his fictional girlfriend.
This track has all of the creepy, groovy horror vibes and lyrics that you will need for your Halloween playlist.
The vibes Thriller has are downright spooky and groovy. The song opens up with an ominous howl by a pack of wolves, or werewolves. An evolving synth takes over and sweeps back and forth in an almost hypnotic fashion.
Michael Jackson is definitely looking to push the listener into a horrified state – even the way in which Jackson sings evokes the telling of a horror story.
However, horror isn’t the only aspect Michael Jackson wants listeners to feel.
Thriller manages to add groove to horror in a way many artists have not been able to. Thriller is very easy to dance to, and will definitely be necessary for a Halloween playlist that
Moving on to the lyrics, the lyrics are perfect for a Halloween playlist. Let’s take a look at the following lyrics for Thriller:
It's close to midnight
Something evil's lurking from the dark
Under the moonlight
You see a sight that almost stops your heart
You try to scream
But terror takes the sound before you make it
You start to freeze
As horror looks you right between your eyes
These lyrics evoke a sense of horror, mystery, and overall thrill.
Michael Jackson takes the listener through a frightful event similar to how a camp instructor would tell campers a horror story. The lyrics reel the listener in and give quite the shock. It also helps that Michael Jackson’s vocal inflexions really sell the horror of what is happening in Thriller.
Thriller creates a vibe perfect for a horror filled playlist. It manages to have instrumentation that haunts the listener while having lyrics that give a fright!
We give Michael Jackson’s Thriller a rating of 5 out of 5.
2. Stranger Things Theme Song
The Stranger Things Intro theme song is one of the breakout horror hits of the past decade. Many fans of the show praise how the soundtrack manages to capture the 80s horror aesthetic so well. The Stranger Things theme song is no exception. This theme song manages to instill horror with simple evolving ARP synths.
To understand the vibe of the Stranger Things theme song, you need to understand how evolving synths instill horror.
Evolving synths fill a lot of open space on the track with deep almost underwater like terms. It really gives the listener the feeling that they are drifting without control, being taken on a journey by the music.
The Stranger Things theme song does this by increasing the tempo along with a heartbeat like kick drum. These effects come together to represent a feeling similar to running down a dark hallway from a scary ghoul or goblin.
The Stranger Things theme song does not have any lyrics.
We think this works in this songs favor and makes it an excellent addition to your Halloween Playlist. This song could fit many voids. It could serve as the backdrop to campfire side horror stories. This song could even be played in a makeshift haunted house.
This song’s lack of lyrics really allows this track to be horrific.
This song is a masterful entry in the horror genre. The beat is suspenseful and should serve as excellent background music on your Halloween playlist.
We give the Stranger Things theme song a rating of 5 out of 5.
3. The Ghost is Here, Skycycle
While the name of this group may sound completely unfamiliar, you may remember this song from a certain Scooby Doo Movie that took place in New Orleans.
The Ghost is Here is a song featured in the the movie, Scooby Doo on Zombie Island.
In this movie, Scooby Doo and friends take a trip to New Orleans and stumble upon a Zombie like cat cult.
This song takes place during one of the sequences that explains what the gang has been up to before the major events of Scooby Doo on Zombie Island.
In the sequence, the gang uncovers the true identities of folks pretending to be monsters. The song reflects a form of campy horror in which there may appear to be danger, but none is actually there.
The vibe of this song still attempts to be menacing as the guitar rifts coupled with organ rifts combine to give a haunting sound. Its horror done quick in this 1:29 song.
In addition to the composition of the track, the fast tempo the drums reach adds a form of panic to the song. This is definitely a song you would want on your playlist to pick up the mood and get you ready for a horror filled Halloween.
The simple lyrics of this song offer almost the perfect setup for real horror. An excerpt of the lyrics of this song are as follows:
“Another scary night
Another spooky fright
And you just might be in danger
Oh the ghost is here and it's always a fake
The ghost is here and there's no reason to shake
The ghost is here, oh give us a break
Even though the lyrics eventually reveal that the listener should be in no real danger at all, this is a song that you can easily use to trick yourself into believing you are safe.
Some of the best horror introduces moments of calm before moments of sheer panic. This song’s lyrics can serve as a playful group of teenager in a cabin the woods before calamity strikes. You could choose to add a truly horrifying song next in your playlist to really creep yourself, and your guests out.
While this song may not have the staying power to be a classic that lasts on its own, it definitely has a spot on a Halloween playlist.
We feel Halloween playlists should have calm periods and intense periods. This song serves as an excellent throwback that will probably put you in a nostalgic mood if you are a fan of Scooby Doo.
We give The Ghost is Here a rating of 4 out of 5.
4. A Nightmare on My Street, DJ Jazzy Jeff & Fresh Prince
A Nightmare on My Street is Willy Smith and DJ Jazzy Jeff’s take on the horror craze of the 80s. This song was inspired by Nightmare on Elm Street, and came out before Nightmare on Elm Street 4.
In this song, Will Smith’s character is surprised by Freddie Krueger, and has to escape him. Will Smith narrates his horror and fright over a spooky jazz like beat.
If you are looking for a horror song that you can jam out to, this is definitely it.
In terms of vibe, the spooky jazz definitely offers the perfect backdrop for Will Smith’s narration.
The song begins with a slight piano theme from A Nightmare on Elm Street that plays over an up-tempo track. The piano really works to make the narrative believable. Mixed with the slow Juno piano synths, the beat definitely gives off classic 80s horror vibes.
The lyrics of this song are goofy, but definitely involve a sense of horror. This specifically begins when Will Smith is explaining how he was taken by surprise by Freddie Krueger.
An excerpt from the lyrics are as follows:
“I walked in the house, the Big Bad Fresh Prince
But Freddy killed all that noise real quick
He grabbed me by my neck and said, ";Here's what we'll do.
We gotta lotta work here, me and you.
The souls of your friends you and I will claim.
You've got the body, and I've got the brain.";
I said, "Yo Fred, I think you've got me all wrong.
I ain't partners with NOBODY with nails that long!”
These lyrics are goofy, but show a real horror in the contrast between Will’s upbeat humor and Freddie’s murderous intent.
The combination of these two styles makes this song both fun and creepy at the same time.
We find these types of combinations allow a playlist to shine and remain unique. Will Smith and DJ Jazzy Jeff managed to make a hip hop horror track that is campy and still fits a horror vibe.
We think this is a perfect track to keep your playlist fresh.
We give A Nightmare on My Street a rating of 5 out of 5.
The Top 4 Halloween Songs to Add to Your Playlist Are Horrifically Fun
The songs we have selected for your Halloween playlist all work to evoke different emotions.
Some, like the Stranger Things theme, work to feel the air with tension and horror. Other tracks, like The Ghost is Here,” work to be campy fun that can make you nostalgic.
Whichever songs you add to your playlist, we guarantee these are certified fresh songs to make your Halloween playlist extraordinary.