Spooky Tunes!

When it comes to your Halloween playlist, we’ve got you covered. Plus, we have an Alpha version of our upcoming Web Player to try out, with a playlist feature and more! (Just sign in, click “Player,” and look in the lower right corner.)

This year, the Murfie staff recommends some albums that range from dark and scary to corny and fun. Here they are!

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Eternal Youth
Future Bible Heroes
(Liz’s pick)

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Walk Among Us
Misfits
(Jason’s pick)

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Featuring: Dr. Gruesome…
Snow White’s Poison Bite
(Jason’s pick)

Monster Mash

Monster Mash
Peter Pan Records
(Kayla’s pick)

Great Hitchcock Movie Thrillers
Bernard Herrmann
(John’s pick)

Jaws Soundtrack

Jaws Soundtrack
John Williams
(Matt’s pick)

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Rocky Horror Picture Show
Richard O’Brien
(Brandon’s pick)

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Pre-Millennium Tension
Tricky
(Marc’s pick)

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Nearly God
Nearly God
(Marc’s pick)

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Twin Peaks
Angelo Badalamenti
(Marc’s pick)

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Soused
Scott Walker + Sunn O)))
(Marc’s pick)

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The X Files: The Album
Various Artists
(Andrew’s pick)

Happy Halloweeeeen! :-)

Halloween at Murfie!

It’s Halloweeeen time! Even though it’s not the 31st, it’s safe to say that many folks will be celebrating the year’s spookiest holiday this weekend.

Our staffers have some great Halloween album picks for you, along with great stories to share (with pictures)!

Hey pumpkin!

Name: Gao
Favorite album for fall/Halloween: Thriller (by Michael Jackson) has always been a favorite. In fact, my family did the Thriller dance at my sister’s wedding reception.
Best Halloween costume ever: My sisters made me a dinosaur costume one year. They even built a tail! I stomped around and called myself Gaozilla.
What I plan to dress up as this year: This is the first year I’ve bought a costume and didn’t make it. I’ll be a pirate. ARGH!

Name: Jeff
Favorite album for fall/Halloween: Scream, Dracula, Scream! by Rocket from the Crypt.
Best Halloween costume ever: Andy Warhol (really sad I don’t have a picture).
What I plan to dress up as this year: Washed up, out of shape Justin Bieber.

Scary!

Name: Daniella
Favorite album for fall/Halloween: Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas by Danny Elfman.
Best Halloween costume ever: Nerd costumes have included Companion Cube (from Portal), Cthulhu, Harry Potter, and more nerdiness…
What I plan to dress up as this year: This year I’m going as Lumpy Space Princess (assuming I can find myself a purple beehive wig).

Goodnight moon!

Name: Tiffany
Favorite album for fall/Halloween: Bloodletting by Concrete Blonde.
Best Halloween costume ever: It’s a toss-up between Poison Ivy, Medusa, and a dead woman. I don’t have a digital picture of any of those, but I’ve got a picture of my costume as the Moon a few years back.
What I plan to dress up as this year: Not sure yet. And even if I knew, I never reveal my costumes before Halloween.

Name: Zach
Favorite album for fall/Halloween: Scary Sound Effects (because I remember ripping it).
Best Halloween costume ever: Rorschach because I have a mask with an ink blot that warps because of the temperature of your breathing vs. the cold air.
What I plan to dress up as this year: I’ll probably hand out candy.

What a ghoul…

Name: John
Favorite album for fall/Halloween: Litanies of Satan by Diamanda Galàs (Close second: Schrei X).
Best Halloween costume ever: A few years ago, my band Fambly Fun! performed a Halloween show as Will Smith. That’s right, we had FIVE Will Smiths. We played all the classics from Big Willie Style and Willennium, and even Willow Smith’s then-new “Whip My Hair.” It was a ton of fun.
What I plan to dress up as this year: I like to dress up as something timely, yet unexpected. Last year, I dressed up as the Russian feminist punk rock protest band Pussy Riot. This year, who knows!

Go Go Ranger!

Name: Steve
Favorite album for fall/Halloween: John Denver, classic fall Americana.
Best Halloween costume ever: I went as a Power Ranger when I was about 9. I had a glove that makes karate chop noises when you squeezed the thumb to the rest of the fingers. It was sooooo freaking cool.
What I plan to dress up as this year: The Man in the Yellow Hat. My girlfriend is going as Curious George.

Life is a cabaret!

Name: Noah
Favorite album for fall/Halloween: Halloween’s all about the movies, right? And what’s a better combination than Bernard Herrmann’s unforgettable scores to Alfred Hitchcock’s most terrifying movies.
Best Halloween costume ever: I went as Sally Bowles from Cabaret, but the makeup ended up looking a bit like Malcolm McDowell from A Clockwork Orange. It kind of worked anyway.
What I plan to dress up as this year: I’m thinking of going as a Mondrian painting, but I have a habit of changing my mind at the last minute.

Bah, humbug!

Name: Matt
Favorite album for fall/Halloween: Watermark by Enya (music for relaxing until Halloween is over).
Best Halloween costume ever: I’ll be the party pooper in the group and go on the record that I’ve never really enjoyed dressing up for Halloween—not as a kid, and certainly not as an adult. I find it a bit disturbing that Halloween has become a bigger draw for adults than children. If Halloween need be celebrated at all, at least let the kids regain the run of things.
What I plan to dress up as this year: I’m not planning to dress up again this year, for obvious reasons.

Eeeeek!

Name: Marc
Favorite album for fall/Halloween: The Good, the Bad & the Queen. Meticulously somber, strolling music for when chill winds throw leaves past your feet.
Best Halloween costume ever: A few years over the past decade I’ve iterated a costume inspired by a recurrent nightmare I used to have. I once made a bellhop at the Concourse jump back as I crept along the street.
What I plan to dress up as this year: Probably no costume, since I probably won’t have the time to put into making one.

Name: Preston
Favorite album for fall/Halloween: October Project :)
Best Halloween costume ever: My best? That was Satan working to recruit a manager ready to to Sell Their Soul to get in “Below Ground Level!!” managing the exclusive franchise I had just negotiated to open a line of Starbucks cafes in The 9th Circle of Hell. My pitch was that it’s “…the only place in the universe where another Starbucks can possibly improve the neighborhood.” It was a play on a joke in this animation, but you might want to watch the whole set for context.
What I plan to dress up as this year: It’ll be a game day decision. One possibility is that I’ll dress in a suit with a giant American flag lapel clip holding a pacifier on a red, white, and blue ribbon, with “I <3 Ayn Rand” stenciled on an Elephant on a T-shirt underneath. I’ll blackmail people into giving me some of their candy by threatening to do something that would embarrass us both. If they foolishly give me candy, I’ll come back later, scream and cry loud enough to be heard that they have way too much candy, and whine that they won’t negotiate with me to meet me part way and give me some of the rest. Ideally, this will be a team costume and include someone who plays the world’s tiniest violin each time I don’t get what I want. If things go poorly for them, I might also just go as The Ghost of The Republican Party, or conversely if democrats cooperate in sacking the poor, I might be an old person looking for information on which cat food tastes best.

The fam!

Name: Jason
Favorite album for fall/Halloween: This year, Featuring: Dr. Gruesome and the Gruesome Gory Horror Show by Snow White’s Poison Bite.
Best Halloween costume ever: Probably Zeus.
What I plan to dress up as this year: Was going to be Magneto, but didn’t have enough time to assemble the required high-voltage power supply…

Ooo là là!

Name: Leah
Favorite album for fall/Halloween: Something about Nick Drake is just perfect for an autumn stroll.
Best Halloween costume ever: A tie between Pam from the Office (I found Jim on State St!) and a Frenchman (fake cigarette, I promise). Oh and I went as an old woman when I was in second or third grade, which was hilarious.
What I plan to dress up as this year: A flower :D I found directions for an awesome DIY flower headpiece thing online, and my rest of the body will be the stem – a “Leahlac”, you might say.

Name: Tyler
Favorite album for fall/Halloween: For Emma, Forever Ago by Bon Iver. An album to listen to bundled up with your favorite blanket and a cup of hot chocolate.
Best Halloween costume ever: Don’t know what the name of the costume is, but I was dressed as a headless guy who was carrying his own head in his hands and the head was my head. Unfortunately, I couldn’t find a picture :(
What I plan to dress up as this year:
 I’ll be handing out candy this year, so no dressing up for me. But our two dogs will be dressed in Packer uniforms!

Barney!!!

Name: Kayla
Favorite album for fall/Halloween: Anything with The Monster Mash.
Best Halloween costume ever: Probably last year when I was a strawberry, since I made the costume by myself. The only thing is, everyone thought I was a watermelon—even though I had yellow seeds! =\ Some other notable costumes: Esmeralda, Avril Lavigne, and Zombie Tinkerbell.
What I plan to dress up as this year: Amy Winehouse (I bought a wig!). I’ll have fake tattoos, thick eyeliner, an empty bottle of Jack, and all that good stuff. My roommate and I are planning on having a séance for her on the 31st.

Big thank you to all the moms who had fun picking out pictures for this post! Have a fun and safe Halloween, everyone!

Workout Music: Burn Off All That Halloween Candy

Ah, the morning after Halloween. Our tummies are filled to capacity with all sorts of candies and sweets and chocolates. (Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups are my Kryptonite.) I mean, that’s kinda the point of Halloween, amirite?!

True, noshing on candy is fun for awhile. But then, then it starts to burn. You got a bellyache, and the only prescription is a good solid workout (not straightaway, of course). Once you feel up to it, try some light aerobics along with a healthy dose of music.

Here are a few suggestions for your playlist, curated by a few of my fellow Murfie staffers…

All Hallow’s E.P. – AFI (Will)

Jock Jams (John)

Clubland X-Treme Hardcore (Shawn)

Vulgar Display of Power – Pantera (Jason)

Lungs – Florence + the Machine (Leah)

Muppets from Space [Soundtrack] (Glynnis)

Jock Jams (Steve) (A second recommendation! Must be good ;)

Ten – Pearl Jam (Matt)

Halloween Picks: All-Time Favorite Movie Monsters

Editor’s Note: This is a guest post from John Kruse of Mine All Mine Records (and Murfie Ops).

Halloween is on its way, which means it’s a good time to celebrate our favorite movie monsters. We can’t pick just one, so we’ve put together a list of all our monster favorites, and the movie soundtracks they inspire.

Vampires

Just to prove that vampire love is nothing new, we’ve got two great Dracula-inspired soundtracks to show you: Bram Stoker’s Dracula (1992) and Wes Craven’s cult horror flick Dracula 2000Bram Stoker’s Dracula may be just another adaptation of the book (a very successful one, admittedly), but it also has a killer score by Wojciech Kilar. As an added bonus, it includes the Annie Lennox hit “Love Song for a Vampire.” If you’re more of a classic horror fan, though, you’ll definitely want to check out the Dracula 2000 soundtrack. It’s got everyone you’d expect: Disturbed, Slayer, System of a Down, Linkin Park, etc.

Werewolves

Okay, so the follow-up to the 1981 classic An American Werewolf in London didn’t quite live up to expectations. In fact, it bombed, but that doesn’t mean we can’t still love the idea! An American Werewolf in Paris came out in 1997, so what better way to celebrate our furry friends and relive the late 90s than by snagging this soundtrack? It features tunes from the likes of Bush, Cake, Skinny Puppy and more.

Vampires FIGHTING Werewolves

Instead of teaming up to take down humanity, vampires and werewolves have decided to duke it out in an eternal struggle for dominance. Lucky for us, their grudge means we get to sit back and watch—and Hollywood has certainly provided! Whether you like the dark and gritty tone of Underworld, or you love the love triangle of Twilight, we’ve got you covered. While Underworld‘s soundtrack features a mix of artists that reflect the darker tone of the movie, Twilight is a different story. The series has gained a reputation for producing great soundtracks that stand alone, covering a wide range of pop and indie artists, from Paramore to Iron & Wine.

Zombies

Love it or hate it, the living dead are here to stay. They’re everywhere, from the ultra-serious contagion film 28 Days Later to the trademark quirk of Tim Burton’s Beetlejuice. Who can resist the compositional skill of 28 Days Later‘s John Murphy or Beetlejuice‘s Danny Elfman? Not to mention that there’s word of a Beetlejuice 2 coming soon!

BONUS: (Boo!) Ghosts

What is there to say about Ghostbusters? You see a ghost, you’ve got to bust it. Just don’t cross streams! Grab an Ecto Cooler, put on your proton pack and blast some Bobby Brown and Run–D.M.C.

Staff Picks: The Dark Side

We’ve just experienced the passing of another All Hallows’ Eve. In solemn commemoration, I’ve asked a few Murfie staffers to share their go-to album for gloom and doom. Enjoy the BOOtiful music.

Fevers and Mirrors is classic Bright Eyes: good music for those who want to feel bad” – Andrew

Fevers and Mirrors not only puts you into a pensive state, but also drives you deep into the uncertainties of your own thoughts. It’s as dark as the abyssal plain” – Zach

Evil Urges by My Morning Jacket. A dark album name with searing tracks to match, Jim James and company remind listeners why rock and roll is anything but dead” – Daniel

“Although the spookiest time of year has already come and gone, it’s never too late to turn to the dark side! Like the classic Black Sabbath compilation We Sold Our Soul for Rock ‘n’ Roll. This album has pretty much every Sabbath song one could ever want, all in one convenient package.

Although Black Sabbath’s gothic edge was originally a gimmick to salvage their failing bluesy bar-rock act, the change resulted in a dark style and a gigantic sound that would inspire many bands to come. Guitarist Tony Iommi’s giant crunchy tone is a product of clever panning, wherein two takes are panned completely left and right (“Paranoid” and “War Pigs”). This technique creates a black wave of sound which is guaranteed to get any rocker grooving. Although I can talk guitars all day, let’s not forget our good friend Ozzy! Aside from having one of the most sinister voices in rock history, the Ozzman is known for being one of the most disgusting performers of all time. Besting Alice Cooper’s rumored biting the head off a chicken, Ozzy ate the head off a bat. Gimmicks aside, the man (and the band) mean business – so be sure to check out this album, an essential for any classic rock connoisseur.

Btw, if you’re interested in the Alice Cooper chicken incident, check out this video wherein Cooper describes the situation for himself” – Henry