Coffin Hop 2012: Melodies of Maddness


Today I wanted to focus on what my favorite horror themed songs are.  I love music and my tastes run to the hard and heaviest of metals.  The tunes I listen to help me go to those deep , dark recesses in my mind when I need to write the down and dirty stuff.  No bunnies, rainbows, and bubble gum here kiddos.  I had tons of problems paring it down to ten and I almost went with twenty.

10.  AbigailKing Diamond:  I usually am not a big King Diamond fan, but the lyrics and vocals to this song sends shivers down my spine even in the summer.  It is dark and haunting.  Great song to irritate the neighbors with if you break your windows in the process.

9.  Dance of DeathIron Maiden:  All time favorite band and this song about rituals with the dead can “chill the bones”.

8.  House of 1000 CorpsesRob Zombie:  The title song from his directorial debut is a knockout, drag-out violent throw down.  The opening is jarring due to the music being off-key and the verses introducing you to the Firefly family are great pieces of horror fiction.

7.  Roses on White LaceAlice Cooper:  From the Raise Your Fist and Yell album, this song is part of a story told within the final tracks about a killer.  The start of the chorus says it all, “In my eyes blood drops look like roses on white lace”.

6.  NightcrawlerJudas Priest:  The creature is approaching the village while a storm rages in this Priest song from the Painkiller disc.  The song tells the tale of the people who try to hide and escape the beast when it enters the town to, “feast on flesh and blood”.

5.  Alone in the DarkTestament:  One of the under-rated metal bands to come out of the ’80’s (along with Overkill) featured this song about evil and spirits on their debut album The Legacy.

4.  Dead Skin MaskSlayer:  A story about murder and perversion in this nice song from Slayer’s Seasons in the Abyss album.  The child’s voice in the beginning and the scream in the end messes with your mind.  Listen close to the final cry and how the pitch changes from hurt to unholy anger.  Great song to blare driving down the street.

3.  On a Wicked NightDanzig: Not scary or bloody, just a good song about love and evil women.

2.  Black No. 1Type O Negative:  Love this ode to goth chicks and the whole bad is hot vibe.  This is the one song I’ll find myself constantly humming while I’m writing.  I’ve also been known to grab my bass next to my desk and play the bass line from it to help me get my focus back to the story at hand.

1.  Fear of the DarkIron Maiden:  The top spot is the haunting tribute to the horror genre and things that go bump in the night from the Maiden guys.  Did I mention they are my favorite band?  The opening riff is amazing and the way Bruce Dickinson belts out the opening lines are superb.  A great song to listen to any time.

The bands above are also mainly what I listen to when pounding out tales of death and destruction.  I also throw in some Megadeth, High on Fire, Anthrax, Metallica, Amon Amarth, All That Remains, and other heavy bands.

So, what are your fav horror songs or bands you write with in the background?   Drop a comment below and discuss the horror side of music.



14 thoughts on “Coffin Hop 2012: Melodies of Maddness

  1. Kim Koning @AuthorKimKoning

    I am a classic music nut…The classics have very spooky melodies and sometimes horror-iffic harmonies. So classical music is always the soundtrack to my writing. Particularly violin music.
    I also love Apocalyptica, Dark Sanctuary, Nox Arcana, Sirenia and Delerium.

    – Kim
    coffinhopping from Wrestling the Muse

  2. Hey, Brent! What a cool post: horror and hard rock! I’m not going to lie to you and claim to know all of these cuts. I am a big Priest and Maiden fan, so I am familiar with them. Saw them both seperately in concert back in the day. I’ll have to check out the rest. thanks for sharing.


  3. I don’t generally listen to music while writing–at least not songs. Instrumentals are a different story. However, my favorite horror type songs are:

    Welcome to My Nightmare by Alice Cooper (Really the whole Welcome to My Nightmare album)
    Fear of the Dark by Iron Maiden
    Voices by Disturbed
    Chop Suey by System of a Down (some folks will debate on whether it is horror or not, but the images that pop into my mind while listening to it are purely horrific)
    Sweet Dreams by Marilyn Manson

    1. I love the Manson cover of ‘Sweet Dreams’ and ‘Welcome to my Nightmare’ is great, but the song series of ‘Chop, Chop, Chop’/ ‘Gail’/ and ‘Roses on White Lace’ is a cool creepy ending to “Raise Your Fist and Yell”. Disturbed is another band I dig too.

  4. Jason Darrick

    Love the list! Zombie has been one of my idols almost forever, though I can’t listen to him while writing because I will put the ‘puter down and pick up my guitar.

    Dead Skin Mask has to be one of the most haunting riffs anywhere, while Black No. 1 makes me wanna grab my lady (okay, a lady since I’m single) and do bad things with her. I’d also recommend the first three Six Feet Under albums. Cannibal Corpse meets Obituary head on.

  5. Great List… I think that music is a huge factor for most horror writers. When I find a song or group that gets me to that dark place I usually tend to keep hidden, I embrace it and add it to the list of writing songs. Thanks for sharing your list.

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