MRC Selects: Favorite Spooky Albums!

Happy Halloween! Looking for some bone-chilling tunes to set the mood? The Music Review Committee is here to scare with our favorite spooky albums for the holiday. 

Caleb Davis: Chaos Is Me – Orchid

Chaos Is Me is one of the most sinister albums I’ve ever heard, it’s got vocals from the dark pits of hell paired with blasting guitars and drums. The skeleton on the album cover should let you know this album is not for the faint of heart. 

Eddy Andrade: Garlands – Cocteau Twins

I can’t think of a better spooky album than Garlands. The opening “Blood B**ch” sets the gothic tone for the rest of the album. Some of my favorite spooky songs from this album include “Garlands” and “Wax ad Wane”.

Joseph Diehl: Girl with Basket of Fruit – Xiu Xiu 

When I think of scary music Xiu Xiu is one of the bands that immediately come to mind, I would say that Girl With a Basket of Fruit is their most in-your-face and abrasive album. The lyrics on this one combined with absolutely harsh instrumentals leave you feeling empty afterwards. 

Kenny Tschida: Dead Man’s Bones – Dead Man’s Bones

Ryan Gosling and his ragtag indie band conquer fall spookiness with the addition of a children’s choir. Each song is filled with both creativity and amazing writing, effectively building a great alternative Halloween album. 

Logan Schaedel: Blackstar – David Bowie

There is something eerily haunting about knowing you are dying and deciding to make an album about it. David Bowie even writes from the perspective of already being dead with instrumentals that really do sound like what it is like to be dying of cancer. Unsettling and scary. 

Ari Kautz and Isaac Whittemore: Horseshit on Route 66 – The Garden

Between Haunted House on Zillow and their iconic clown makeup on the album cover, the Shears Twins 6th album further their spooky reputation. From samples of eerie laughter to lyrics about ghosts, hearses, and something creeping up the stairs, Horseshit on Route 66 makes for the perfect October album. 

Soliana Guinto: The Moon and The Melodies – Cocteau Twins

This was the first album I thought of as a “spooky” album. Starting off with the hit “Sea, Swallow Me,” the band sets a daunting and airy tone, with floating, warm synths and lofty vocals of Elizabeth Fraiser like no other. Fraiser’s in-audibleness adds to the spook, what the hell might she be saying? Who knows. But frankly, “spooky” is not the adjective to describe this album, haunting is. 

Will Nave: It’s The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown – Vince Guaraldi

When you think about Halloween, what is one of the first pieces of media that invades your mind? The answer is Charlie Brown and the amazing album of The Great Pumpkin. Haters will say “Oh Will it’s literally 5 songs just with each four different versions” but I say no. Each reprise brings different spooks and thrills to your Halloweening mind. This album is the best, screw the haters.

Dakota Rossi: The Marble Index – Nico

Dark ambiance, medieval melodies, and haunting vocals define Nico’s post-debut production. Cale’s production and instrumentation are a perfect match to Nico’s unique style, making for a dark and spooky record that hooks you in and does not let go. The album is short and stays super consistent, a must-listen for experimental folk fans.

Sam Potter: Trust In The Lifeforce Of The Deep Mystery – The Comet Is Coming

This album sounds like what joining a cult feels like. The Comet Is Coming beckons the end of the world, and you can’t help but be entranced as the saxophone and synths tear your soul in two. Pay close attention to Blood Of The Past’s spoken word segment, which is permanently etched into my head four years after the album’s release. The majority of the album is tinged with unease, but when it decides to show you fear, you’ll know.

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