There is a vast catalogue of classic songs that probably appear in every Halloween playlist ever made, such as “Monster Mash” or Michael Jackson’s “Thriller.” When you listen to your spooky season playlist (here’s mine) all October long like me, however, these songs can grow stale regardless of how much fun they are. In order to curate the perfect mix of Halloween music, you have to think outside the box a little. Here are some of my suggestions for creepy songs that will add variety to your Halloween playlist!
Ashnikko – Halloweenie, Halloweenie II: Pumpkin Spice, Halloweenie III: Seven Days, and Halloweenie IV: Innards
Ashnikko loves Halloween so much that they wrote not one, not two, and not even three, but four songs about the holiday. Note that these songs should only go in your playlist if you plan on playing it at a party where all of the guests are 18+; these lyrics are NOT child-friendly! In fact, they may even make some adults uncomfortable…
Insane Clown Posse – Boogie Woogie Wu
I don’t think any other song has genuinely scared me like this. The storytelling is incredibly effective, with disturbingly graphic imagery set to an eerie (but catchy) melody that uses both a child’s screams and a clown’s maniacal laughter as music. Like the Ashnikko songs above, this song has an R rating, but it’s because the lyrics are explicitly violent rather than explicitly sexual.
P!NK – Funhouse
For many people, clowns are terrifying even if they are not part of an insane posse. A carnival funhouse is only “fun” if you don’t think clowns are creepy; plus, the disorienting doors and mirrors can make anyone want to burn the place to the ground!
Ghost – Dance Macabre
The commonly misheard lyrics “I just wanna bewitch you” (most people, myself included, hear “be with you”) make this apocalyptic love song all the more spooky. Besides, you have to have at least one song by a band called “Ghost” in a Halloween playlist, right?
Ice Nine Kills – The Shower Scene
This song is told from the point of view of Norman Bates from the 1960 horror classic Psycho. It even includes a piece of the film’s iconic bone-chilling, shrieking theme music!
Rob Zombie – Living Dead Girl
Speaking of Psycho, here’s a song from the official soundtrack for the 1998 remake. Pretty much anything by Rob Zombie is qualified for a Halloween playlist, seeing as he literally has “zombie” in his name, but this song talks about the undead (or at least a girl who acts like she’s undead) in the lyrics in addition to the artist’s surname. Plus, it sounds uncannily similar to “Zydrate Academy” from the gory horror musical Repo! The Genetic Opera.
Ghost Town – You’re So Creepy
Rob Zombie isn’t the only rocker who sings about his love for morbid women. Appearing on an album called “Party in the Graveyard” and beginning with a wolf’s howl, this electronic song will be a great addition to any Halloween bash.
SOLES – Love Will Have Its Sacrifices
In addition to having a chilling piano melody, this song is also the opening theme for Carmilla, a short series about a sapphic vampire.
Teya & Salena – Who The Hell is Edgar?
This catchy earworm, which represented Austria at the Eurovision Song Contest 2023, is technically a commentary on underpaid artists in the music industry, but the lyrics talk about being possessed by the ghost of Edgar Allan Poe.
Dark Divine – Halloweentown
Not to be confused with the Disney Channel Original Movie by the same name, this is the title track from the sophomore album of a group that call themselves a “spooky hard rock band” in their Instagram bio.
Kesha – Supernatural
Kesha takes a love for the paranormal to the next level by singing about an intimate encounter with a ghost. I guess Ashnikko isn’t the only artist who sees the sexiness of the supernatural!
Billie Eilish – bury a friend
The soft and threatening tone of this song is thoroughly chilling. Also, the chorus poses the unsettling question that is also the name of the album this song appears on: “When we all fall asleep, where do we go?”
VICTORIA – phantom pain
Incidentally, I think of VICTORIA as the Bulgarian Billie Eilish due to their incredibly similar sound, and I wish more people would listen to her music. What better place to start than with this breakup song that’s so haunting, it almost feels paranormal?
Panic! At The Disco – The Emperor’s New Clothes
While the music video shows band frontman Brendan Urie transforming into a demon after descending to Hell, the song itself is plenty creepy even without that visual. One of the band’s older songs, “Nearly Witches (Ever Since We Met…),” would also make a great addition to a Halloween mix.
The Pierces – Secret
The Pretty Little Liars theme song is about silencing someone with murder, set to an ominous rising and falling rhythm that is reminiscent of a music box or a carousel.
Rob Cantor – Shia LaBeouf Live
This song would be a harrowing tale of surviving the pursuit of a deranged serial killer… if that killer wasn’t Hollywood superstar Shia LaBeouf. But because LaBeouf is the antagonist of this story, the song is utterly ridiculous and I can’t even hear the first line without bursting into laughter.
Alex Swings Oscar Sings – Ding Dong The Witch Is Dead
Have you ever been in a relationship with someone so terrible that when you finally break up, you want to sing and dance like the Wizard of Oz munchkins when the Wicked Witch of the West died? Well, that’s what this jazzy tune is about.
Hayley Kiyoko – Demons
Sometimes our inner demons can be just as terrifying as the vicious creatures from movies and mythologies. And while this tidbit isn’t exactly related to Halloween, this fun but frightening song was featured in an episode of Disney+’s Loki!
Seven Devils by Florence + The Machine
Being possessed by one demon would be agonizing enough, but imagine having seven inhabiting your body and your home.
Halsey – Haunting
Ghosts aren’t the only thing that can haunt you. There are several songs about the memory of an ex following a former lover around like a spirit (such as “Ghost” by Fefe Dobson, a song of the same title by Ella Henderson, and “Ghost of You” by Selena Gomez), but this one in particular has an eerie feel to it that’s perfect for Halloween.
Raven Black – Dollhouse
As a theatrical metal band, the members of Raven Black play the roles of freaky characters. The lead singer/main character, Raven, is half human, half doll, and this song drags us into her deadly dollhouse. Annabelle might have some competition for the creepiest doll in town!
Blood On The Dancefloor – Bewitched
Even though this song isn’t inherently funny, it always makes me think of this Vine and I can’t help but laugh whenever I listen to it. Anyway, what is Halloween without a little witchcraft?
Christina Aguilera – Haunted Heart
This song was used in the opening sequence of the 2019 animated adaptation of The Addams Family. We hear it playing while Morticia uses her parents’ ashes as makeup on her way to her wedding, which I thought was just so iconic. In true Addams Family style, this song is romantic in a bit of a macabre way.