By Ed Sum (The Vintage Tempest)
Halloween is almost here, and the only thing some readers fear is the same ol’ songs making these lists all the time. I’m offering an eclectic mix of tunes from various decades to get into the spirit. These are songs to be potentially enjoyed by all, and they are diverse enough to celebrate what the season is about. Disclaimer: perhaps one or two are of a 14+ design so please carefully click on what I describe is of “adult” nature.
Despite what my comrade in arms claims, I think his tastes are ancient. His choice is a perfect look into the past, but how far can I drag a pun? His selection is indeed a treasure chest of buried treasures, but can today’s generation truly appreciate them? I can hear a few folks say, “Those old-time tunes are dead; today’s kids crave pop.”
I pay attention to today’s modern music even though they are not all high on my hit list. One tune that did not make it on the list but deserves honourable mention is “Zydrate Anatomy” from Repo! the Genetic Opera (2008). I love this song because it’s edgy and treats the subject of drug addiction like Aerosmith’s song, “Janie’s Got A Gun” but only in a post-apocalyptic horror/sci-fi setting. Unlike a certain coffin character, I enjoy the progressive sound found in today’s compositions while still dosing in the tunes I grew up to.
“Grim Grinning Ghosts”
Buddy Baker and Xavier Atencio
The reason this tune works is that it plays with a well-known musical motif to underscore the creep factor. Known as the Devil’s Interval, the tritone, the resonance and emotional impact it imparts upon the listener invokes certain feelings. Back during the Renaissance certain musical constructs was banned since it creates a dissonant tone. In that era, music was made to praise God much like how Mozart is said to be a favourite child of his. Some of his scores are bright and cheerful, and others … oh my, watch out! Listeners can hear this composer’s life play out when considering how amazing the movie, Amadeus is — even though I’m digressing.
Buddy Baker’s work simply works because pieces are used repeatedly to let its timbre crawl under your skin.