alloween is here again, and that can only mean one thing – it’s time to listen to some music guaranteed to terrify the living daylights out of you. Well, that and it’s time to dress up in a dumb costume and go get trollied. So, I guess it can only mean two things. In any case, you’re going to need a spooky soundtrack, so here’s Exeposé’s official Top 5 Halloween albums!
BOARDS OF CANADA – GEOGADDI
This is probably the most subtle of the albums on here when it comes to the uncanny elements. That’s not saying much, given that Geogaddi lasts exactly 66 minutes and 6 seconds. Yeah. Nevertheless, there’s a lot of density to the creepy stuff going on during Geogaddi, including the borderline legendary cliché: reversed messages about Satan! This is one of the few times where there’s actually some sinister stuff going on in the background; ‘You Could Feel The Sky’ has a reversed sample of a man talking about worshipping the devil, some screams and the crackling of a fire. Makes Led Zeppelin look like amateurs.
THREE 6 MAFIA – MYSTIC STYLEZ
You know those clattering hi-hats you hear in the background of nearly every pop-rap song lately? You know the ones. They originally grew out of trap music, and that element of Southern hip hop needed to come from somewhere – so, Mystic Stylez. It’s crazy hearing those same drums on an album recorded a full 21 years ago, and it makes the album feel incredibly fresh while you listen to Juicy J and Gangsta Boo rap about stabbing cops and worshipping Satan. It’s shocking, ludicrous, and a whole lot of fun.
GODSPEED YOU! BLACK EMPEROR – F#A# INFINITY
“The car’s on fire, and there’s no driver at the wheel. And the sewers are all muddied with a thousand lonely suicides. And a dark wind blows.” This is the beginning of the exceptionally jaunty monologue which opens F# A# Infinity by Canadian post-rock collective Godspeed You! Black Emperor. It’s one of only two or three times on the album where you can hear speech – it’s like the world that Godspeed have created is so awful that language has ceased to be relevant. Instead, heavily treated guitar, violin – even recordings of rambling strangers fuzzed up to the point of incoherence – paint a portrait of a world gone irrevocably wrong. If you choose to listen to this album by yourself late at night, it will reach into the darkest recesses of your brain and grip onto you with a leathery hand which just won’t let go.
DEATH GRIPS – THE MONEY STORE
If the last album on the list was a quiet if unsettling look at the end of the world, it feels appropriate to have a messy, half-punk half-rap record up next. The Money Store seems to draw on an almost infinite amount of raging energy, which ends up being translated into thirteen frenetic and deafening tracks. Tracks include “I’ve Seen Footage”, a paranoid ode to having seen some “crazy s***” and “Double Helix”, which manages to both be the closest thing the album has to a laid-back ballad and include lines like “Off the cliff in a blur of black blood and hoodoo hexin’ guts”. This album is an orgy of blood-drenched bass, savage drums and ferocious energy from frontman Ride. Try and be as prepared as you can before going in, but be aware – you won’t ever really be ready for it.
CHELSEA WOLFE – PAIN IS BEAUTY
Please don’t just write Chelsea Wolfe off as being the woman who had her song in the Game of Thrones advert. This album is doom-laden, depressing folk, but it’s still somehow able to be immediately accessible and as catchy as it gets. Her floating voice is endlessly listenable, even when she’s telling the listener to kill themselves (“House of Metal”) or discussing how her urge to kill is getting stronger (“Ancestors, the Ancients”). Her work essentially sounds like Grimes trying to make a black metal album. Take that how you will.