Saturday, October 31, 2009

Playlist: Halloween, part 2

[Playlist is an attempt to distill my favorite artists to 80-minute compilations. If someone asked me to burn them a mix of the bands featured here, I would give them this collection. This week, Picasso Blue will be running Halloween-centric playlists. Here's the final Halloween playlist, courtesy of contributing writer Michelle Byrne.]

Up until a few years ago, All Hallow’s Eve was my favorite holiday. As a child, I dressed up in costumes mostly created by my father. As a teen and (young) adult, I have designed my own costumes. About four years ago, after a divorce, a friendship gone awry, and a general crumbling of my (young) adult life, Halloween sucked. I spent way too much money on a Corpse Bride costume one year, not because I hated the movie like everyone else who mocked my costume, but due to the fact that I got home too late from work to give out candy to the spoiled rich brats in my neighborhood (who end their trick-or-treat festivities at 6:30 p.m.) and no one was in the mood to trick-or-treat. I had a quarter-life crisis, and I stood in the street, alone, looking like an ass, and realized that I was too old for trick-or-treating.

Last year, I tried to change my attitude, but again I felt out of place. I created my own (AWESOME!) Miss Piggy costume to stand around at a party that everyone my age (or younger) was clearly having so much fun at and feel awkward. I don’t much like crowds, loud noises, and being around drunk people. I knew I should be having fun, but I was just exhausted from work and ill at ease being social. Again, I am too old to trick-or-treat. And maybe I’m too old for parties (/fun?). I am at that weird in-between stage where I am not a kid but I’m not a mom.

Thus, the only solution was to become a mom. Okay, a fake mom, because I’m not ready for that yet either. Also, it’s still alright to act like a kid sometimes.

This year, I am taking back Halloween. Like my childhood, I asked my dad to design my costume. I am being the child-appropriate Eve, from Wall-E. But, I pretended to be a mom as I decorated the house more than we have in years. And all my family joined in on the decorating, which made me feel like a kid again. Like a mom, I decided to stay home and give out candy to the little kids so I can “ooh” and “ahh” over their adorable costumes. So, I have the costume, the decorations, the age-appropriate role (as candy giver)... then, I realized that I was missing something. We used to have this tape that we set up in our boom box to play Halloween music and creepy sounds. I almost went out to buy another one of these tapes, or CDs (since it is the 2000s now) until I realized that it would be a lot more fun to make my own mix.

Halloween Playlist

1. Tracy Jordan – “Werewolf Bar Mitzvah,” 30 Rock [This song is from my current favorite TV show. It never gets old even though the whole premise is “sweaty.” And the kids probably won’t get it.]

2. Shivaree – “Goodnight Moon,” I Oughtta Give You a Shot in the Head for Making Me Live in This Dump [I love Ambrosia Parsley’s spooky voice, and Quentin Tarantino even uses “Goodnight Moon” in Kill Bill: Volume 2 because its so scary.]

3. Cat Power – “Cross Bones Style,” Moon Pix

4. Mazzy Star – “Ghost Highway,” She Hangs Brightly [It has the word “Ghost” in the title.]

5. The Detroit Cobras – “Midnight Blues,” Mink, Rat or Cobra [Detroit Cobras songs use the surf rock sound common in most Halloween songs.]

6. The Bird And The Bee – “Witch,” Ray Guns are Not Just the Future [This song is the word “Witch.”]

7. Say Hi To Your Mom – “Sad, But Endearingly So,” Impeccable Blahs [This song is about vampires! This whole album is, which makes it completely awesome.]

8. Bloc Party – “Hunting For Witches,” A Weekend in the City [Witch[es]!!!!]

9. Metric – “Monster Hospital,” Live It Out

10. Elliot Goldenthal – “A Batman Overture,” Batman and Robin [One must have Batman.]

11. The Kills – “Black Balloon,” Midnight Boom

12. PJ Harvey – “The Devil,” White Chalk

13. Band Of Horses – “Is There A Ghost,” Cease to Begin [This song has the word “Ghost” in it.]

14. Eels – “My Beloved Monster,” Beautiful Freak [Monster.]

15. Smashing Pumpkins – “We Only Come Out At Night,” Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness [This song is about bats.]

16. The Cranberries – “Zombie,” No Need to Argue [“Zo-om-bie!”]

17. Prevail – “Michael Jackson Sounds Better On Vinyl,” Pandamonium [The thunderstorm at the beginning sounds spooky. But, according to small children who are related to me, Scott Muir (vocalist) sounds like a “Grizzly Bear”, which is really scary.]

18. Karen O & Squeak E. Clean - “Hello Tommorrow” [This is a perfect end to every mix, particularly one about Halloween, because Karen O sings, “The light are golden, off,” signifying the end or your death.]

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