Just in time for the Halloween season, music artist Sean Keller has released an incredible collection of songs brimming with a love of Horror called The Killer Sounds of Halloween. 18 tracks of pure, creepy nostalgic glory, all purportedly by “Various Artists,” but all of which ultimately are Sean Keller himself doing almost the entire work. There are guest vocalists and narrators, but this is truly the work of a single fiend.
And what a fiend he is! Keller has contributed music to numerous films, including Satanic Panic, Beyond the Gates, Tales of Halloween and many others, as well as creator of Slashed! The Musical. He takes all he’s done before and applies it with vim and vigor here.
What we have is a collection of songs celebrating the world of Horror. The album lurches from style to style, opening with a creeptastic intro track by Jesse Merlin and followed by a sequel to “The Monster Mash” in the terrific “The Monsters Trick or Treat.” It really does sound like a song that Bobby “Boris” Pickett recorded but was lost long ago. Lots of fun.
From there we go song to song, style to style, as Keller leads us on a tour of the world of Horror Rock, Punk, Goth, Folk, and others. Next up is the Rob Zombie pastiche “Hate Living, Love Dead” by the artist Zombistein. Hot on its heels is the loungey-groove of “My Halloween Queen.” Interspersed throughout the album are fake trailers like “Axe Night 4: The Lumberjack’s Back!” (by Choptober Films!) and fake TV ads like “Dr. Bloodwrench” on WNUF TV 28, all just to keep you on your toes and provide some transition between the different styles.
I love everything about this record, but personal highlights would be “The Terror at Blood Lake” by The Mary O’Neil Group, with its fake ballad about the slaughter at a summer camp, “The Old Dark Haus” by These Bloody Hands (an obvious ode to the Bauhaus), and the amazing “We Summon the Darkness” by faux-hair band Acid Castle. But really, there’s something here for everyone, and for everyone something to love.
What might have been a terrible disaster, choosing to reflect so many styles in one collection, turns out to be the strength of this little opus. Songs that might not otherwise fit together do so spectacularly here. You can groove to all types of sounds without every once getting bored of things getting repetitious. The changing of genres keeps everything fresh and, uh, killer.
If you want a cool record for your Halloween Party, look no further. If you want something to listen to by yourself, look no further. This is an album that can thrill you in the cold darkness when you’re all alone, or make you dance with fellow costume-clad friends in a frenzy of blood-drenched madness.
Sean Keller has done an outstanding job here and if you’re a fan of all things spooky and fun, you would do well to gobble this one up!
Four Buckets of Blood out of Four!
Kelly is the author of dozens of stories and dozens of reviews, he likes to write, he likes to read, he likes going to the movies, and he loves to laugh. He hails from the wilds of Kentucky and if you'd like to see more of his work, check out his website: www.kellymhudson.com