It’s past Labor Day, which means it’s high time to start cranking some Halloween music. If you’re not into hearing “The Monster Mash” 150 times this Halloween season (4 or 5 is good with me), then you’ll need something with a little more kick. Something that’ll bring your whole body to a fervor. There’s no genre quite like heavy metal to do that. Luckily for us, Heavy metal and Halloween go hand in hand. They both love Satan (sometimes), they love to party (most of the time), and they’re both filled with occult imagery and just plain awesome.

We’ve gone through plenty of heavy metal here at THS, but it’s time to celebrate both Halloween and heavy metal. Without further ado, here are the 30 best Heavy Metal Halloween songs!

30. Hecate’s Nightmare – Children of Bodom

This is one of the newer tracks on the list, and it’s not exactly a Halloween song, but the subject matter is definitely spooky. Children of Bodom have plenty of tracks that you could pick from their discography that go into horror imagery. Sadly, we lost the leader of the band, Alexi Laiho in 2020. Celebrate his life and music with some Children of Bodom this Halloween season.

29. Dead Skin Mask – Slayer

You could pick a handful of Slayer songs to include on a list like this. But what separates this from the rest of the batch is the haunting vocals by Tom Araya. A song about Ed Gein, who would skin his victims and wear their skin, is truly terrifying. It helps that Slayer brings the thunder with this track and their first five albums in general. The voiceover at the end of the song is the cherry on the horrifying sundae.

28. Zombie Ritual – Death

Death is one of my favorite bands that I don’t think I’ve written about. The sheer technical excellence of the band combined with lyrics that were usually about death and destruction, but sometimes had a different side to them. “Zombie Ritual” was inspired by the film Zombie by Lucio Fulci. So you can’t really get any more Halloween inspired than that. Just crank this one.

27. Dr. Stein – Helloween

“Dr. Stein” doesn’t fit into the traditional sense of a heavy metal Halloween song. It’s not particularly frightening, but it has all the hallmarks of a good Halloween song. You get the story of Dr. Stein, who makes various creatures and clones his assistant. He clones himself and that proves to be the end of him, as the clone kills him. It’s a silly song that’s good to get in the Halloween mood.

26. Nightcrawler – Judas Priest

Another tough choice from the Priest. It was a long list of either: “Sinner”, “The Ripper”, “Dragonaut”, or “Painkiller”. At the end of the day, this song has all the elements of a Halloween classic. Speed, loud chugging guitars, and that middle section that will make your skin crawl. Rob Halford wrote this song in a way that it would make the listener think of all the imagery. A perfect song for the season.

25. Shout At The Devil – Motley Crue

The classic Motley Crue song, “Shout at the Devil” is what put them on the map. It’s probably their only song of this ilk, but it’s classic heavy metal at it’s best. And yes, Motley Crue is metal for all of you out there. Fight me. From the lyrics to the driving metal on display here, “Shout At The Devil” is perfect for any Halloween playlist.

24. Dragula – Rob Zombie

Rob Zombie is an enigma when it comes to horror movies and heavy metal. He does both! No matter what you think of his Halloween remake/sequel, “Dragula” absolutely kicks ass. It’s got all you need for a great heavy metal song, with the added bonus of all the spookiness. Whether it makes you want to hop in the car and drive down the road at high speed or just light up some pumpkins, this one is great.

23. Headless Cross – Black Sabbath

Here’s your curveball. Normally you could just include every Ozzy Black Sabbath song and call this list a day. But no! I’m not that lazy. We went deep into the catalog of Black Sabbath and pulled out what I might consider being one of the most underrated albums in heavy metal history. Sung by Tony Martin, “Headless Cross” oozes spooky horror. You can read a bit more about Headless Cross from my (RIP) Daily Music Recs series.

22. The Number Of The Beast – Iron Maiden

“The Number of the Beast” plays like a horror movie. You have a big grand opening that sets up what it’s all about, a frame if you will, and then the riff kicks in. After that, you have one of the most legendary screams in the history of heavy metal from Bruce Dickinson. The subject matter of the song scared the living daylights out of the PMRC, and every fundamentalist parent in the 1980’s, giving Iron Maiden some notoriety that helped the album sell millions of copies. If not for some other songs from Maiden, this would be higher on the list.

21. Night of the Unborn – Mercyful Fate

Take a look at that album cover. Tell me that isn’t Halloween/horror encapsulated in one image. The phrase “Don’t Break The Oath” is etched on the cover of Mercyful Fate’s best album with yellows and reds not usually seen in heavy metal. This won’t be the last time King Diamond or Mercyful Fate make this list, but this is a great place to start. You could easily populate this list with tracks from the King and friends.

20. Fight ‘Em Til You Can’t – Anthrax

Now, what’s better than combining Anthrax with zombies? Nothing. This was the first new taste of Anthrax you had back in 2011. They hadn’t released an album in eight years, and they dropped this track as a free download. It’s safe to say I was thrashing in my room to this one long after that download. Combining the lyrics about zombies, with that haunting pre-taped intro, you get a fantastic horror-themed song. In addition to all that, you have one of the best solos that Anthrax has ever recorded on this track.

19. Bring Your Daughter… To The Slaughter – Bruce Dickinson

No, it’s not the Iron Maiden version. It’s the much spookier, atmospheric, and quite frankly, better version of this song. Steve Harris can usually do no wrong, but he stripped this version of all the creepy qualities. This song was made for the A Nightmare On Elm Street 5: The Dream Child soundtrack. It perfectly encapsulates what that era of horror was like. It’s big, it’s boisterous, and it’s on the goddamn nose. But I love it. Just like those films.

18. She-Wolf – Megadeth

Is it strictly about an actual werewolf woman? No. Does it still sound spooky enough to be on this list? Yes. “She-Wolf” might be about a horrible person who eats your feelings alive, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be similar to our love of Werewolves. There are some other good ones from Megadeth‘s discography like “The Conjuring”, “Devils Island”, “Bad Omen”, or “Set The World Afire”. But this one takes the cake with some classic horror imagery and a great riff.

17. Ritual – Ghost

Ghost is entering that territory of Mercyful Fate. Any track by them can be used for a list like this. “Ritual” just brings more to the table than most. Being about ritualistic sacrifice in a church only adds to the proceedings. Throw in that they sound like Scooby-Doo chase music sometimes, and you’ve got a recipe for Halloween fun.

16. Sleepless Nights – King Diamond

I already did my Top 10 King Diamond songs, but this one was too good to pass up. The falsetto, and wailing vocals of King Diamond add a hauntingly beautiful quality to his songs. It’s no different here. If you add together the entire story of the album Them, you get a hell of a Halloween story, but just taking “Sleepless Nights” on it’s own, you’ve got a horror movie of a song with ghosts, evil grandmas, and deals being made with the dead.

15. Dream Warriors – Dokken

This one was so good that I had to write an entire article on it. If you’d like to hear the full thoughts on this masterpiece of heavy metal and horror, check out that piece here. But this was made for the A Nightmare On Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors soundtrack. It’s incredibly awesome to hear a heavy metal song play over the credits to a horror movie.

14. Come To The Sabbath – Mercyful Fate

Honestly, if you just wanted to crank up Don’t Break the Oath by Mercyful Fate and play that all night long, you’d get a pretty good Halloween out of it. Mr. Diamond singing on the album sounds like banshees wailing enough here. This one closes out the album in the perfect way with tons of Halloween imagery and that killer guitar sound from the early metal band. Bow down to the gods!

13. He’s Back (The Man Behind The Mask) – Alice Cooper

This one probably should go higher on the list, but this is the thirteenth entry, so it’s perfect to put a song all about Friday the 13th. Alice Cooper could have filled up 5 of these lists with his songs. His whole image is based around the themes of Halloween. This song is no different. Written for the soundtrack for Friday The 13th Part VI: JASON LIVES in 1986. That movie might not be as successful but Alice Cooper tells a distinct story here with some great keyboards, a killer chorus, and a beat that’ll make you want to get up and move. It’s a surprisingly upbeat song about such spooky material. Some other Alice Cooper songs that could have made it: “Welcome To My Nightmare”, “I Love The Dead”, and “Ballad of Dwight Fry”. “WE’RE NOT WORTHY!!!!!”

12. A Touch Of Evil – Judas Priest

Now this song is just scary. Like “Nightcrawler” on Painkiller, “A Touch Of Evil” is truly entrancing with it’s horror. From the slow synth start all the way to the killer riff, this one picks up when Rob Halford belts out “I taste the fear”. Judas Priest outdid themselves with this track. It might have some sexual connotations, but this one about a deal with the devil is a great addition to any Halloween playlist.

11. Welcome Home – King Diamond

“Welcome Home” from Them, kicks off the album, and it should probably kick off your Halloween playlists. I mean, how much better can it get than King Diamond belting out “GRANDMAAAAAAAA”. It can’t, and you know it. This one is the right amount of actually scary and silly to be on any playlist you make.

10. Hellraiser – Ozzy Osbourne/Motorhead

This one is easy. Ozzy is the Prince of Darkness. Lemmy is God. Hellraiser is awesome. Do you need more? You even get a two-for-one special here. The Motorhead version has an insane video that shows Lemmy is god, and can beat Pinhead in a card game. So anytime you run into the Cenobites, pray to the almighty Lemmy and he’ll come to help you out. Don’t forget about the Prince of Darkness though, he might come in handy in a battle against any version of Pinhead.

9. Feed My Frankenstein – Alice Cooper

I think this list and the other Halloween Metal Music lists might have a theme… Alice Cooper has been in horror movies himself, he’s got plenty of sex-tinged songs about horror themes, and “Feed My Frankenstein” doesn’t stray away from that. It helps that it has Elvira’s voice on part of this track! Feed that Frankenstein and give this one a listen this Halloween season.

8. Bark At The Moon – Ozzy Osbourne

Leave it to the Ozz-Man to make a Halloween classic that’s both creepy and fun. With a catchy chorus, those classic laughs from Ozzy, and a killer guitar solo by Jake E. Lee, this one needs to be on every Halloween playlist until the end of time. Honestly, there could have been a bunch by Ozzy on this list as well.

7. Dance Macabre – Ghost

“Dance Macabre” is the one that fills up the most of the imaginary checklist I had in my head for this list. It’s the perfect song that could slow down your playlist a bit for some slow dancing perhaps. But in classic Ghost ways, the song digs into your ear and even throws a spooky-themed pun in the song. Watch the video for the full effect of the song. “Just wanna be, wanna bewitch you all night”.

6. Trick Or Treat – Fastway

Here’s a curveball for you that you might not have heard. Originally done for the soundtrack of Trick or Treat. An over-the-top film from the 80’s that wasn’t well received at the time but is now among the cult classics of the genre, it’s filled with heavy metal cameos like Ozzy and Gene Simmons. The soundtrack by Fastway kicks ass and this is the perfect amount of spooky themes and hard-rocking guitar to get you and your party going.

5. All Hallows Eve – Type O Negative

What is more haunting than the opening of this track? The bass echoing, Peter Steele‘s vocals coming in, you don’t get much scarier and spooky than “All Hallows Eve” by Type O Negative. It’s atmospheric, it’s creepy, and it has Peter Steele‘s patented vocals and screams. If you’re in need of something to set the mood this October, it doesn’t get much better than this one. The moody track has perfect Halloween vibes and works when cranked or when played lower in the background. You’ll be in the Halloween mood in no time.

4. Black Sabbath – Black Sabbath

A song that features the birth of heavy metal and what could be the greatest riff ever written by Tony Iommi. Ozzy Osbourne set the stage for every metal artist to come after with this one. It’s due to personal preference that it’s number four on this list though. Keep this one for one of the last songs in your Halloween playlist to end the night on the creepiest note. Your guests will be unnerved and inspired all at the same time.

3. Fear Of The Dark – Iron Maiden

Just listen to it. Do I need to explain any more about how “Fear of the Dark” is a Halloween Heavy Metal classic? Live or studio recording, it doesn’t matter, you can only get better than this with two songs coming up that have “Halloween” in the title. Without those, Iron Maiden would have one of the best spooky songs of all-time, and it’s already one of the best heavy metal tracks ever. You can also read more about Fear of the Dark in my Iron Maiden-A-Thon review of the album!

2. Halloween – Helloween

If you know my tastes in heavy metal music, you’ll know I love me some Helloween. The band on their sophomore album Keeper of the Seven Keys Part 1, unleashed this 13-minute epic on the world. A then-unknown 18-year-old name Michael Kiske showed the world what power metal was. This is the perfect song to send your guests home with because it uses the most of the spooky atmosphere. Starting with light, happy lyrics and imagery, it quickly descends to the depths of hell itself. A battle with Satan and some kick-ass musicianship from the rest of the band including several moments where you might break your neck headbanging set the song up for a crescendo like no other.

1. Halloween – King Diamond

King Diamond went solo outside of Mercyful Fate and somehow got even spookier and creepy. Everything down to the riffs, the lyrics absolutely belted by King Diamond, makes this one perfect for the evilest day of the year. Every day is Halloween when you listen to King Diamond. Crank this one and you won’t be disappointed.

So, did any of your favorites miss the list? What tracks did you want to see? Let us know in the comments!

For more on Horror, make sure to check out the full index for Fright-A-Thon!

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