Sunday, October 25, 2009

Three Fun Halloween Albums

Once again, in honor of Halloween coming up (I'm probably going to run out of ideas before I get there), I wanted to look at three albums that are especially fun to listen to this time of year. These albums are not scary at all musically (two are from power metal bands, the other a light-hearted death metal band). Instead the lyrical themes are old school horror movie monsters. That's what makes them a lot of fun. I love horror movies almost as much as I love metal, so albums that combine the two are great in my book.

Denial Fiend is a band formed by Kam Lee, the original singer for Death (well they were actually known as Mantas at that time) and also formerly of Massacre. Denial Fiend is a death metal band but the band strives for more of a fun sound influenced equally by horrorpunk groups like The Misfits as they are by death metal. This album mostly deals with zombies, but also tackles The Creature from the Black Lagoon and Frankenstein as well.

The musicians from Mercyful Fate had to do something while King Diamond was busy with his self-named band, so they formed Force of Evil with a new singer. This band is more of a traditional metal band with some occasional power metal leanings but it is driven by the masterful guitar work of Hank Shermann and Michael Denner. The horror movie monster references are more recent than the Golden Age of Horror icons that Denial Fiend and Iced Earth touch on and include: Candyman ("Cabrini Green"), The Omen ("Days of Damien"), Friday the 13th ("Voorhees Revenge"), Texas Chainsaw Massacre ("Dead in Texas"), and In the Mouth of Madness ("Hobbs End"). It also features a song referencing many of Stephen King's works ("Disciples of the King").

Iced Earth is a well-known American power/thrash metal band that is strongly influenced by groups like Judas Priest and Iron Maiden. The band has been going strong for over 20 years at this point and sound as if they could continue for another ten years. This album, as mentioned above, deals more with Golden Age horror icons, with a couple of newer ones thrown in for good measure. Monsters with their own song include Dracula, Frankenstein's monster, the Creature from the Black Lagoon, Wolfman, the Mummy, Jekyll and Hyde, and the Phantom of the Opera. Jack the Ripper and Damien from The Omen also have songs.

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