Favorite Horror Themes

Discussion in 'General' started by SaxCatz, Apr 11, 2010.

  1. SaxCatz

    SaxCatz New Member

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    I don't believe that this has been discussed recently, so I thought I'd create a thread to throw my two-cents worth in and invite everyone to share their favorites.
    Note that these are my top 10 favorite themes. This does not mean soundtracks in general. If the entire soundtrack were taken into account, this list would look quite different.
    So, without further ado, my top 10 favorite horror themes are:
    10. Tenebre (Main Title) - Goblin "Tenbre";
    9. Friday the 13th Part 2 (Main Theme)- Harry Manfredini "Friday the 13th Part 2"-
    (Just as I find the sequel superior to the original, I also prefer its theme somewhat);
    8. Zombi 2 (Main Title)- Fabio Frizzi "Zombi 2";
    7. Valley- Bill Wyman "Phenomena"-
    (I know that this is not the main theme of the film, but it is the first theme that we hear and, for me, it is far more powerful than the stil-excellent main theme);
    6. A Nightmare on Elm Street (Main Title)- Charles Bernstein "A Nightmare on Elm Street";
    5. Phantasm (Theme)- Fred Myro "Phantasm";
    4. Suspiria- Goblin "Suspiria"
    3. Halloween Theme- John Carpenter "Halloween"
    2. Profondo Rosso - Goblin "Deep Red";
    And lastly, in my opinion, an true masterpiece...
    1. Voci Dal Nulla - Fabio Frizzi "The Beyond".
     
  2. dave13

    dave13 Well-Known Member

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    i love the deep red stuff by goblin, as well as the vampire hunters theme from bram stokers dracula
     
  3. Erick H.

    Erick H. Well-Known Member

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    Tough to narrow this down but here are some of my favorites....

    PSYCHO (Maine Theme) by Bernard Herrmann.How can I not list it,one of the greatest scores by my favorite film composer.

    SISTERS (Title Theme)Bernard Herrmann again.Less well known that PSYCHO but a remarkably creepy score.The soundtrack is worth seeking out.

    THE OMEN (Main Theme),a great score,very influential,and amazingly the only score for which the great Jerry Goldsmith took home an Oscar.

    JAWS.It seems so simple but it's so unforgettable.John Williams,of course.

    HALLOWEEN,perhaps the best known of John Carpenter's collaborations with Allan Howarth.Another one that seems so simple yet you never forget it.

    PROFONDO ROSSO (DEEP RED).For whatever reason,when I think of Argento this is the music that pops into my head.Goblin in top form.

    THE FOG-My pick for John Carpenter's most underrated score.The main theme is saved until the end.

    ''Tubular Bells" by Mike Oldfield.Not really composed for the film THE EXORCIST but it's impossible not to couple them together.So associated with ''scary'' that it played on the music track at my grocery store for three days leading up to Halloween.Fresh produce has never been so creepy.

    THE DEVIL RIDES OUT.One of my favorite film composers was the sadly overlooked ''house composer" for Hammer Films,James Bernard,and this score is one of his best.I was reminded of this films credit sequence when I saw DRAG ME TO HELL come on last year.

    CREEPSHOW.Another score that really puts me in the mood for Halloween,multitalented John Harrison at his best.

    I could go on forever but I'll wrap up with a two fer from Ronald Stein.He goes way back and spent a lot of his film career on cheapies but he did some great scores and two of his most memorable are for Roger Corman's faux Poe adaptation (by way of H.P. Lovecraft) THE HAUNTED PALACE and the public domain classic DEMENTIA 13,a forefather to the modern slasher film.Figured I'd give a shout out to an oft forgotten composer.
     
    Last edited: Apr 11, 2010
  4. Iron Jaiden

    Iron Jaiden New Member

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    How could nobody mention Ennio Morricone's phenomenal score for John Carpenter's The Thing?!?

    Ok, I mentioned it now :)
     
  5. rhett

    rhett Administrator

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    I am sort of love it and hate it with Goblin's music on DEEP RED. There are some riffs that are just amazing, but there is a lot of time where they are getting all crazy on the organ that I could certainly leave behind. I liked their later work when they fully came into their own, embodying an almost entirely synthetic sound. I still get psyched up whenever I listen to the Tenebre theme.

    I really like all the themes listed here, but here are a few I think are underrated and worthy of mention as well:

    Village of the Damned (Remake) - Carpenter really shot out a menacing, ominous title track

    The Burning - Both the opening and closing themes by Rick Wakeman use the synthesizer in such a way to give it this kind of fluttery, organic sound scape that makes it sound as if the tragedy is literally just reverberating off the lake.

    Prom Night - Paul Zaza's disco theme is pretty lovable. "Let's show them what we can do!"

    Madman - How can you not sing along with Stephen Horelick's cautionary ballad about the legend of Madman Marz? The legend lives!

    The Shining - It's pretty tough to divorce that classical organ from the opening aerial shots of the Overlook. Ominous and epic.

    Sleepaway Camp - The cold synth beat is a big ingredient in what makes the final reveal so unsettling. It's tough not to think dick when you hear those lyrics "When I look...into your eyes..."

    Cat in the Brain - Fabio Frizzi delivers another classic, this one a total change of pace for both the composer and the film. It's this nice little travelogue kind of tune, and just works so well for the film's final pulling of the rug.

    Don't Go in the Woods - You probably will be thrilled!

    More to come, that's just a few off the top of my head.
     
  6. dave13

    dave13 Well-Known Member

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    well rhett, if you're going to mention don't go in the woods, you have to include the theme song for The Forest!
     
  7. philxus

    philxus New Member

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    Candyman Theme:evil:
     
  8. rhett

    rhett Administrator

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    "Are you crazy!?"

    "OF COURSE I AM!"
     
  9. Body Boy

    Body Boy Well-Known Member

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    Themes from...

    Candyman
    Sleepaway Camp
    Friday the 13th (1-5)
    The Burning
    Zombi 2
    The Beyond
    Phenomena
    Tenbre
    Deep Red
    Inferno
    Twitch of the Death Nerve
    Lisa and the Devil
    Prom Night
    Nightmare at Shadow Woods (synth-tastic!)
    Halloween II '81
    Dressed to Kill

    ...and more....to think of...
     
  10. chancetx

    chancetx Well-Known Member

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    Lots of great ones mentioned already. I'm a big fan of Pino Donaggio's orchestral scores - "Carrie," "Tourist Trap," "Blow Out," "The Fan," "Raising Cain." A shame so many are out of print or entirely unavailable.
     
  11. Erick H.

    Erick H. Well-Known Member

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    I love his work too,other great tracks include BODY DOUBLE,DON'T LOOK NOW,PIRANHA and THE HOWLING.There's some synth to some of these but some great orchestrations.
     
  12. Mr. Cole

    Mr. Cole Member

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    I'll add la chiesa / the church (emerson, glass, goblin). Matches visuals and camerawork to create perfect atmosphere.
     
  13. Clayton

    Clayton New Member

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    Thank you! Philip Glass doing a horror theme - how can that not be amazing!
     
  14. SaxCatz

    SaxCatz New Member

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    I'm surprised to hear several people mention Sleepaway Camp...
    I've seen that film quite a few times but can't remember the theme for the life of me.
    I've got the Survival Kit box set in my collection, so maybe I'll have to check it out...
     
  15. wago70

    wago70 Surviving on nostalgia

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    ZOMBIE - 1979 opening and end titles
    CITY OF THE LIVING DEAD/GATES OF HELL - the dead rising in Father Thomas' tomb
    BARON BLOOD - opening titles
    FRIDAY THE 13TH PART 2 - opening titles, love those manic, screeching violins.
    HALLOWEEN III - opening and end titles.
    PROM NIGHT - just before ax strikes Lou. Same theme used later in "Curtains".
     
  16. snowbeast323

    snowbeast323 New Member

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    The Amityille Horror: Lalo Schiffrin
    Tenebre: Goblin
    Halloween: John Carpenter
    The Fog: John Carpenter
    Exorcist II: The Heretic: Ennio Morricone (Regan's Theme)
    The Burning Theme: Rick Wakeman
    Cannibal Halocaust: Riz Ortolani
    Last House On The Left: David Hess
    A Nightmare On Elm Street 4: Tuesday Knight
    A Nightmare On Elm Street 5: Jay Ferguson (Don't Drink and Drive)
    Wes Craven's New Nightmare: J. Peter Robinson
     
  17. Erick H.

    Erick H. Well-Known Member

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    Good call ,very effective score ! I have heard that this music was very much like the score Schiffrin wrote for THE EXORCIST (but which wasn't used).William Friedkin rejected it (rather rudely,by tossing the master tape across a parking lot ).I'm not sure if any of that story is a myth but it has turned up in a lot of articles and documentaries.
     

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