Murderously musical horror fans shout out the genre’s best needle drops

Lupita Nyong'o and Winston Duke as Adelaide and Gabe Wilson, Us (2019)

Image via Universal Pictures

When it comes to loving horror, you may not think that the genre’s music choices are the first thing to come to mind for most. Still, then again, with the likes of Jaws and Halloween managing to encapsulate terror with just a few iconic notes, perhaps it’s more prevalent than it first appears.

With a treasure trove of great soundtracks composed over the years, r/horror has called upon its best sets of ears to shout out the best in the genre.

We all remember back when Jordan Peele was in the middle of promoting his sophomore thriller Us, the trailer for which opened with the bouncy, catchy “I Got 5 On It” by Luniz. What we remember even more is the twisted “Tethered” mix of the track that transformed it into one of the most unsettling and replayable tracks to ever come out of the modern horror landscape.

Another user gave the nod to the 1993 Best Picture winner The Silence of the Lambs and one of its most terrifying scenes (which is saying quite a bit given the film’s content), which happened to utilize the late Q Lazzarus’ “Goodbye Horses” in a way that completely subverted the ethos of the song by its mere association with the scene. It was also the only song the artist ever released over the course of her life before her death earlier this year.

Going back to the Halloween franchise, John Carpenter’s original score may take the uncontested top spot, but Halloween II seemed to capture the eardrums of many after its use of “Mr. Sandman” by The Chordettes, which played at the beginning and end of the film. An odd marriage at a glance, but perhaps just odd enough to work perfectly.

Whether the song serves the film or the film serves the song, there’s nothing better than one medium lifting the other up, and horror has proven to be delightful proof of that.

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