Monday, October 30, 2006

SCARY MIXMANIA

I got my Patriside scary mix in the mail the other day and decided to listen to it on my way to help my sister move from Alexandria to DC. I put the disc in when I was near “M” Street and Prospect and, of course, “Tubular Bells” was track one. Thanks, Jim.

Jamee and I went down to the Prospect Street steps in Georgetown a few years ago and they’re pretty damn scary. Even scarier looking than in The Exorcist. They don’t look like they’ve been kept in good repair since the 70s either and when we caught the movie on TV this past weekend, wondered why everyone seemed surprised that Burke Dennings’ head was twisted around when they found the body at the bottom of the steps. I’ve climbed to the top of them and looked down. Someone’s head getting twisted around is the first thing that I would expect to happen if they fell down them.

Which brings me to a nasty anecdote.

When Maddy was born we spent a lot of time in the NICU with her and somehow the conversation with one of the nurses got around to the Prospect Street stairs. She mentioned that the worst thing she ever was someone who had been drinking at the top and leaned back just a little too far. The impact with the first step drove his face halfway back into his head and then he tumbled the rest of the way down. Needless to say, he didn’t make it.

So, here’s my mix:

1. "Jack the Ripper" - Screaming Lord Sutch: Founder of the UK's Monster Raving Loony Party, which back in the 60s tried to make a whole bunch of radical ideas law, sutch as legalizing commercial radio and giving 18-year-olds the right to vote. Plus he sang a bunch of songs about monsters.

2. "Halloween on the Barbary Coast" - The Flaming Lips: Because there should be at least one song with “Halloween” in the title in here and it continues my obnoxious trend of putting on songs by bands I’ve seen in concert this year on my mixes. That’ll stop with the next one. Maybe.

3. "Roast Pork" - Vincent Price: Price did a series of cooking albums decades ago. There's no joke on this track, just instructions for how to cook roast pork.

4. "Creepy Doll" - Jonathan Coulton: Jamee and I saw something on the Discovery Channel a few years ago about a haunted doll named "Robert." Now, these sort of scary-docs usually don't do anything for me, really, but there's something about this one that still gives me the wiggins. I can't even say the name "Robert" around Jamee without her getting upset and I'd include a picture, but I don't want a picture of it on my computer. Go here for more about the damned thing. It'll give you the creeps.

5. "A Forest" - The Cure: My favorite version of this song is the live version on Concert, but I only have it on cassette, so here’s the album version, which is long and creepy. I like the single cover, which looks like a rip-off of the Blair Witch Project teaser poster, except it predates it by almost twenty years.

6. "A Night on Bald Mountain" - The Pogues: Classical creepiness, done honky-tonk-style for the Straight to Hell soundtrack.

7. "Babbachichuija" - Tom Waits: I wanted to put on a creepy Waits song, but I wanted to go with an obscure one. This one's not even on the Orphans set and it's either creepy or annoying depending on your mood. I think it sounds like something the family from The Texas Chain Saw Massacre would listen to while fixing dinner.

8. "Zombie Nutritionist Recommends All Brain Diet" - The Onion Radio News: Speaking of dinner, Jamee wanted a zombie-themed dining room. It's still a work in progress, but here's a gander:


- Begin Zombie Suite -

9. "The Gonk (Excerpt)" - H. Chappel: The best known of the instrumental bits from George Romero's Dawn of the Dead. One day I'll get around to making this my ringtone.

10. "I Walked With a Zombie" - R.E.M.: I heard this playing in the local record shop when I was in college and immediately bought the bootleg of R.E.M. rarities that it was on. I found out that it was from a Roky Erickson tribute album, whom I’d never heard of. The CD, which I’ve never been able to find, was meant to raise money for Erickson to help with legal and medical bills, and well…I’ll continue this with track 18.

11. "The Man Comes Around" - Johnny Cash: One of the best times I've ever had in a movie theater was when Jamee and I caught the Dawn of the Dead remake on opening night. It was a sold out, 500 seat theater, and the whole place went batshit during the pre-credit sequence. I'll never forget the guy two rows behind us shouting "DAMN!" when Sarah Polley's neighbor gets nailed by the ambulance. And when the Cash song kicks in ten minutes into the movie, the crowd went silent. It was beautiful.

12. "Down with the Sickness" - Richard Cheese: Another track used in Zack Snyder’s Dawn of the Dead.

13. "East Hastings" - Godspeed You Black Emperor: Maybe it was wrong of me to put a 18-minute piece in the middle of a bunch of 3-4 minutes songs, but this thing gives me the willies. It was first used in a great documentary about 1970s horror films called The American Nightmare and then later showed up during the London Walk sequence in 28 Days Later, which I know technically isn't a zombie movie, but pretty much is one anyway.

14. "RE: Your Brains" - Jonathan Coulton: Like “Creepy Doll,” a Thing-a-Week song. This one's brilliant and there's a great live version where the audience sings along to the zombie parts. There’s also a shirt with the lyrics done as a memo with blood splatters all over it.

15. "The Gonk (Remix)" - Kid Koala: From Shaun of the Dead, a nice bookend to the zombie songs.

-End Zombie Suite-

16. "Rob Zombie to Crash at Your Place for a Couple of Days" - The Onion Radio News: Just an excuse to have something introduce a Rob Zombie song.

17. "Superbeast" - Rob Zombie: Because you have to follow the Onion bit with a Rob Zombie song. There's a movie called Super Beast that aired on Joe Bob Briggs' show back when I was in college. He promised to buy a beer for anyone who could explain what's going on in the first ten minutes. I've watched it. And Mr. Briggs does not owe me a beer.

18. "I Think of Demons" - Roky Erickson: I just recently got some actual Roky Erickson stuff from eMusic. He’s usually lumped in with damaged outsider musicians like Syd Barrett and there’s a definite obsessive quality in his songs that you don’t get from well adjusted folks. But I’m happy to have just found out that the guy’s doing better now that he has for a while and is actually performing again.

19. "Subway Song" - The Cure: My original plan was to have the first third of the disc be rural, lost-in-the-woods type scary, the middle third be zombie songs, and the last third be urban scary. That didn't really work and this is the only city-scary song that made it. It's a good one, though and‘ll make you jump if you‘re not careful.

20. "Small Boy" - Vincent Price: Heh-heh, somebody took a perfectly innocent Vincent Price cooking lesson and made it sound like he was cooking children. And it made me laugh.

21. "Former Lee Warmer" - Alice Cooper: My all-time favorite Alice Cooper song.

22. "Jack the Ripper" - Jack White: From a John Peel Session, a quite different version of the Screaming Lord Sutch song. The idea here was to close with White announcing "Screaming Lord Sutch," which takes us back to track one and making the whole disc a big loop. Which of course doesn't work if you set it to "random."

10 Comments:

Blogger Kelly said...

Awesome list dude!

8:59 AM  
Blogger ~d said...

WOW! Jack White? Like, uh, The White Stripes/Raconetours?
Your mix is super!
WOOOO!

10:08 AM  
Blogger ekrobi said...

Awww, look at my brother, rocking the Godspeed You! Black Emperor. I'm so proud!

12:52 PM  
Blogger ~d said...

Dude, I so didnt catch the bit abt your baby. I feel like a total heel!
Crikes!

Forgive, dude?

5:58 PM  
Blogger Karen M said...

Yay! I thought it was you. I finally got a chance to listen last night - it was really great! Screaming Lord Sutch always makes me smile, and I have yet to find the person who just doesn't like zombies.

I've been on a Cannibal!/Ravenous/Alfred Packer kick lately, so I thought the Vincent Price recipe was pretty funny.

Thanks again for the terrific mix!

2:02 PM  
Blogger Nino the Mindboggler said...

This is awesome... Roky Erickson, GSYB!, etc....

If you're so inclined, I'd *LOVE* a copy :D

4:04 PM  
Blogger PunchBuggyBlues said...

I'm inclined to send a copy to anyone who wants one. Just drop me a line with where to send it to.

4:13 PM  
Blogger ~d said...

hey yo, yo yo!
Would you believe I thought abt your Danny Elfman question and the Oogie Boogie Blues TODAY!
So I dug out my CD and (ahem)
this is whats I knows: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack, Performed by Ken Page with Ed Ivory.
I hope this (?) answers your question!
YAY!

2:57 PM  
Blogger ~d said...

hey you!
Thank you for the CDs!

I am throwing together a few for you as well!

I have your mixmania list:

if you,
or WHEN you can
will you send me the uhhh
white stripes playlist.
my itunes thing usually recognizes new stuff, but it does not recognize the WS.

BEST!
~d

7:51 AM  
Blogger waltzingmathilda said...

Technically, you could have ended the Zombie Suite after the Rob Zombie song. Right?

3:44 PM  

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