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38 Days Till Halloween
9/23/2013

John Debney - The Halloween Tree (1993)
This 1972 novel by Ray Bradbuy was turned into a TV movie in 1993 by Hanna-Barbera. Narrated by the author (who won an Emmy for the screenplay), the movie tells the story of a group of kids learning about the origins of Halloween in an effort to save their friend’s spirit from their guide, a mysterious man named Moundshroud. While I have not read the book, this movie is terrific – required viewing every year. It is just scary enough to be spooky without giving kids nightmares. Debney has been composing music for film and television for years. This is a solid little soundtrack.

Maury Laws & Jules Bass - Mad Monster Party? (1967)
From the folks who brought us all those stop-motion animated Christmas specials comes this feature-length film. With the voices of Boris Karloff and Phyllis Diller, and impersonated voices of Jimmy Stewart and Peter Lorre, it’s cute (though it runs too long). There are plenty of corny jokes and silly songs. The soundtrack isn’t very spooky, but “The Mummy” is a cute little song.

Omen (Deluxe Edition) (1976)
Pretty disconcerting to jump from the finale of “Mad Monster Party?” to friggin’ “Ave Satani”, one of the creepiest themes I’ve ever heard. Jerry Goldsmith rightly won an Oscar for this … he think he coulda won it for “Ave Satani” alone. The longer the soundtrack goes, the more twisted it gets (much like the movie). The vocals are disturbing … it is an awesome soundtrack. “The Fall”, “The Dogs Attack”, and “Beheaded” are my favorites.

Philip Glass Performed by Kronos Quartet - Score for Dracula (1931)
I’ve actually watched the movie with this score, and without question it adds to the drama and effectiveness of the film. Even on its own, it is very good music – lots of tension.

Pino Donaggio - The Black Cat Soundtrack (1981)
Kind of a strange thing to have here … the movie is an uninspired Fulci horror film that I’ve never seen. This score is pretty good – just not sure what it is doing here.

Rob Zombie - The Words and Music of Frankenstein (1999)
This is a strange offering from Zombie A Go-Go Records … it consists of 56 tracks of some of the best lines and musical sequences from three 30’s Frankenstein movies. It’s a good way to revisit those movies, but you’d be better off with the Frankenstein Legacy Collection of DVDs, which has those movies and more.

Robert Cobert Orchestra - Original Music from Dark Shadows (1969)
The theme is classic, as is “Collinwood”. I particularly like the tracks that have some narration. Some of the “pop” songs break the gloomy mood. Love “Shadows of the Night”.
 

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Here to burgle your turts
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Love the Halloween Tree and I've always loved the music - but I didn't realize it was ever released on disk! Awesome!

The first track reminds me so much of the Harry Potter theme.

I feel like a complete idiot though - never heard of John Debney which seems impossible considering his list of credits. I didn't even realize he did Hocus Pocus. I'll have to check out more of his scores.
 
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