38 Halloween Songs You Won't Find On Your Parents' Playlist

By Rose Wythe

October 24, 2022

Let’s be real: You’re probably going to want some background music while you stuff your face with candy come Oct. 31. Because there is nothing better than unwrapping your fifth Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup and simultaneously rockin’ out, enjoy these modern Halloween-themed songs below. (No “Monster Mash” allowed.)

Since Halloween is right around the corner, and iHeartRadio has plenty of radio stations to celebrate Spooky Season. From classic Halloween songs to spine-chilling ghost stories, iHeartRadio has plenty of treats for its listeners, and even a few tricks. Halloween Radio takes listeners through a variety of Halloween singles and fun and scary hits. Ghost Stories Radio finds iHeartRadio going through some of its favorite tales and horror stories to get listeners in a spooky mood.

1. “bury a friend” - Billie Eilish

The singer's haunting voice sends chills down our spine in this track written in the perspective of a monster under her bed, which ends up being Eilish herself.

2. "Ghostbusters" - WALK THE MOON

For the remake of the movie, WALK THE MOON re-created the classic Ghostbusters theme song.

3. “Pa Pa Power” - Dead Man’s Bones

Hey girl, did you know Ryan Gosling is in a band? Check out Dead Man’s Bones! Ryan sings and plays piano in this spooky song.

4. “Little Fang” - Avey Tare’s Slasher Flicks

Animal Collective’s Avey Tare created a fun horror band called Slasher Flicks. His leading single is actually a song about his cat, Little Fang.

5. “Howlin’ For You” - The Black Keys

Here’s a solid modern Halloween rock n’ roll track by The Black Keys — ‘cause baby they’re howlin’ for you.

6. “Perhaps Vampires Is A Bit Strong But…” - Arctic Monkeys

This Arctic Monkeys song might actually be about lack of hometown support for the band… but let’s not let that little fact take away from the spirit of the holiday. 

7. “Animal” - Neon Trees

Find your favorite cannibal (one in costume!) and take a bite of their heart tonight. Neon Trees are sure to build up your Halloween playlist.

8. “Heads Will Roll” - Yeah Yeah Yeahs

We think Karen O. just wants you to metaphorically dance until your head falls off. She does a pretty good job communicating that in this indie dance song.

9. “Ghost” - Mystery Skulls

Formerly of The Secret Handshake, Luis Dubuc has changed his sound to compliment the EDM pop scene. Be sure to check out the Scooby Doo-like horror music video for “Ghost” too!

10. “Monster” - Kanye West, Jay Z, Rick Ross, Nicki Minaj, Bon Iver

This one’s NSAP: Not Safe Around Parents. Kanye West, Jay Z, Rick Ross, Nicki Minaj, and Bon Iver (oh hey, 2012 Grammys) are all on this track… need we say more?

11. “Cannibal” - Kesha

Moral of the story in this song? If you tell Kesha she’s pretty… she might put your liver on her platter. Tread lightly. 

12. “Tear You Apart” - She Wants Revenge

“Tear You Apart” climbed the charts for a second time after appearing in American Horror Story: Hotel. If you’re a movie buff too, check out She Wants Revenge’s accompanying music video directed by Joaquin Phoenix.

13. “Total Zombie” - Day Wave

Definitely the newest artist on this list, Day Wave has been building momentum with a shoegaze revival. This dreamy pop song will make your head feel like a zombie's.

14. "goosebumps" - Travis Scott featuring Kendrick Lamar

This collaboration between Travis Scott and Kendrick Lamar has an eerie sound to it that is fitting for a Halloween bash.

15. "There Will Be Blood" - Kim Petras

Kim Petras sings about your demise on this spooky dance track off of her Halloween-themed Turn Off The Light mixtape.

16. “True Blood” - Justin Timberlake

To wrap up your party, you have to bring in JT. His "True Blood" dance anthem is the perfect Halloween party closer.

17. “I Put a Spell On You” - She & Him

“I Put a Spell On You” is the perfect slow dance to wrap your evening for your friends who just won't quit. Try this cover version by Zooey Deschanel.

18. "Look What You Made Me Do" - Taylor Swift

With an ominous beat and Taylor dressed as a literal zombie in the track's music video, this song definitely makes the cut.

19. "Sweet But Psycho" - Ava Max

The scream at the start of the track will definitely add to the spooky vibe.

20. "Monsters" - All Time Low (ft. blackbear)

If you need more songs about monsters, but don’t want the classic hit, this single from All Time Low and blackbear should do the trick.

21. "Toxic" - Britney Spears

This iconic song filled with icy vocals, heavy synths, and creepy sounds will surely set the spooky mood.

22. "Disturbia" - Rihanna

This chilling bop was released the same year as the American thriller, "Disturbia," coincidence much?

23. "She Wolf" - Shakira

The perfect song to howl along to during a full moon!

24. "Halloween" - Phoebe Bridgers

The title says it all. This haunting, yet melancholy, melody is the kind you want to listen to on the way to a haunted house.

25. "Psycho Killer" - Talking Heads

If you're a fan of horror you'll love this classic! Although it's an upbeat tune, the lyrics represent the thoughts of a serial killer.

26. "Blinding Lights" - The Weeknd

The haunting synths on this song and The Weeknd's entire After Hours album is perfect to get into a spooky vibe. So much so that the singer has teamed up with Universal Studios' Halloween Horror Nights to create a haunted house based on the album.

27. Midnight Sky - Miley Cyrus

Much like "Blinding Lights," Miley Cyrus's 2020 synth-pop hit just has something ethereal and, for lack of a better word, witchy about it. That's probably because the song actually samples Stevie Nicks's classic "Edge of Seventeen." From the moment she came out with her powerful stage presence and twirling around with her shawls, she was accused of being a witch.

28. EAT ME - Demi Lovato (feat. Royal & the Serpent)

This track off Demi's latest album HOLY FVCK is gritty and rebellious, which is what Halloween is all about.

29. Unholy - Sam Smith (feat. Kim Petrus)

You definitely won't find Sam Smith & Kim Petras's latest release on any of your parents' playlists. The haunting choir that kicks off the song gives the sultry track the perfect amount of eeriness.

30. Maniac - Conan Gray

Conan's Gray 2019 track "Maniac" solidified itself as a new addition to the Halloween canon when he released a cinematic, spooky-themed music video.

31. Murder in My Mind - Kordhell

This is truly the ultimate Halloween party track. One YouTube comment from Phonk Nation on the song sums it up best: "This song is so fire that my great great grandpa came out his grave and told us about the 'good old days.''

32. Mary On A Cross - Ghost

Let's be real, Ghost's entire discography could serve as a Halloween playlist.

33. all the good girls go to hell - Billie Eilish

Billie Eilish's affinity for the macabre is best felt on this 2019 track. In a "Behind the Lyrics" session, Eilish explained, "This song is from the perspective of the devil. Basically, no matter how good you are, amazing you are, incredible you are, desperate measures will turn you bad eventually, at one point in your life."

34. Zombies - Childish Gambino

Zombies are a Halloween favorite, making this Childish Gambino song a no-brainer (get it?) for our playlist.

35. My Girlfriend is a Witch - October Country

36. Bloody Valentine - Machine Gun Kelly

Machine Gun Kelly and Megan Fox's love gets a little violent one one of his biggest hits.

37. Let's Kill Tonight - Panic! At The Disco

Staying on the theme of love, this Panic! song follows the bitter end of a relationship. It's post-punk sound harkens back to dreary bands like Joy Division and Bauhaus.

38. Lilith - Halsey

Halsey teamed up with Nine Inch Nails' Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross for If I Can't Have Love I Want Power, which this track is on.

Videos: YouTube

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