Audio

Super Soundtracks: Trick Or Treat (1986)

The one that started it all. This is a Super Soundtrack The Shindig has bumped for years. Upon a recent listening, we thought “Hey, we should post this. Maybe everyone that likes Trick or Treat will dig this deluxe version.” Don’t ask and you still might receive, I guess.

Trick or Treat is a special movie with a pretty special soundtrack. Not only is it a Halloween movie with a Referentially-Inclusive-Halloween-Title-Track, but it has an entire album’s worth of tunes for an almost out-of-the-box Super Soundtrack. This makes it a great choice to kick off our Super Soundtracks feature.

What’s also fun is how expository these songs are. Without being a musical or even a rock opera, this soundtrack describes almost exactly what’s happening on screen while it’s happening.

Eddie’s getting mad and ripping all his posters off the wall? “Tear Down the walls! Tearing ‘em down!” 

Eddie’s feeling so beaten down he just wants to give it all up? “Don’t stop the fight! Don’t die now!”

Eddie’s finally getting a little revenge? “Get tough! This boy’s had enough!”

It’s just so awesomely explicit.

Some of these songs though, provided by 80’s butt-rocker’s Fastway, barely get enough screen time. One song, Hold On to the Night (a personal favorite) only appears in the film backwards. For shame!

So we chopped, diced, sliced and spruced this Super Soundtrack to feature the entire album rearranged linearly with a ton movie clips, plus an extra special addition that doesn’t appear on the original release!

It’s the closet thing to watching Trick or Treat without actually watching Trick or Treat, which you should also do this October.

Provided here is a quick link to download a zip version of the Trick Or Treat Super Sound Track!

And below is an audio player for your streaming pleasure.

Happy Halloween!

 

Audio

Scream Dream

098_scream-dreamTRACK #98:

Scream Dream by Rikk-O-Shay

The first 2 minutes of this 1989 Rock ‘N Roll Horror opus is literally a girl screaming. Now I know 2 minutes might not sound like a long time, but when it’s one chick screaming over and over, almost identically each time, it feels like some godforsaken pit of eternity. It’s one of the most excruciating openings to any film I’ve ever seen.

Yeah, she’s half naked, and a chainsaw eventually rips through her crotch, but that doesn’t change the fundamental essence of what this scene asks of its audience: can you ignore every instinct you have to cancel this shit and endure?

At first it just seems like a really long scream, and you imagine it can’t possibly keep going. Then you can’t believe it’s still happening. About 20 seconds in, it becomes humorous. This quickly fades. Seriously? She’s still screaming?

You still have another minute and a half.

Each second is another dare: how long will you just sit there and watch this? It becomes almost suspenseful in its annoyance. How long will this persist? Then, self reflection sets in: Why am I doing this? What’s wrong me? Are these the choices of my life?

Then the questions: How ever did someone endeavor to shoot this? To edit this?! Watch this repeatedly to tighten it up? Holy shit, this might have been longer…

What mad sadist would subject himself, his crew and his audience to this?

Then the screaming stops.

As the memory of that horror throbs in your eardrum like a stubbed toe, the words “written and directed by Donald Farmer” appear. The architect of your pain has a name. If you know this name, you’re fully aware of what’s to come. If you don’t, by the time it’s over, you will.

It’s a ballsy move, and for those with the fortitude, the subsequent 60 minutes are pure gold.

When i watch garbage, I want something akin Scream Dream; shoestring relentlessness that’s unapologetic, mind boggling and approaching unwatchable while remaining entertaining. It’s not best in show, but it delivers enough to satisfy, and certainly more than most of the scrubs on this list.

When I watch a Rock ‘N Roll Horror flick, I also want something akin to Scream Dream; bad rock and lots of it. Whether it’s just the music, tons of footage of the bands playing it, or generalized Rock ‘N Roll goings-ons. Scream Dream’s got that in spades. Much more than most of these wanna-be’s.

It’s ain’t good, but it ain’t hard to watch (mostly) and at 68 minutes, it doesn’t stick around long enough to lose you, or make any sense of itself. It’s a winner of a loser.

More importantly, we’re getting this Title Track (incessantly) throughout. This puts Scream Dream up at the top of the Rock ‘N Roll Horror heap in our book.

 

Audio

Blood Tracks

097_blood-tracksTRACK #97:

Blood Tracks by Easy Action

If you listen to IMDb users, you’d think Blood Tracks was the worse movie ever made. But if you listen to IMDb users, you’d think every movie was the worst movie ever made. Those goofballs hand out that award like they got an overstocked warehouse they have to unload cheap.

My guess? They just haven’t seen enough movies, or at least not the right ones,  cause Blood Tracks (while certainly not approaching good) is definitely not approaching the “worst movie ever.” Hell, I wouldn’t even put it near a top 20. You need a little something special to make it into that crew, and frankly Blood Tracks just doesn’t have it.

Too mildly bad and too mostly forgettable for any such distinction, Blood Tracks sort of just exists, like a myriad of other Rock ‘N Roll Horrors begging to be better one way or the other.

What Blood Tracks does have (aside from its awesome double entendre title) is some sweet snow rocking compliments of (the fantastically named) Easy Action, posing as (the unfortunately named) Solid Gold.

See, Solid Gold’s looking to cut a video up in the mountains. Ya know, cause that’s the sleaziest, most rocking locale around. Not the seedy titty-bar in Panorama City, or the beach, or the pool at Caesar’s Palace, but the mountains – the freezing, shitty mountains.

It is worth noting that their rocking does cause an avalanche, putting their rock into a most ridiculous category, somewhere between DC Lacroix’s  shrunken head inducing laser metal and Dokken’s Freddy shredding guitar solos.

Now snowed in, the band, the management, the techs and the video hoes are all beset by a Hills Have Eyes-esque family. Mayhem ensues. Thankfully for us, not before Solid Gold gets a chance to rock out a bit and indulge in a little rock star behavior; drinking, drugs, snowbound sex.

Frankly though, not enough for my tastes. Could have used more, cause once the horror hits, the rocking ceases and these groupies and band members could be any old generic group of horror assholes.

The acting is pretty awesome however, and there are some great lines delivered poorly. Some of the kills are pretty interesting, and the whole thing moves rather quickly. But I’m just not getting enough of its terrible (or enough of its good) to make Blood Tracks much more than “Oh yeah, that Swedish one with the band in the snow.” Certainly not the worst movie I’ve ever seen. It’s not even the worst Rock ‘N Roll Horror movie I’ve seen. Not by a long-shot.

Particularly considering it has the wherewithal to serves up a Title Track, something no movie watcher should ever discredit.

Unfortunately, the movie seems to be the only place this track exists, as it can’t be found on any of Easy Action’s albums. Which is shameful, especially since In The Middle of Nowhere and We Go Rocking (both also featured in the film) are readily available. C’Mon gang, make with the goods! The Shindig needs more than just a snippet of you Title Track to represent.

But we beggars can’t be choosers, so at #97, here’s what exists of Easy Action’s Title Track triple threat Blood Tracks.

 

Monster Talk: Rock ‘N Roll Horror

I mentioned Rock ‘N Roll horror in my post about John Fasano, and all this Rock ‘N Roll Nightmare/ Black Roses business has got it on my mind. Let’s talk for a moment about this as both a concept and a genre.

Rock ‘N Roll Horror forms the very foundation of Halloween Shindig; it is its ethos. Wherever a monster is dancing, you will find us. Whenever a ghoul grabs a gitbox, we are there.hs_dance Should The Cryptkeeper or Elvira decide to rap, Halloween Shindig is lying in wait, ready to post that song.

As a genre though, Rock ‘N Roll Horror (or Metalsplotation as you will sometimes find it referred to) leaves us wanting. It has a few things going against it.

Firstly, there just aren’t that many. It’s a pretty thin sub-genre. 21 titles, by my count. You could stretch that number to 30+ if you got real liberal with your criteria and included some misfires from the late 90’s of new millennium. But I’m calling 21.

Additionally, it’s a dead genre. It had its time and place, but its moment in the moonlight has passed. The world has moved on.

I’d say “I wish they still made ’em like this,” but I don’t. That ship has sailed. You try your hand at this game post millennium and you’ll wind up with a Queen of The Damned, or a Rock ‘N Roll Frankenstein. Naw, just leave it where it was. Let it rest in peace; a product of a decade that is gone.shockem_guitardemon

On top of all that (and perhaps worst of all) it’s a pretty terrible sub-genre, and this breaks my
heart. Always eager for more of the bread and butter that bloats this blog, I’ve sat through most of them, waiting with bated breath for the next awesome addition to the playlist. I’m usually disappointed. There’s a couple hold-outs of which I’ve yet to get ahold of copies, so there’s still a little hope.

Of the 21 Rock ‘N Roll Horror films listed here, most of em aren’t worth a damn. They are time wasters of the highest order; not good enough to laud, not lousy enough to love. Somewhere in between they rest, trapped in a celluloid limbo of missed opportunities and boredom. It’s a genre after my own heart, and it consistently breaks it. Maybe it’s my fault. Maybe I got too much expectation. Or maybe Trick Or Treat is just that damn good. Probably a combination.

Here’s a list of the most prominent offenders; the ones you’ll see listed elsewhere if you dig hard enough.

  1. Terror On Tour 1980
  2. New Years Evil 1980
  3. Shock: Diversão Diabólica 1984
  4. Rocktober Blood 1984
  5. Blöderan 1984
  6. Monster Dog 1984
  7. Blood Tracks 1985
  8. Trick Or Treat 1986
  9. Edge of Hell / Rock ‘N Roll Nightmare 1987
  10. Slumber Party Massacre 2 1987
  11. Hack-O-Lantern 1988
  12. Hard Rock Zombies 1988
  13. Lone Wolf 1988
  14. Black Roses 1988
  15. Hard Rock Nightmare 1988
  16. Scream Dream 1989
  17. Houseboat Horror 1989
  18. Paganini Horror 1989
  19. Rockula 1990
  20. Dead Girls 1990
  21. Shock Em Dead 1991

True, this list excludes overtly music themed horror outings such as The Rocky Horror Picture Show and Phantom Of The Paradise. But for me, those fall into the altogether separate category of the Horror Musical. Things like Attack of the Killer Tomatoes or Little Shop Of Horrors also fall in with that category.

Naw, these are Rock ‘N Roll Horror movies. Movies where rocking has precedence. Movies where a rock band or singer takes the main stage and blows your doors off.trickor_concert2

The most depressing aspect of it all, even more than the lack of entertainment factor, is that not  every one of these 22 films has made the cut for The Shindig. Some of them have music that’s just that wildly out of place, or just that bad. And The Shindig has some pretty terrible music on it, so that oughta give you an idea of what you’re up against.

I’ll talk about all of these films by degrees over time. But for now, lets take a few of these suckers that did make the cut, and lay out a full-on Rock ‘N Roll Horror block here in the late ’90’s, before busting headlong into one of my favorite stretches of the entire Shindig, just in time for Halloween.