Various Artists

Monsters, Ghouls, Goblins, and Demons

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Monsters, Ghouls, Goblins, and Demons is a collection of songs designed for Halloween; although not every song is specifically Halloween-related, most have some sort of frightening theme, such as devils (INXS' "Devil Inside"), nightmares (Alice Cooper's "Welcome to My Nightmare"), paranoia (Rockwell's "Somebody's Watching Me"), going crazy (Napoleon XIV's infamous "They're Coming to Take Me Away, Ha-Haaa!"), movie and TV themes (Oingo Boingo's "Weird Science," Ray Parker Jr.'s "Ghostbusters," "The Addams Family Theme"), and so on. Bobby "Boris" Pickett's prerequisite "Monster Mash" is here, too, of course. Naturally, the collection doesn't hang together musically, but it's not likely that anyone buying a Halloween-themed compilation of mostly familiar songs will care much. A more relevant flaw is the stretch the compilers make when fitting the tracks into this Halloween context; some songs sound as though they were chosen simply because their choruses contained lyrics that could be vaguely associated with "spookiness," and the overall selection seems a bit arbitrary, as though most of these songs could easily be replaced without noticeably changing the effect (after all, there is no shortage of rock songs with the word "devil" in the title). Still, even if most of its songs don't concern the title subject, Monsters, Ghouls, Goblins, and Demons is an entertaining listen and an appropriate choice for background music at Halloween parties.

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