Jan 292015

“What is that?!?!” my wife said across the kitchen table one evening last week, as we each picked away at some work on our laptops. I was playing an album by Clinic in the background.

“I should have known you wouldn’t like them,” I said, “They appeal to my love of ’70s Satan movies.”

“Yeah,” she said, “it sounds like the Cure doing the soundtrack for a Satan movie.”

My wife shares a lot of my music tastes, but she doesn’t like creepy music. Or creepy movies or books or paintings, for that matter. She couldn’t believe how excited I was, recently, to tear through a new book on Charles Manson. The rare times she makes the mistake of being in a room with me while I’m watching a movie like The Omen and cackling with laughter she’s shocked at my ability to a) enjoy such schlock and b) laugh at the scary bits.

You know what Beatles song she doesn’t like, a song I assume all Beatles fans (which she is) likes? “Come Together,” because she says it creeps her out. I love the cult vibe behind that song. I love what I call Satan Movie Rock: Clinic, Psychic TV, individual songs like “Come Together” and “Season of the Witch”… I’m not talking about stupid songs about Satan, but songs that Satan might hum in a private moment.

How do you get your Satan on?


  18 Responses to “Satan Movie Rock!”

  1. cliff sovinsanity

    I realize now it’s easy to laugh at groups like Ministry and Skinny Puppy but when I need to get my Satan on I’ll listen to “Stigmata” or “Smothered Hope”. Songs like those really hit a sweet spot when I was an angry young lad in my late teens and have carried on today. Back then though I couldn’t cross the tracks and listen to Satan rock bands like Judas Priest, WASP and Metal Church.

    Hey, you know what song is really creepy ? “Mama” by Phil Collins.

  2. H. Munster

    I never heard that one, but you remind me that the first few times I heard John Lennon’s “Mother” I found it difficult to listen to, and not because I didn’t like it.

  3. 2000 Man

    I’m not sure how I get my Satan on, cuz I don’t think he’s real. I was driving a co worker to a customer one day, and he was a guitar player and while our musical tastes were different (he liked big hits and whatever was on radio), we did have some common ground. I had Black Sabbath’s Symptom of the Universe collection in the car, and I figured we’d connect on that. As it’s playing he says, “What is this?” I thought, “C’mon, dude – Sabbath!” but I said, ” A Black Sabbath best of kind of thing. You like them, don’t you?”

    He looked like I had just stuck a dead squid in his pants. I was looking at him squirm and he says, “Don’t you worry that you’ll go to hell if you listen to them?” I said, “No” and switched it to Sports Talk. We didn’t drive together much after that.

    I think the version of Midnight Rambler on Let It Bleed might fit your question, though. That is just a creepy, atmospheric and dark song. Live it’s more of a barn burner.

  4. My satanic tastes are not real strong, but for some reason at when I was a regular at the 9:30 Club in DC, they used to play a lot of Einstürzende Neubauten — didn’t matter who was playing that night, they would crank their creepy videos before and between sets. I was always fascinated by their stuff, and the Ministry videos too.

    It seems pretty tame now, but I was with a date at First Ave in Mpls and we saw Peter Gabriel’s Shock the Monkey video on a big screen before a show for the first time — (Jim Carroll band!) and she really freaked out. The scary monkeys got to her and he rises out of the ground at one point. Then she had to listen “People Who Die” — twice — because Jim didn’t really have that many songs to play. Not exactly the perfect evening for her . . .

    A band that stayed at a hotel I worked at was Lords of the New Church — they were not very scary even to a teenage funoka — with stuff like this:
    I don’t know if “the New Church” is the church of the devil, but it sucks.

    Finally, we used to stare at the gatefold for Hotel California and debate the devil upstairs:

  5. “Midnight Rambler” is definitely good stuff to listen to before going on a crime spree – or so I would imagine.

  6. BigSteve

    Just yesterday Richard Metzger posted this article on Dangerous Minds about his favorite Satanic Stones album.


    I’d never seen the Child of the Moon video linked there.

  7. 2000 Man

    I think Golden Earring’s Vanilla Queen was good for that, too. Man, I used to love being out at 3AM and getting lucky that the DJ needed to take a dump and getting all ten minutes of that one.


  8. I love Jellyfish as much as I love Venom!

    Teenage Fanclub – “Bandwagonesque” is one of my favorite albums ….and it came out the same time as one of my other favs by Cathedral called “Forest Of Equilibrium”. I have heard people describe Cathedral as a Sabbath album on half-speed and a dying old man on vocals. So, like chill out music for Satan.

    Cathdral – “ebony tears”

    funny you mention Clinic ……my band Dirty Power covered “Walking With Thee”. I was told that the guys in Clinic really loved it. Have a listen.

  9. What I’m about to say won’t reflect favorably on me, but it’s true: that’s the kind of dimestore rock snob opinion that drove me to found RTH so many years ago. I guess it will never end, the impulse among us to clutch onto purposefully “wrong” opinions. I may be guilty of this myself, but come on: in the entire Stones catalog the only thing he can listen to from start to finish is that uncharacteristic oddity? That’s like me thinking “Dancing in the Dark” is Springsteen’s greatest song.

  10. BigSteve

    Well, at one point he says ” I’m not saying that it IS the best Stones album, I’m just saying that it’s MY favorite.” I think the distinction between favorite and greatest is a useful one. A favorite album is often one with some personal associations. It might be that it came out at a particular time in your life when you were happy, or maybe the opposite, it was an album you clung to when you were going through a bad time. Opinions about what’s the greatest imply that an attempt is being made to be somewhat objective.

    I think Satanic Majesties definitely has its charms. Anyone who would rank it as the best Stones album is not being serious.

  11. Oh, I know, and I do this all the time (see The Undertones’ Positive Touch). That piece got me sentimental over the days when I used to roast Berlyant while Dr John would bash me over the head with a folding chair.

  12. misterioso

    I’ll admit that I am not at all sure I grasp the concept outlined here, but what came to mind for me is this really creepy sounding alleged Beatle “outtake” or (if anything) home recording called “The Candle Burns” (or sometimes “Peace of Mind”) which sounds to me suspiciously like a Manson family campfire song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ld_vpZE36w8

    Anyway, as far as I know no one has stepped forward to claim this song, but it used to turn up on Beatle bootlegs.

  13. cliff sovinsanity

    On a related note, here are 2 short clips from Metal: A Headbanger’s Journey if only to further our research.

    Satan: http://youtu.be/puwllq0fBLs
    The Tritone: http://youtu.be/QDhJ8IvKKTA

  14. patrock, these are great entries to Satan’s Jukebox!

  15. Gentle on Satan’s Mind.

  16. I’m on board with Midnight Rambler and Gimmie Shelter. I also used to think Memo From Turner was kind of creepy (not scary, just creepy).

    Also, Dig Lazarus Dig by Nick Cave, and Murder in the Red Barn by Tom Waits.

  17. hrrundivbakshi

    Seems like as good a time as any to post this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2n5qVJEg3qA

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