Is it Deathrock? Maybe it’s Goth Rock? It’ll have to be Psychobilly, right? No, no and no. This is Horror Punk, my friends and it’s about to rip your heart from your chest and then proceed to write an upbeat song about it. If you want to know more about this B-film, campy, Punk Rock formula, keep on reading.
A Brief History of Horror Punk
Horror Punk (also known as Horror Rock) was derivative of Punk Rock that included influences from 50s Doo-wop and novelty horror, B-Grade science-fiction and horror films and lots of camp. It’s lyrics often spoke of horror film antagonists like werewolves and vampires, but also about much more violent matter such as serial killers and gravediggers.
If you’re already thinking that it sounds a lot like Psychobilly, you’re right! Horror Punk is often mistaken for Psychobilly and Deathrock due to their common Punk influence and the similarity of their horror topics. It doesn’t help that many Horror Punk bands choose to mix these genres in their own sounds.
The deciding differences are that in contrast with Deathrock, Horror Punk is derectly influences by that authentic Punk sound and so they have stronger, faster tempos. Not to mention the fifties influences and campy tone, in contrast to Deathrock’s morose melodies. The difference between Psychobilly and Horror Punk is that the latter tends to have a more fifties influenced sound, while Horror Punk is rooted firmly in Punk rock.
Horror Punk Style
One aspect that sets Horror Punk away from other genre of Post-Punk is its signature style! Major style influences of Horror Punk tend to be from Punk Rock including leather jackets, Doc Martens and variations on the classic Mohawk. Fifties and Rockabilly styles can also find their way into the look, often incorporated fifties shoes, blazers, blouses and hair. The Misfits, horror Punk veterans even coined the “Devil Lock”. The name for a thick strand of hair, that hangs over the face that a signature for many Psychobilly styles. Lastly, you can’t forget inspiration from zombies and other horror film creatures like vampires or witches. Don’t forget that classic skull face-paint.
Bands to Check out
Misfits are the most popular, Blitzkid, The Cramps, Plan 9, Samhain, Gorgeous Frankenstein.
What’s your favourite Horror Punk Band? If you’re a Horror Punk enthusiast, tell us, what do you think of the reincarnation of The Misfits?