Audio: Re-Animator (1985)

The main theme to Stuart Gordon’s Re-Animator (1985) lifts entire passages from the score from Psycho (1960), which is why it sounds so familiar. But then it gleefully nineteen-eighties them up with rollicking march-time electronic percussion. The result is impossible not to like, although Psycho composer Bernard Herrmann was probably glad that he didn’t live to see it. Composed by Richard Band.

Audio: Halloween (1978)

John Carpenter’s Halloween (1978) is great for many reasons, not the least of which is its theme music. The urgency of the 5/4 piano motif above ominous synthesizer orchestration, all performed by Carpenter himself, distills the pomp of giallo prog rock to a proto-New Wave, Zen-like meditation of one’s own imminent and bloody demise. Composed by John Carpenter.