Twisted Sister‘s “Captain Howdy” faces off against Iron Maiden‘s “Fear of the Dark” in round one of Ultimate Classic Rock's Scariest Song Battle. Who gets your vote?
In honor of Halloween, we’ve chosen 16 of rock’s scariest songs. The field will be sliced, diced and chopped in half every week based on your votes, until only the most terrifying song in rock history remains alive.
The churning, sinister “Captain Howdy” is the first segment of the two-part “Horror-Teria” suite on Twisted Sister’s triple-platinum Stay Hungry album. It’s told from the point of view of a psychotic mass murder who lures, tortures and kills little children. (Don’t worry, he gets his just desserts in part two, “Street Justice.”) Frontman Dee Snider portrayed the character on the big screen as the star of 1998’s Strangeland, and has recently announced plans to create a sequel.
The title track from Iron Maiden’s 1992 album Fear of the Dark perfectly captures the terrors of an evening walk that suddenly turns creepy: “Have you ever been alone at night / Through your heard footsteps behind / And turned around and no-one’s there / And as you quicken up your pace / You find it hard to look again / Because you’re sure there’s someone there?” The song has earned a seemingly permanent place on the band’s live set lists … which is fine as long as they leave some lights on in the arena.
You can listen to both songs below so you can make an informed choice. You can vote once per hour in each of the eight first round Rock’s Scariest Song battles until polls close on Oct. 12 at 11:59PM ET. Your choice for Rock’s Scariest Song of all time will be revealed on Nov. 1, 2015.