10 Heaviest Head Banging Horror Films

Hail Satan and prepare to rock your socks off!

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Since the dawn of time heavy metal and horror have always gone hand-in-hand. Both often contain dark, violent imagery and are typically shunned by the “good” side of society. Occasionally, when the stars align just right and the full moon shines bright, metal and horror join forces as knights in Satan’s service with the hope of creating something so outrageously metal it melts your face off. The results of this unholy union have fluctuated over the years — not every album can go platinum — but when the two perfectly sync up the results are strong enough to cause an angel to lose its wings. If you’re a square that prefers gutless disco you may want to sit this one out, because we’re going to turn it up to 11, throw up the horns, and pledge our allegiance to the Prince of Darkness.

Keep reading for a look at the 10 best heavy metal horror movies as voted on by Rob Hunter, Kieran Fisher, Brad Gullickson, Meg Shields, Jacob Trussell, and myself.

Red Dots10. Blood Tracks (1985)

Blood Tracks

In this Swedish knock-off of The Hills Have Eyes, real life glam rockers Easy Action star as a hair metal band that travel to an abandoned factory to shoot a music video and then get trapped in by an avalanche, falling victim to a murderous, mutated family. It’s as wonderful as it sounds. Need further proof? During one scene some models are complaining about the snow and one of them says, “Yeah, I’m gonna freeze my tits off!” To which the sleazy producer/manager/dude retorts, “Who told you snow was warm…baby?” 5 stars! — Chris Coffel


9. Vicious Lips (1986)

Vicious Lips

In the future an all-girl rock band struggling to make it in the cutthroat music world get the opportunity to perform at the most popular club in the galaxy. As soon as they receive this golden ticket their lead singer is killed putting them in a frantic search for a replacement. Luckily they find a girl on the street that actually can sing and things seem to be back on the up and up, but then they crash their spaceship and realize they’re carrying some not so nice cargo. Vicious Lips is more new wave than metal, but that means we get awesome hair, awesome makeup, and some awesome music from Sue Saad and the Next. — Chris Coffel


8. Hard Rock Zombies (1985)

Hard Rock Zombies

It’s difficult to define a “perfect” movie as we all have our own subjective tastes. However, when the question is posed to people, you tend to find that movies like Citizen Kane, The Godfather, and Hard Rock Zombies are mostly always mentioned in the conversation. While I don’t consider Hard Rock Zombies to be a perfect movie (although it’s damn near close), I do understand why it’s regarded by film historians, critics, and fans alike as an unquestionable artistic achievement. If you haven’t seen it yet, the film follows a resurrected hair metal band as they take on a village of werewolves, midget zombies, Nazis, and the reincarnated Adolf Hitler. What does it all mean? I don’t know. The best art is open to interpretation, but a part of me believes that Hard Rock Zombies’ message may hold the answers to the meaning of life. — Kieran Fisher


7. KISS Meets the Phantom of the Park (1978)

Kiss Meets The Phantom Of The Park

Let’s be clear. This made-for-TV flick is far from an objectively good film — it’s ridiculous, poorly acted, and cheesy as hell — but there’s something mesmerizing about it all the same. The four members of KISS play themselves, and as it was made at the height of their success they’re fully embracing the personas that made them curiosities. The Demon, the Starchild, the Catman, and Space Ace have supernatural abilities, and they use them to stop an evil robot-maker from destroying an amusement park and to rock and roll all night. It’s goofy as all hell, and no one walks away from it thinking KISS is cool. These guys are big ol’ nerds, and nothing rocks harder than being comfortable in your own skin. (Yes this idea is tainted some by the knowledge that KISS spent years after the film being embarrassed by its existence, but regret is far from metal so let’s just ignore that.) — Rob Hunter


6. Wild Zero (1999)

Wild Zero

If you’re angry to see this here because the musical spirit of the movie is more rock ‘n’ roll than metal then fret not. Rock ‘n’ is like the cool uncle of heavy metal and this list is a family gathering. Besides, Wild Zero is an awesome movie that will appeal to any fans of horror cinema and loud instrumentation. The story centers around a band who must save the world from aliens and their undead hordes. Think Plan 9 from Outer Space meets Rock ‘N’ Roll High School. If that combination doesn’t appeal to you then this gem isn’t for you. — Kieran Fisher


5. Black Roses (1988)

Black Roses

Canadian demons from the speakers! Black Roses is a so-bad-it’s-good Canuxploitation flick about a small town trying to ward off the impending arrival of the supposedly satanic heavy-metal band Black Roses. Turns out the reality is much worse: the rockers are full on demons,  intent on turning the town’s kids into zombified vessels for hellish forces. One of the main reasons the film has so thoroughly carved out its Heavy Metal horror cult status is its soundtrack (duh), which features tracks by the likes of King Kobra, Bang Tango, and Lizzy Borden. It’s wonderfully campy, cheesy, and completely absurd: aka all the things I love about metal. — Meg Shields


4. The Devil’s Candy (2015)

The Devil's Candy

Sean Byrne‘s blisteringly tense second feature focuses on a family at war with both a psychotic killer and quite possibly the devil Himself, and while the entire family is beautifully rendered the core relationship between the father and his teenage daughter shreds the loudest. They bond over heavy metal, and the film shares the love while setting action, terror, and intensity to an often soul-shaking soundtrack. Heavy metal is sometimes associated with nihilism, but Byrne and company suggest true headbangers know how to love and be loved too. — Rob Hunter


3. Trick or Treat (1986)

Trick Or Treat

In todays age, I think we’ve forgotten just how huge Freddy Krueger was. When A Nightmare on Elm Street dominated the box office in the mid to late 1980s, it spawned everything from Freddy rap albums to Talking Freddy Dolls. Everyone wanted in on the action, especially film producers, who would try to recapture the Freddy essence in new characters. From the foreign (Mahakaal) to the bonkers (Brainscan), nothing quiet topped heavy metal super star Sammi Curr, the Krueger clone of Trick Or Treat. Released in 1986, Trick Or Treat blends the Satanic Panic fueled era of 80’s Heavy Metal with the silly supernatural terror of late phases Freddy. After dying in a tragic fire, Sammi Curr’s number one fan, Eddie, finds himself in possession of Sammi’s final album. Naturally, it’s possessed by Sammi’s evil spirit and after a little Pepsi spills on Eddies stereo system Curr becomes corporeal and wreaks havoc in the name of metal! And revenge! But mostly metal! Scored partially by Hellraiser composer Christopher Young and the band Fastway, what’s most surprising about this peak metal film is that the voice of our heavy metal god is Dave King, future lead singer of Celtic Punk band Flogging Molly. — Jacob Trussell


2. The Gate (1987)

The Gate

Press Play: “In a time before the earth, before the sun, and before the light of the stars. When all was darkness and chaos, the old gods, the forgotten gods, ruled the darkness. What was theirs now belongs to the world of light and substance, and the old gods, the rightful masters, are jealous. Watching mankind with a hatred that is boundless as the stars, with plans for the destruction of man that are beyond imagining. There is a passageway between our physical world of light and pleasure and their spiritual world of madness and pain. A gate behind which the demons wait for a chance to take back what is theirs.” Bad move, bro. Now all the dark gods need is the blood of your dead dog and our world is truly hosed. The Gate is no mere heavy metal horror. The film is a step-by-step guide on how to unlock the unholiest of holies. Within every backyard is an opportunity to bring everything we hold dear crashing down. Leave the geodes where you found them. Cremate Angus. Tell Terry to play his thrasher metal somewhere else. — Brad Gullickson


1. Deathgasm (2015)

Deathgasm

Brodie and Zakk are a couple of heavy metal outcasts living in a small, boring town in New Zealand. After learning that popular metal musician Rikki Daggers lives nearby the two decide to break into his house where they steal an album. Hidden in the album is some sheet music that the duo promptly decide to play. In doing so they summon a demon. What proceeds is bloody, gory, hilarious insanity that all adds up to what is arguably the greatest party movie of all time. Invite all your closest metalheads over, pledge your allegiance to Satan and allow this movie to melt all your faces. And don’t forget the ice cream. — Chris Coffel

Red Dots

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My name is Chris Coffel and I usually write about Nicolas Cage. When I'm not writing about Nicolas Cage I'm usually thinking about writing about Nicolas Cage.