It’s up for grabs whether The Nightmare Before Christmas counts as a Halloween Movie or a Christmas Movie. The stop-motion animation classic, produced by Tim Burton, is often lumped in with seasonally spooky fare, but the film’s plot hinges around Jack Skellington’s infatuation with Christmas Town. Personally, I usually wait until at least November 1st, the phase change between the holiday seasons, for my annual revisit to the film. Danny Elfman’s gloriously macabre soundtrack makes for an ideal November appetizer to the oncoming blitz of holiday music to come: the songs have their share of jingle bells, but also choruses of demon children and grim grinning ghosts.
Cover Classics takes a closer look at all-cover albums of the past, their genesis, and their legacy.
Is The Nightmare Before Christmas a Halloween movie or a Christmas movie? Regardless of which team you are on, the soundtrack of the movie is still a good way to get in the spooky spirit. The premise of the movie originated from a poem written by Tim Burton in 1982. Jack, the Pumpkin King, rules over Halloween Town, home to a variety of monsters. When he discovers Christmas Town, he wants to shake things up and try out the novel holiday in Halloween Town. Hijinks abound and go awry, with plenty of opportunities to sing along.
In 1990, Walt Disney Studios took the project on as a full-length movie. However, the stop-motion, animated movie was released in 1993 under the Touchstone Pictures moniker because Walt Disney doubted its kid-friendliness. The movie defied expectations and became popular, receiving positive reviews from critics and audiences alike. The music itself also received accolades. Danny Elfman, the singing voice of Jack, wrote the songs and score of the original movie. The soundtrack won the Saturn Award for Best Music, awarded by the Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror Films.
Upon the 15th anniversary of the movie, a cover album of the original soundtrack, Nightmare Revisited, was released in 2008. Studded with covers from a variety of alternative rock, punk, and (some may say) emo acts, the cover album reached the US Billboard 200. Listen to a few covers spanning the story line and then check the track list to see if your favorite angsty band of the aughts features.