Werewolves are older than interested individuals might expect. After all, the ancient Greeks claimed Zeus turned Lycaon into a wolf for trying to trick him into eating human flesh. Since then, werewolves have been fixtures in numerous cultures. They remain popular, meaning they’ve inspired a fair amount of modern music.
Here are ten of the best songs about werewolves:
10. “Werewolves of London” – Warren Zevon
The modern view of horror movie monsters retains much inspiration from the Victorian era. For instance, consider “Werewolves of London,” which describes a man whose well-dressed exterior conceals a murderous monster. Warren Zevon and his collaborators didn’t have any deeper meaning in mind when they penned the song. However, it’s hard to miss this song’s pop culture influences, which reached much further back than the late 1970s.
9. “Witch Wolf” – Styx
There has never been a canon for what werewolves are supposed to be. As a result, it isn’t uncommon to see people mix and match them with other figures from myth, legend, and folklore. In “Witch Wolf,” Styx followed a much-tread-upon path.
8. “Wolf Moon” – Type O Negative
Speaking of which, werewolves can transform a wide range of triggers. However, there can be no doubt that the narrator for “Wolf Moon” has one of the more memorable ones. It isn’t hard to figure out what Type O Negative frontman Pete Steele was singing about in this song. After all, its extensive use of werewolf imagery doesn’t do much to disguise how it describes the narrator performing oral sex on a woman during menstruation. Amusingly, Steele joked about turning into a pink Poodle afterward.
7. “Old Moon Madness” – Thin Lizzy
Thin Lizzy is an Irish band that formed in the late 1960s. It’s still around, but its remaining members no longer make new music under its name. “Old Moon Madness” comes from the early 1970s, close to the start of the band’s career. This is a surprisingly spooky song, thus making it well-suited for people in that kind of mood.
6. “Howlin’ For You” – The Black Keys
Werewolves aren’t as popular as vampires when it comes to paranormal romance. However, there’s no doubt they have their niche. After all, the two don’t compete with one another. Werewolves tend to be about the primal side of things, which isn’t a popular take for their vampiric counterparts. In any case, “Howlin’ For You” is about a man with an intense longing for a woman. It’s easy to read more into it because the music video features a woman seducing before killing the men who murdered her father one by one.
5. “Bark At The Moon” – Ozzy Osbourne
“Bark At the Moon” is the title track of Ozzy Osbourne’s third studio album from 1983. Famously, it was the first time the rockstar had filmed a music video, which saw him decked out in extensive monster makeup. The lyrics paint a picture of a vengeful monster returned from the dead. In contrast, the music video was much more influenced by the Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, so much so that it even depicted Osbourne as a mad scientist who downed a concoction he shouldn’t have.
4. “Howl” – Florence + the Machine
It isn’t uncommon for people to use monsters as metaphors. “Howl” from Florence + the Machine is an excellent example. The narrator is consumed with passion for her lover. As a result, she presents herself as a monster, while her lover is the moon that inspires that monstrousness. Curiously, there’s an element of guilt in the lyrics. Specifically, the narrator seems to feel she is defiling her lover, which supports the interpretation that she is feeling as intensely as she is for the first time.
3. “Of Wolf and Man” – Metallica
Metallica’s “Of Wolf and Men” is often interpreted to have a deeper meaning than it seems on initial consideration. There’s no doubt it’s about a werewolf. However, people often interpret the lyrics to mean that humans are no different from animals on our most fundamental level. Indeed, one can argue that humans are closer to wolves than most other animals because we’re pack hunters. It’s why our ancestors got along so well, thus leading to the development of dogs.
2. “Werewolf, Baby!” – Rob Zombie
Unsurprisingly, an artist named for a horror movie monster enjoys singing about them from time to time. “Werewolf, Baby!” touches upon many of the same themes as other songs on this list. For example, there’s the idea that even the purest individual can become monstrous under the right circumstances. Similarly, there’s the idea of becoming a werewolf because of the all-consuming passion of an intense relationship. Of course, “Werewolf, Baby!” is also a great, hard-hitting song that people can rock out to if they’re in the right mood.
1. “The Werewolf” – Paul Simon
“The Werewolf” is a surprisingly recent song. That is because Paul Simon released it on Stranger to Stranger, which came out in 2016. The studio album is famous for being very experimental. As such, “The Werewolf” features two instruments that don’t see much use in Western music. One would be a one-stringed Indian instrument called a gopichand, while the other would be a box-shaped Peruvian instrument called a cajon. That said, “The Werewolf” is still the kind of acoustic, folk-influenced song one would expect from Simon.
It isn’t 100 percent clear what the titular monster is supposed to represent. One popular line of speculation is that it’s the specter of death itself. This is not a novel reading. Wolves are often seen as positive representations of nature’s majesty in modern times. They had much worse reputations in the past, which is one of the reasons why their numbers plummeted over time.
You can also read:
- The 10 Best Leon Russell Songs of All-Time
- Songs with “Jukebox” in the Title: 6 Select Cuts
- The 10 Best Lindsay Ell Songs of All-Time
- Ranking The 10 Best Beach Boys Albums