Nightmare Fuel / Simple Minds

  • Simple Minds' Real To Real Cacophony album, and some songs written around the same time. The most obvious is Scar, the closing track of the album, which starts off relatively upbeat before it is revealed that the song is actually about a particularly gruesome car crash. The lyrics "Travelling through, flashback to you, fire, I see fire" and chorus being "Car passenger, fate at the wheel, Quick kiss of death." seem to describe this quite bluntly.
    • The first track on the album Real To Real is known to start off ominously enough before becoming very creepy a minute in. "Naked Eye" which follows contains some very odd lyrics and later on, "Carnival" contains the classic trope of creepy circus music to contrast with the anger of its chorus. "Factory" paints a very dark picture of someone stuck in a hopeless job who has a nervous breakdown. "Film Theme", an instrumental, seems to have been written to evoke Vampirish films. Even though it's one of the most upbeat songs on the album musically, "Calling Your Name" seems to be someone mourning a dead lover.
    • Without question, however, the most nightmare inducing song on the album is "Veldt", a sound collage of creepy noises, jungle sounds and ominous hidden voices "Don't go back there". If this doesn't creep out the listener, the way the tune suddenly drops into an even creepier section will.
    • Also, "Kaleidoscope," the main outtake from the album begins with an already creepy waltz piano, and the lyrics reveal that the character is a sociopath to say the least "Friends of mine, who ask to stay, they can turn around and walk".
  • "Garden Of Hate," a previous B Side, which many consider to be the bridge between the band's first album and this one, their second. The difference between styles is enormous- their debut album being a mostly upbeat punk album, and this one being a creepy post-punk album . As a result, this is a dark guitar based song with the upbeat organ contrasting. The song features such charming lyrics as "A girl I know got cut up one night, I don't know if I care, she was in my garden of hate, so many others are there". The way the song ends is extremely terrifying, with laughter fading into a rising synth section before coming to a somewhat abrupt stop.
  • This gem from "Wall Of Love" off Street Fighting Years:
    "Ah well it's not the sound of ghosts I hear,
    It's the devil with his chainsaw"
  • "Pleasantly Disturbed" and "Murder Story" off their first album.
    • "Pleasantly Disturbed," which closes the first side of the LP, is structured mainly of an ominous guitar riff from Charlie Burchill (who also provides some mournful violins later on the song) a slow pounding beat, and lyrics which hint at a girl named Susan running from a stalker. Nearing the end it gets very upbeat, but you can't shake the feeling you had at the beginning of the song even then.
    • "Murder Story" is built around a piano riff which resembles the synth of the albums' title track "Life In A Day." The lyrics describe an insecure loner, who gets "so scared if I don't get out at night" and has "nightmares of places people go to meet." Around halfway through the song, it becomes much faster, as both verses are repeated by Jim Kerr in a much more panicked tone. The song gets much noisier with distortion and clashing melodies, while vocals over dubs begin to frantically sing "She was my/your sister" and "It wasn't me." Then it after it seems it can't get any crazier, Jim finally confesses "IT WAS ME! IT WAS ME!" ... and then the album ends.
  • Their third album, Empires And Dance, should get special mention. While lyrically, it's not as outwardly dark as Real To Real Cacophony, but their vagueness can be quite disturbing, Jim saying things as ambiguous as "These reptiles scream" and "Run run run. The hollow man," and "Some friends of mine I thought were dead are coming back. What are you doing coming back? JACK!" The production is outright unsettling at times, with random shouts, nightmarish echoes, and off-sounding notes which make for some real Nightmare Fuel. The worst offender is most definitely "This Fear Of Gods" which closes side one of the record. A nervous sounding synth and bass line throughout, with such lovely lyrics as "Violence and vivisection. Violence and vivisection. Lust, lust, lust, lust."