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The 15 Greatest Songs About Vampires

The best bloodsucking tunes by Neil Young, Smashing Pumpkins, My Chemical Romance and more

Bela Lugosi as Count MoraClarence Sinclair Bull/John Kobal Foundation/Getty Images

These days, vampires are mostly associated with books, movies and television series, but there's a long history of sexy blood suckers turning up in pop music. Here's a variety of takes on vampirism in pop music – from sexual and political metaphors to giddy expressions of horror movie fandom.

By Matthew Perpetua

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Concrete Blonde, ‘Bloodletting (The Vampire Song)’

Concrete Blonde's 1990 track "Bloodletting (The Vampire Song)" revels in its vamp glamour, slinking along with a sexy groove and slashing horror-movie guitars as frontwoman Johnette Napolitano sings entirely unambiguous lyrics about New Orleans blood suckers straight out of an Anne Rice novel.

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Smashing Pumpkins, ‘Bullet With Butterfly Wings’

"Bullet With Butterfly Wings" isn't really a song about vampires – like most Smashing Pumpkins songs, it's mostly about frontman Billy Corgan's grandiose angst and alienation – but the song kicks off with one of the most memorable vampire-related lyrics in rock history: "The world is vampire sent to draiiiiin!" Why is the world a vampire? Because it sucks, duh.

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Slayer, ‘At Dawn They Sleep’

Slayer are usually focused on singing about serial killers, Satanism and hell, but they were inspired to write about vampires in "At Dawn They Sleep," a morbid and unrelentingly heavy cut from their 1985 album Hell Awaits.

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My Chemical Romance, ‘Vampires Will Never Hurt You’

My Chemical Romance's debut single "Vampires Will Never Hurt You" immediately established the New Jersey rockers as a band eager to merge the melodrama of emo with images lifted from horror and sci-fi. More recently, the band wrote "Vampire Money," a snarky tune making fun of bands jumping on the vampire bandwagon to score lucrative spots on Twilight soundtracks.

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Helium, ‘Baby Vampire Made Me’

Long before Mary Timony teamed up with Sleater-Kinney's Carrie Brownstein and Janet Weiss to form Wild Flag, she was the frontwoman of the Nineties indie band Helium. Helium's first EP Pirate Prude featured multiple songs referencing vampires, the best being "Baby Vampire Made Me," a tense rocker in which Timony sings from the perspective of a ravenous blood sucker out to devour and infect everyone in sight.

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The Misfits, ‘Vampira’

New Jersey punks the Misfits made their name on fast rockers about monsters and horror movies, so it comes as no surprise that one of their best songs happens to be a gleeful celebration of vampires. "Vampira," a quick number from their debut album Walk Among Us, finds frontman Glenn Danzig outlining his fantasy to hook up with vampire lady in a cemetery.

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The Birthday Party, ‘Release the Bats’

The Birthday Party's "Release the Bats" is prime gothic punk, with a young Nick Cave singing hysterical lyrics about an encounter with a girl who is either totally turned on by vampires and bats, or is actually a vampire herself. Either way, it's awesome to hear Cave wail stuff like "sex vampire, cool machine!"

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