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What Only Hardcore Horror Fans Noticed About The Music In AHS

From its first season, "American Horror Story" has utilized a very unique look and sound. The show's style is its greatest strength, and as some critics have argued, also its greatest weakness. The show distinguishes itself from other genre fare with inventive camera techniques, but its use of music is interesting in the way it doesn't innovate. Every season of "American Horror Story" pulls ideas from real life and other works of art. "Hotel," for example, took elements from a real-life hotel in Los Angeles, Kenneth Anger's "Hollywood Babylon" and its rumors about Valentino, "The Hunger," Howard Hughes, and "Village of the Damned" to create a unique mélange. 

The show uses music, some of it incredibly famous, to add to the effect. When one watches "AHS," one seems to experience a cross-section of American life. Music supervisors P.J. Bloom and Amanda Krieg Thomas use indie artists like Mirah, classics like Stevie Nicks' "Rhiannon," and camp classics like "The Name Game." However, something only horror fans may notice is how often the show borrows from the soundtracks of other horror films.

AHS appropriates the scores of classic horror

"American Horror Story" has sampled the soundtracks of such horror classics as "Carrie," "Psycho," and "Candyman." One redditor noticed that the "Carrie" soundtrack appears in "Asylum," when Lana interviews Sister Jude. "Hotel" apes "The Hunger" with its use of Bauhaus' "Bela Lugosi's Dead." "Murder House" uses a lot of classic horror music, including "Temptation" from "Psycho" and the theme to "What Lies Beneath." IMDb lists the pilot as featuring the soundtracks from three horror movies, one spooky TV show, and "Dora the Explorer." Terrifying.

One of the most iconic moments in "AHS" Season 1 is the flashback to Tate's killing spree. The creative team decided to score that moment with "Twisted Nerve," the theme to a film of the same name that was also used in Quentin Tarantino's "Kill Bill." Tarantino also uses the soundtracks of other movies in his work, scoring much of "Inglourious Basterds" to the spaghetti western tones of composers like Ennio Morricone. We're suddenly very curious about a collaboration between "AHS" and Tarantino.