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Midnight Syndicate - Instrumental Horror Music - Haunting Gothic Symphonies - Halloween Music - Roleplaying Game Soundtracks - Haunted House Atmosphere

   

For over two decades, composers Edward Douglas and Gavin Goszka have been known as Midnight Syndicate, creating symphonic soundtracks to imaginary films that facilitate a transcendental and adventurous escape into the secret dimensions of the mind’s eye. To many of their fans, they are Gothic music pioneers brewing a signature blend of orchestral horror music and movie-style sound effects. To others, they remain the first “haunted house band” that forever changed the Halloween music genre and became a staple of the October holiday season. Still others know them as the duo that created the first official soundtrack to the legendary Dungeons & Dragons game trailblazing a new era for the use of music in the role-playing game industry. Reminiscent of sweeping, complex masterpieces by artists such as James Horner, Danny Elfman, Black Sabbath, and King Diamond, their critically-acclaimed music has been featured as a part of films, television shows, and video games as well as in countless haunted attractions, amusement parks, and theatrical productions worldwide.

Since the end of the 90s, Midnight Syndicate’s music has been integral to setting a powerful mood at top-rated haunted attractions and amusement parks as well as at costume shops, Halloween events, and themed-productions from Siberia and Hong Kong, to Europe and the United States. In 2005, industry expert Leonard Pickel estimated that 75-90% of the attractions in the haunted house industry owned at least one Midnight Syndicate CD. In September, 2009, AOL released the Top 10 Best Halloween Music CDs of all time according to AOL/CBS Radio listeners. Three of the ten listed were Midnight Syndicate discs, which ranked lower only than Danny Elfman’s Nightmare Before Christmas and John Carpenter’s Halloween soundtracks. In 2015, their album Out of the Darkness was named as one of the 50 Essential Horror Albums – Discs that Created, Evolved, or Defined Genre Music Over the Decades by the venerable horror publication, Rue Morgue Magazine. The band’s music has also been used at Hugh Hefner’s Halloween parties, on Barbara Walters’ specials, at Universal Studio’s Halloween Horror Nights as well as on Monday Night Football and by artists Insane Clown Posse, Three Six Mafia, Twiztid, and the Misfits.

Founder Douglas’ passion for making music was ignited when he listened to records by The Beatles on his kid-sized turntable and dreamed of composing epic scores like John Williams’ Star Wars, Superman and Raiders of the Lost Ark. Both he and Goszka grew up watching classic black and white horror films, listening to Vincent Price reading the tales of Edgar Allan Poe and playing Dungeons & Dragons. They continued to fall in love with the world of horror, fantasy and the supernatural as they developed their own artistry: Douglas played piano and bass guitar, performing in rock bands and scoring student horror films in college while Goszka played keyboard in rock bands and went on to study classical composition and percussion in college. They eventually discovered ways to explore fantasy in literature, film, and art through music.

The Dead Matter (2010) movie posterIn 1995, Douglas directed and wrote his first full-length horror film score to a thriller called The Dead Matter (1995), which helped set the principles of Midnight Syndicate in motion. He would later direct and score a remake of that film alongside Robert Kurtzman (From Dusk Till Dawn, co-founder, KNB FX) and Gary Jones (Xena, Boogeyman 3) in 2010. However, in 1997, Douglas’ main focus was putting together the first Midnight Syndicate album. The goal was to provide a collection of “soundtracks to imaginary films.” This collection presented many different narratives through a variety of genres, including classical, New Age and rock and was punctuated by sound effects. For the sophomore release, Born of the Night, Douglas decided to focus on a Midnight Syndicate album that would specifically appeal to gothic music fans, Halloween enthusiasts, and role-playing gamers. It was at this time that he decided to partner with compelling solo artist Goszka, whom he had known since 1994.

Edward Douglas and Gavin Goszka Band Photo from 2013
Edward Douglas and Gavin Goszka of Midnight Syndicate (2012)

Midnight Syndicate released many studio albums between 1997 and 2005, among them Midnight Syndicate, Born of the Night, Realm of Shadows, Gates of Delirium, Vampyre: Symphonies from the Crypt and the multi award-winning The 13th Hour. They teamed up with Hasbro and Wizards of the Coast in 2003 to produce the first official soundtrack to the classic Dungeons and Dragons role-playing game. In 2008, Douglas’ and Goszka’s tenth studio album, The Dead Matter: Cemetery Gates came out as a preview to the 2010 remake of The Dead Matter film. That same year, Midnight Syndicate put together their first music video, a live performance of the song Dark Legacy, produced by Robert Kurtzman’s Creature Crew and Screamline Studios and filmed in the haunted historic Phantasy Theatre in Lakewood, Ohio. The band’s fourteenth studio album, Carnival Arcane (2011) was based on research into turn-of-the-20th-Century carnivals as well as the writings of Ray Bradbury and plays like a self-contained, vivid musical film. The disc garnered rave reviews from pressand won Best Horror CD/Soundtrack at the 10th Annual Rondo Hatton Awards.

Midnight Syndicate's "Monsters of Legend" album
“Monsters of Legend” (2013)

In 2013, the band released gothic music vocalist Destini Beard’s A Time Forgotten, the follow-up to The Dark Masquerade, her first collaboration with Douglas and Goszka and completed the score to the grindhouse thriller Axe Giant: The Wrath of Paul Bunyan. In summer of that year, Midnight Syndicate released the soundtrack to that film along with Monsters of Legend, a tribute to the classic Universal, Hammer and Euro horror films that gave birth to horror cinema. Featuring cover art showcasing original Universal Monster images with an epic sound to match, the disc has immediately become one of, if not the band’s most critically-acclaimed album to date. In addition to cracking FEARnet’s Top 10 Horror CDs of 2013, in May of 2014, the album won Best CD honors in the 12th Annual Rondo Hatton Classic Horror Awards marking the band’s second such honor. Visit the Midnight Syndicate Store to see and hear more!

After seventeen years, fourteen studio albums, three soundtracks, and a motion picture, Midnight Syndicate announced that they were teaming up with the world famous amusement park, Cedar Point, to launch their first live performances. Midnight Syndicate Live! Legacy of Shadows, a multimedia horror-themed concert blending live music, theatre, and film debuted at Cedar Point’s 18th annual HalloWeekends event. Before the shows, Charles Bradshaw, Corporate V.P. of Entertainment for Cedar Fair was quoted saying, “Working with these industry leading music producers on a live show is an exciting prospect. The final product is going to amaze.” And amaze it did. Upon its debut, the show began breaking attendance records while being called “top-notch and ambitious,” “brilliant and artistically creative,” and “a must see” by audiences and press alike. “The success of the inaugural run of Midnight Syndicate Live! has ensured that live Midnight Syndicate shows will be a permanent part of our plans going forward,” said Edward Douglas.

Midnight Syndicate Live! 2014
Midnight Syndicate Live! 2014

In September of 2015, Midnight Syndicate’s Out of the Darkness album was included in Rue Morgue Magazine’s 50 Essential Horror Albums – Discs that Created, Evolved, or Defined Genre Music Over the Decades. That same month, Midnight Syndicate released Christmas: A Ghostly Gathering. The album featured the band’s unique twist on classic holiday carols blended with new and original material. “Our goal was to treat each song in a way that would merge familiarity with originality,” said Gavin Goszka. “There are definitely recognizable elements, but plenty of additional original material as well. It also incorporates the widest instrument palette we’ve used to date and represents what we consider to be the most varied collection of songs we’ve ever released. There are serenely beautiful moments here alongside more intense, darker tracks, and the end result is a thoroughly compelling and involving listening experience.” “With so many Christmas-themed albums out there, we wanted to make this collection uniquely our own,” added Edward Douglas. “I think we were able to do that.” Since its release, the album has received universal critical acclaim.

zombiesprIn April of 2016, the band announced that they would be creating the first official soundtrack to the immensely popular zombie apocalypse-themed board game, Zombies!!!. “I’m a big fan of Zombies!!!,” said Edward Douglas. “With the game celebrating its 15th anniversary in 2016, it seemed like the perfect time to undertake this project. We’re working closely with the Twilight team to create something that really enhances their players’ gaming experience. I think album will also resonate with our fans in the Halloween and haunted house industries.” “Musically, it will be interesting to work in a modern setting,” added Gavin Goszka. “Most of our albums have been set in the Victorian and early 20th century, so this will definitely be something different and exciting for us and our fans.” In addition to releasing the Zombies!!! soundtrack in September of 2016, the band also reissued their gothic instrumental classic, Realm of Shadows. Raven’s Hollow: Realm of Shadows Reissue features the original recordings with a new introductory track and a previously unreleased bonus track from the original recording sessions.

In 2017, Midnight Syndicate celebrated their 20th anniversary with a return to Cedar Point’s HalloWeekends for another wildly successful incarnation of their Midnight Syndicate Live! show.  Their follow up production, 2018’s Midnight Syndicate: Conspiracy of Shadows featured some of their most involved storytelling as they continued their string of successful productions.  The following year, the band upped the ante for their third consecutive season at the park. “Our first three HalloWeekends shows formed a loose trilogy, with many common elements tying them together,” explained Gavin Goszka. “Now that the trilogy has reached its conclusion, we wanted to take things in a bit of a new direction.” “The new show has a little something for everyone,” added Edward Douglas. “I think fans of ‘The Twilight Zone’ series in particular are really going to enjoy it.” As was the case with the previous shows, Midnight Syndicate Live! 2019 was a huge success, showcasing some the show’s most advanced production elements to date.

In June of 2020, the band announced that it had begun work on a new album. This was in addition to several other Midnight Syndicate projects that are already underway and will be announced in the coming months.

Julia Rogers

 

Midnight Syndicate (1997) album art
Born of the Night album artwork
Original Realm of Shadows artwork
Gates of Delirium (2001) album art
Halloween Music - Midnight Syndicate's "Vampyre" album 2002
Dungeons & Dragons (2003) Official Roleplaying Soundtrack by Midnight Syndicate album artwork
The 13th Hour album by Midnight Syndicate
Out of the Darkness: Retrospective 1994-1999 by Midnight Syndicate
The Rage Original Motion Picture Soundtrack album by Midnight Syndicate, composed by Edward Douglas
The Dead Matter Cemetery Gates album by Midnight Syndicate
The Dark Masquerade EP by Destini Beard with Midnight Syndicate
Halloween Music Collection album by Midnight Syndicate
The Dead Matter Original Motion Picture Soundtrack album by Midnight Syndicate
Dark Carnival Music - Midnight Syndicate's "Carnival Arcane" album cover
A Time Forgotten (2012) album art
Monsters of Legend (2013) album art
Axe Giant: The Wrath of Paul Bunyan (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack) (2013) album art
Christmas: A Ghostly Gathering (2015) album art
Raven's Hollow: Realm of Shadows Reissue by Midnight Syndicate
Zombies Board Game Soundtrack by Midnight Syndicate

Live Shows

Midnight Syndicate Live! 2014 logo
Midnight Syndicate Live! 2017 logo
Midnight Syndicate Live! 2018 logo
Midnight Syndicate Live! 2019 logo

Midnight Syndicate Halloween Music – Gothic Fantasy Horror Soundtracks
Linfaldia Records (BMI), a division of Entity Productions, Inc.

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9 hours ago

Midnight Syndicate

Check out a brand new interview with Ed and Gavin on Vamp Jenn's Corner - jennvasquez.com/2020/08/06/spotlight-on-midnight-syndicate-masters-of-gothic-melodies/ ... See MoreSee Less

Check out a brand new interview with Ed and Gavin on Vamp Jenns Corner - https://jennvasquez.com/2020/08/06/spotlight-on-midnight-syndicate-masters-of-gothic-melodies/

Comment on Facebook Check out a brand ...

We can't wait to find out what surprises you have in store for us. For sure, it will be worth the wait. Best of luck with the new album. looking forward to the new show next year as well. Take care guys, we miss you.

No offense to my favorite gruesome twosome, but this wasn’t even in my facebook feed. It was in Liz’s and I had to go directly to your facebook page to even see it. I hate facebook and their crappy algorithms! May explain if other fans aren’t responding to this news.

In desperate need of a new MS album!

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ABOUT MIDNIGHT SYNDICATE

For over two decades, composers Edward Douglas and Gavin Goszka have been known as Midnight Syndicate, creating symphonic soundtracks to imaginary films that facilitate a transcendental and adventurous escape into the secret dimensions of the mind’s eye. To many of their fans, they are horror music pioneers brewing a signature blend of instrumental orchestral gothic music and movie-style sound effects. To others, they remain the first “haunted house band” that forever changed the Halloween music genre and became a staple of the October holiday season.  Still others, know them for their contributions to the use of music in the roleplaying and board game industries.

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