In the unlikely scenario that AMC’s Walking Dead does come true and zombies start to wander the earth in search of human flesh, certain skill sets will be in demand. Doctors, marksmen, and foragers will certainly be valued, but what about musicians? When the zombies destroy all power sources and your iPod runs out of battery, what will be the source of music? Live performances, of course. So it helps that these select artists would have no problem fending off hordes of zombies, a feat they would likely celebrate with a rousing set that inspires all fellow zombie hunters an earshot away, as long as the zombies don’t hear.
It would be shocking if Rob Zombie did not survive a zombie apocalypse. He has spent so much time writing about zombie-like insanity in his songs and screenplays that his preparation for an impending zombie takeover should be taken for granted. While traditional zombies do not appear in his films, the family of psychopathic killers in House of 1000 Corpses and Devil’s Rejects closely resemble the cold-blooded and torturous pursuits of zombies. Whether he’s being chased by a psychopathic human or a bloodthirsty zombie, Rob Zombie has probably outlined all the murderous scenarios by now. He’s well prepared.
While Ozzy doesn’t have as much experience with depicting zombies as Rob Zombie, the former Black Sabbath frontman arguably does the best zombie impersonation out of all musicians. And to his benefit, it’s how he acts 24/7. His lifeless gaze, incoherent mumbles, and gothic haven’t-slept-in-a-week appearance makes it hard to differentiate him from Walking Dead extras. Ozzy also has experience biting the heads off of bats, so it’s doubtful he would flinch if food rations forced him to do the same during the apocalypse. He has survived every rock ‘n’ roll temptation in the book. Would zombies really be Ozzy Osbourne’s demise? Doubtful.
The legendary British heavy-metal group has been hanging out with a zombie for years. Their official mascot, Eddie the Head, is a cartoon — but he’s far from cartoonish. His face is a skull, and his body is skin and bones. But man, can he rock hard. Eddie has been a fixture at all of Iron Maiden’s shows, and on their album covers as well. He’s a personal trademark for the group, reminding listeners that the music of Iron Maiden is brash and destructive, with an extra kick that may even awake the undead. Eddie’s appearance has changed throughout the years, unlike a zombie, but his appearance reminds very much of the undead.
The experimental electronic works of Aphex Twin doesn’t compare to the raucous metal of the previous groups, but Richard James’ experience with lifeless evil inhabiting the bodies of humans is pointed out in the famous music video for “Come to Daddy”. Tension and anxiety are rampant throughout the video, as menacing figures in little-girl bodies and ugly-men masks run loose under grey skies and industrial buildings. They essentially act like zombies with masks on, as a poor old woman and her dog become terrified victims of the unknown. James and director Chris Cunningham surely have to be prepared for the zombie apocalypse if their minds were able to stir up such a deeply affecting video.
Send More Paramedics
Largely unknown outside of hardcore punk circles, Send More Paramedics are one of few bands with a following to have their music revolve entirely around zombies. Notable releases included 2002’s A Feast for the Fallen and 2005’s Tales Told by Dead Men. Send More Paramedics called their fusion of punk and metal “Zombiecore”, with their name being a reference to the classic 1985 zombie film Return of the Living Dead. They announced their breakup in 2007 by beginning with the statement “Dear Mortals,” as well. It seems Send More Paramedics were fairly convinced all their members were zombies, which is all the reason more their experience would come in handy during an apocalypse by the undead.
With all these serious metal groups surviving the zombie apocalypse, there needs to be room for some humor and hip-hop as well. The inventive Aesop Rock might just be zany enough to outlive the zombies, especially if he handles them similarly to his video for 2007 single “Coffee”. Instead of running away from them, Ian Bavitz (Aesop Rock) seemed more intent on helping them rap. Hey, you never know… quality hip-hop might be the zombies’ only weakness.
Tupac and Elvis Presley
If these supposedly dead musicians faked their deaths, it’s hard to believe that zombies would find them. After all, there aren’t many things more ravenous than the tabloid media. If they can’t find something, chances are zombies wouldn’t either.