Interview by Paul Salfen
What do “Teenage Dream”, “Halo”, “I Don’t Feel Like Dancin’”, “Bang Bang Bang”, “Levitating”, “SOS”, “Dynamite” and “Dark Horse” all have in common? They were all written by members of the Halloween obsessed spooky hitmaker collective LVCRFT.
LVCRFT is the sinister spawn of spooky-obsessed hitmakers, responsible for crafting iconic records for the likes of Beyoncé, Rihanna, Katy Perry, Mark Ronson, Dua Lipa, Lizzo and more. When they aren’t writing smashes for the living, they are creating a year-round supply of hook- filled ghoulish pop bops to shake and wake the dead and undead, alike. With their mantra ‘Spooky Never Sleeps’, their music showcases the power of spooky to lift the spirits all year long. Their 2019 spooky debut, This Is Halloween Volume 1, was touted by GQ as “a clear ancestor of iconic Halloween hits like ‘The Monster Mash’ & ‘Thriller!’” and Paper Magazine said of their 2020 album, The Sequel, “This musical coven of Hitmakers wrote a perfect Halloween album.” The excitement around the project has yielded paranormal partnerships with Netflix, most notably for their Chilling Adventures of Sabrina Season 3 and Adam Sandler’s Hubie Halloween, and Freeform, crafting the theme song to the network’s annual 31 Nights of Halloween, two years running. 2021’s album, The Return, also witchcrafted a national partnership with Spirit Halloween stores, including the filming of the first official LVCRFT music video, shot in concert with Spirit, and LVCRFT’s very own Halloween-themed radio show on SiriusXM’s Volume West with Lyndsey Parker and AFI’s Davey Havock.
Now, LVCRFT & Christopher Young present… SCREAM WARRIORS
They really tried to create a listening experience that was groundbreaking and pushed the boundaries of an audio/visual listening experience. So, this year they partnered with legendary horror film composer Christopher Young (Hellraiser, Nightmare On Elm Street 2, Sinister, Drag Me To Hell, Exorcism Of Emily Rose and more). They wrote the music and then collaborated with Christopher and his team to orchestrate and sound design a universe of sonics that fully support the album’s story narrative – before, after, in between, and even within the songs.
Think of the album this year as a soundtrack to an album that hasn’t been made…YET!!!
MNDR is Amanda Warner, a grammy-winning electro-pop artist, songwriter, and record producer who has been on the microphone and behind the scenes reshaping pop music over the past 10 years. After a smash collaboration with Mark Ronson & Q-Tip on the 2010 hit “Bang Bang Bang,” MNDR signed to Ultra Records and released her debut album, Feed Me Diamonds, in 2012. She performed a special stripped-down version of the title track on the Late Show With David Letterman, and the critically acclaimed album was named one of the Top 10 pop albums of the year by Spin Magazine.
Demand for MNDR’s songwriting and production necessitated a move from New York to Los Angeles in between tours for Feed Me Diamonds. Her list of writing and production credits includes Santigold, Kylie Minogue, Rita Ora, Calvin Harris, Charli XCX, AlunaGeorge, Carly Rae Jepsen and Christian Leave amongst others and she co-wrote the late SOPHIE and Charli XCX single “Vroom Vroom” and Martin Solveig’s global hit“All Stars.” In 2017, MNDR contributed vocals and writing to Flume’s Grammy winning album Skin, and kept up her furious pace of features and remixes, appearing on singles with Jai Wolf (“Like It’s Over”), Oliver! (“Chemicals”), TOKiMONSTA (“Go With It”), Louis The Child (“Big Love”), and RAC (“Let Go”). MNDR released her sophomore album Hell To Be You Baby late Spring 2021 to critical acclaim. Songs off the album are currently featured in FIFA 2019, The L Word, and the title track off of the album is featured in the Google 6 Pixel adverts across all media platforms. She also dropped her first Music NFT with RAC on Sound.xyz called Ether which sold out in seconds.
In addition, MNDR still found time to tour with Duran Duran, standing in for keyboardist Nick Rhodes during part of the band’s “Paper Gods” tour.
In 2017, MNDR and Scissor Sisters released “SWERLK” to raise money for the community affected by the Pulse nightclub tragedy in Orlando. “SWERLK” has raised over $60,000 for the Contigo Fund, which emerged from the Pulse tragedy and offers financial support to organizations working to heal, educate and empower LGBTQ and Latinx individuals, immigrants and people of color, as well as those working to end all forms of bigotry in Central Florida.
In addition to producing, and writing for other artists, MNDR’s passion and mission has been to build equity for Non-male and LGBTQIA+ creatives in the music making process. She actively mentors LGBTQIA and non-male producers/writers which has led her to partner with Splice to create MNDR Diamonds on Splice Discord; a decentralized non-male and LGBTQIA+ community created mixtape initiative conceived to\ nurture and create a new online culture for the next generation of non-male and LGBTQIA+ music creatives.