This month we will witness Laurie Strode facing off with her demented brother and real-life bogeyman, Michael Myers, one final time. Throughout the not always consistent franchise (Season of the Witch easily ranks as the most bizarre of entries) we've witnessed Myers systematically brutalize anyone standing between him and Strode and now director David Gordon Greene is bringing the two back to Haddonfield to settle unfinished business.

Halloween is a direct sequel to the original, taking place 40 years later, and (thankfully) disregarding the continuity of the previous sequels (although Part II wasn't exactly bad). John Carpenter--who hasn't directed a film in years--returns to compose the film's score, and listening to it from start to finish, it's pretty clear we're in for an unsettling ride.

If you aren't that familiar with some of Carpenter's beloved cult classics like Assault on Precinct 13, The Thing, Christine, or Big Trouble in Little China (and you really should be) or not that familiar with his work in general, chances are you still know Halloween. It's the 1978 low-budget classic responsible for kicking off the modern slasher film genre and spawning literally hundreds of pale imitations. Which means you probably know its instantly recognizable theme consisting of 5/4 twinkling keyboards and ominous pianos.

So you wouldn't be wrong in arguing that a piece of music iconic in its own right doesn't exactly need to be tinkered with, and you're probably right. But 'Halloween Theme' alone stands as one of those rare instances when a composer manages to strike a perfect balance between adapting and refurbishing a piece of music while preserving its original intent at the same time.

Alongside his collaborators from his three recent solo albums, son Cody Carpenter and stepson Daniel Davies, they strip the entire thing down to its basic structure and rebuild it with menacing guitars, slabs of tense keyboards, and a propulsive beat. The result is something more intense and downright disturbing than the original.

Fittingly, it sets the tone for the rest of the score which is darker and more sinister than the first one: With a steadily marching piano, synths oozing in from the background and hovering eerie keyboards, 'Prison Montage' gets off to a disquieting start. A scraping sound comes creeping in, gradually growing in intensity and notching up already growing feelings of uneasiness before the whole thing drops out.

Like some of his best scenes, it's an example of how Carpenter uses minimalism as a means of getting the most in terms of coaxing tension and terror. 'Michael Kills Again' is another example. A deceptively still opening of lurking strings gives off a false sense of security that quickly gives way to climbing dread which intensifies until an urgent beat comes barrelling out of nowhere giving way to lunging guitars that unleash a virtual hellscape. Even without knowing which scene it pertains to, you already have a good idea of what's happening and it's to assume it's nothing pleasant.

'Say Something' captures all of the horrors of knowing something wholly evil is stalking from just beyond the shadows and is only moments away from unleashing itself on you, which makes 'Allyson Discovered' devastating in how comparatively frail and gentle it is.

A slow trickling piano refrain and simple strings bring a rare moment of calm as a synth softly sighs from behind mournful keys before gently dissolving, giving off lingering vulnerability and sadness of the moment it's aiming to capture.

There's a reason Carpenter is rightfully called "the Master of Horror" and even if his films haven't always been consistent, the music he's composed for them almost always has been. It never fails to capture the imagination of its listener and it sounds both immediately familiar and yet not quite like anything else.

How and where Halloween ranks in his long catalog as a composer is up to Carpenter fanatics to decide, but for my money, it proves itself just to be just as consistent and wildly inventive as anything else he has done, painting with broad strokes and bringing to life its surroundings. Then again you really don't have much time to worry about any of those things when you're too busy finding yourself glancing over your shoulder at the slightest noise.