Paranoia squared – The Tenant and Kafka

The Tenant movie coverThe first time I saw the movie The Tenant I was in a state of hyper-paranoia for hours afterwards…I was ready for bizarre and terrible things to happen to me in real life at any moment 😀 Now that I’ve recovered, when I watch it I snicker with creepy glee…this movie is an all-time favorite of mine and if you like dark and creepy stuff, you can’t beat this bizarre trip through one man’s creeped-out craziness. A man moves into an old apartment building in France where the previous tenant has committed suicide. Strange occurrences plague his creepy stay there, and he becomes convinced the other occupants are conspiring against him in a bizarre fiendish plot.

Have you seen the Ninth Gate, also by Polanski? Remember that scene with the wheelchair and fire and stuff? In the Tenant, half the damn movie is psycho like that! Polanski, you rool.

Kafka movie cover
Kafka, the 1991 movie starring Jeremy Irons and directed by Steven Soderbergh, is waiting for you at the top of the elevator shaft if you crave more paranoia. Set in Prague in the 20’s, it’s the epitome of dark and creepy, with a bit o’ black comedy thrown in for good measure. I love the dialogue, setting, acting, and pretty much everything else about it. Walking over wet cobblestones in dark Prague, with the shadowy castle looming above…a conspiracy of black intentions hang around you as you wend your way through the old graveyard…that’s Kafka. The score is wonderful and perfectly complements and accentuates the dark and creepy feel of the movie. I don’t think the DVD is out in the U.S. yet even though it’s many years old (wtf), but I was able to score a copy of a Japan release on eBay that is in English and works on US DVD players (“region-free”). Watch this and then paint a twisted and shadowy city with unseen villains skulking through the maze-like streets.

The Well – A dark and creepy Lovecraft-inspired song

The Well III oil painting

Dreams of darkness calling, falling through the stars…Lovecraftian, I reckon. This, my friends, is a spooky song called The Well. Inspired by Bauhaus, Lovecraft, Tiamat, Danielle Dax, 45 Grave, and Oingo Boingo :)

Link: The Well (MP3)

Yes, this song just so happens to be written and performed by yours truly. I did the painting for the song too…go to my painting blog for the full image and info about the painting.

Lyrics:

[creepy sounds of impending doom]

winter wind is blowing, throwing fallen leaves
through the graves it’s wending, lending chills to all

dreams of darkness calling, falling through the stars
lurking silence staring, glaring from the well

the night around is twisting, like water swirling round
now it’s reaching upwards, groping through the ground

[disturbing sounds of madness and chaos]

Written, performed, recorded etc by Airn LeBus (c) 2007.

Halloween, tea, and scones

Halloween!? I know it’s May, but it’s never too early to start planning or it’s even better if every day is a little mini-Halloween…although it can be tough when it’s 91 degrees outside. You can’t bake scones and drink hott tea when it’s like that. Tea may not seem very creepy by itself, but it’s the preferred drink of creeps everywhere. I just wanted to remind you.

My favorite tea right now is Pickwick English Tea Blend…I also love their Perzik peach tea but it’s been difficult to find lately. For the scones I get Sticky Fingers Bakeries scone mix from Cost Plus World Market and bake up a scone right before I eat it, I love that stuff ’cause you just need to add water and they are delish. If you make em make sure you don’t add too much water, they are best with just a tiny bit of water so the dough is super thick…pop in the oven and about 15 minutes later you have a piping hot scone and can now enjoy Brother Cadfael or Sherlock Holmes with a scruptious scone and a perfect Pickwick tea. I like it when the scone is fully slathered with butter and covered in jam. I also was really into that clotted cream stuff for a while but the last few batches tasted a little funky so I am back to butter for a bit :) If you’ve never had it, it’s like a cross between whipped cream and butter…yuuuuum!

On Stranger Tides

On Stranger Tides

Oooh, pirates, zombies, and voodoo: On Stranger Tides by Tim Powers. Creepy? Sometimes. Inspirational? Yes, you may go out and commandeer a passing car in the name of Blackbeard, or turn your neighbor into a zombie to do your nefarious bidding. Overall it’s hard to completely explain how awesome this book is…if you have read other books by Tim Powers you probably understand. There’s voodoo, as mentioned, as well as zombie action, a bit of swashbuckling, creepy trips up strange rivers…wait a sec, some of the cover text will explain what you are in for far better than my ramblings:

A hunt for unearthly spirits with the aid of a mummified two-headed dog. A journey through the Florida swamps in search of the Fountain of Youth. A battle at sea with the Royal English Navy. An encounter with sunken ships crewed by zombies.

‘Nuff said.

All that pirate zombie stuff got me excited – and now I must link to The World Of Monkey Island! Say hi to LeChuck for me.

Danielle Dax

danielle daxA recipe for Danielle Dax: Take some country-western-goth, add a serving of glam rock, a pinch of witchy-death-metal, stir in some pop, and serve in the graveyard on a cold but sunny day.

Sterling examples of her fine musical wares:

Pariah: Super-spooky…Baron Samedi and walking sick walking the town, sung in an uber-creepy low hexen-voice.

16 Candles: A wonderfully woeful tale of a woman’s futile wait for her absent, war-claimed love as rivers run red and cannons roar.

Bad Miss M: Singing “We’ll all have a party when you are gone…desecrate your grave and sing this song” with a western drawl and cheery slide guitar…this can only be Dax.

Where the Flies Are: Just look at the title. I love her lyrics…”My mind’s on fire / Federation of the dead ride in / To blast the chains free / Between two roaring worlds”.

(lyrics are from memory and might be totally wrong :) I tried to look them up on the web but didn’t find ’em…we must need more Dax fans)

Welcome to Dark and Creepy

Spoooky, it’s the new Dark and Creepy site!

I just converted this site to a blog format and will actually be adding some content to it now, so stand by while I change stuff around.

This site is a place for me to point you in the direction of neat stuff, generally of a kinda dark and creepy nature. Think Tim Burton or Lovecraft or The Munsters or City of Lost Children…like that. Not so much Marilyn Manson or Texas Chainsaw Massacre…just kinda Dark and Creepy, like an October moonlit glade with some glowing eyes lurking ahead as opposed to a demented maniac chasing you down a dark alley. You get the point.

If you wanna guest post about something cool, or have something creepy and awesome I should post about, let me know!

Here’s the kinda stuff I thought of when I started this site:

  • dark and creepy pictures and art
  • resources for creaky freeps
  • maybe later a messageboard / forum
  • mentioning tea a lot (though that’s not really dark and creepy, eh? but i swear tea can make you 10 times as creepy, because you will have more energy)
  • dreams of darkness calling, falling through the stars
  • dark and creepy films like the tenant / kafka / city of lost children
  • especially creepy bands like 45 grave and danielle dax and strawberry switchblade and bauhaus and elfman / boingo / mystic knights
  • creepy spooky upcoming happenings
  • a section that accepts article submissions or artwork / music
  • awesome books that are dark and or creepy
  • an unhealthy fixation with h.p. lovecraft
  • maybe a couple computer game reviews if i am feeling particularly nerdy
  • tentacles sliding out of nocturnal wells to tickle your fancy
  • some of my own art and music because i am a creepy person
  • awkward steps in the night…worms, they slide away in fright
P.S. You can find me on myspace at myspace.com/airnlebus, my painting blog is at chromaticblack.com and my older site with stained glass and music and stuff is at spectralcreations.com.