Tuesday, 30 July 2013

Music & Reviews: Welcome to the Horror Show by Sam Haynes

Track Listing:
1. All Hallows
2. Ghost House
3. Shadows
4. Scarecrows
5. Zombie
6. Doll House
7. Ghost Train
8. Midnight
9. Seance
10. 31-13
11. The Dark
12. Halloween Night
13. Midnight at the Funhouse
14. Endless Nightmare
15. Ghost House (Fettdog remix)
16. Scarecrows (Cheekyboy Dub)
17. Witching Hour
18. Spirit Box

Welcome to the Horror Show, the second album from Sam Haynes, is a collection of tracks that were created to be used in Halloween haunts and on horror movie soundtracks. There are sixteen individual pieces, plus two remixes; Fettdog's more aggressive remix of Ghost House and Cheekyboy's darker take on Scarecrows.

The album is very atmospheric throughout and tracks such as Ghost House, Spirit Box, Doll House, Midnight and 31-13 are particularly ominous and would be perfect for haunts and horror movies. There are, however, some more up tempo, danceable and almost "cute" tracks like Zombie, Halloween Night, Ghost Train, and Witching Hour, which would be great for Halloween parties and spooky fairgrounds.

While the influences of 70's, 80's and 90's horror soundtracks - everything from John Carpenter's Halloween and Christine scores to the Phantasm and Suspiria soundtracks by Fred Myrow/Malcolm Seagrave and Goblin respectively -  are overt, Sam Haynes manage to mix in their own brand of creepy to Welcome to the Horror Show as well. Many of the tracks have a familiar feel to them, but are simultaneously unique. 

Overall, Welcome to the Horror Show is an enjoyable and creepy album, with a great balance between horror-influenced scares and mischievous fun. It's definitely one for those with a love for movie scores and Halloween haunts.

Sam Haynes are giving away 5 free digital copies of Welcome to the Horror Show and all you have to do to win one is head over to their Facebook page and hit the "Like" button! Winners will be chosen at random on August 13th, 2013.


Thursday, 25 July 2013

Books & Reviews: A Complete Guide to Special Effects Makeup: Conceptual Creations by Japanese Makeup Artists

I received A Complete Guide to Special Effects Makeup... as a present last year and I'm very grateful!
Acclaimed as the best book ever published on the subject, A Complete Guide to Special Effects Makeup covers everything from basic facial makeup styles, simple scars and gashes, to masks, molds and cast-making; everything you need to know to create vampires, zombies and other fantastical characters.  
Featuring step-by-step instructions, with hundreds of color photos, from makeup artist professionals who have worked on films such as Alien vs Predator and Land of the Dead
Whether you are a beginner preparing for a Halloween party, or a cosplayer interested in learning more complex techniques, this is the definitive guide.

"Cattleya" by Manabu Namikawa
Photo: Takuyuki Saito; Model: Marie
Beauty Make-up: Keizo
The first thing that hits you when you begin the book is the well-lit, absolutely stunning photographs of each make-up piece. They really give a sense of just how impressive these looks would be in person, as well as showing enough close-ups to see all the details.

"FBI Agent from Hell" by TOMO
It might seem doubtful that there are "hundreds of color photos" included in this collection, but once you reach the first project tutorial page, it becomes a lot more plausible. Every look shown also has a step-by-step tutorial, complete with concept drawings/ideas, tools needed, application techniques and, except in the case of full-face masks, photographs of the models before, after, and during the transformation process.

"Vampire Queen" by Akiteru Nakada & M.E.U.
There are four chapters in the book: 01: Basic Makeup and Cuts, Gashes & Scars; 02: Masks; 03: Making Molds; 04: Practical Application. In addition to providing how-to guides for the nine looks featured at the beginning of the book, there are also various guides for smaller, less time-consuming/complicated projects throughout. The projects include everything from basic beauty makeup and facial lacerations to accessory sculpting and mold making, all of which are very clear and easy to understand. There's also a "Special Effects Makeup Glossary" included at the end, which means that even complete novices will have no trouble understanding the terminology.

When the photographs finish, there is then an insightful interview with professional SFX makeup artist Yuuchi Matsui (Ringu, Ichi the Killer, The Happiness of the Katakuris, Pulse etc.) and the very last page includes short profiles of each of the makeup artists featured throughout the book.

"Executioner's Mask" by Keizo
Overall, this was a fantastic read and I would highly recommend it to anyone with an interest in SFX makeup!

"Goth & Loli Zombies" by Akiteru Nakada & M.E.U.
Photo: Takuyuki Saito
Models: Kancho & Mari

"Silene" by Manabu Namikawa

"Bud" by TOMO
Photo: Yosuke Komatsu Model: Marie
Beauty Make-up: Keizo
Costume: Yuta Okuyama & TOMO

Music & Reviews: Vacant Tombs & Full Moons by Tommy Creep

Track Listing:

1. Death Beach
2. More Zombie Than Zombie
3. Pull The Switch!
4. Electronic Voice Phenomena
5. The Gravediggers
6. Haunted House Party
7. The Cemetery (Creepy VIP)
8. Castle Dracula
9. The Cemetery (Original Mix, with Ghoulshow)
10. More Zombie Than Zombie (VIP)
11. Stiff Wagon

Label: Graveyard Calling

Release Date: 29th July, 2013

Vacant Tombs and Full Moons is the new album by Tommy Creep, being released through UK-based label Graveyard Calling Horror Records on July 29th, both in digital formats (via BandCamp) and on limited edition cassette tapes. The release consists of 11 horror EDM (electronic dance music) tracks, including The Cemetery (Original Mix), a collaboration with fellow Graveyard Calling artist, Ghoulshow. 

The album opens with the up-tempo EDM track Death Beach, which features samples from 1960's b-movie The Beach Girls and the Monster for vocals. The song - much like the movie it samples - has a fun, somewhat comical feel, with a spooky electronic organ being used to create a 60's beach vibe. 

From there, the album takes a darker tone with great use of samples from classic horrors and sci fis, such as The Day the Earth Stood Still, Atom-Age Vampire, The Corpse Vanishes and The Body Snatcher, among others. Sometimes the samples can be a little too long, and there are sometimes too many within one track. However, the samples create some interestingly creepy music; especially when intertwined with the glockenspiel, harpsichord and theremin synth melodies, and set to bass saws, occasional screams, squelches, evil laughs and all sorts of other horror sound effects.

If you're a fan of classic horror/sci-fi b-movies and EDM, you'll love this album and even if you don't, give Vacant Tombs and Full Moons a listen -  you might just change your mind!


Monday, 22 July 2013

Music & Reviews: Tales from the Netherworld by Ghoulshow

Track Listing:

1. Spookhouse
2. Monster Closet
3. Nethervator
4. Jungle Voodoo
5. The Cemetary (Ghoulish VIP)
6. All Hallows Eve (Samhain)
7. Zeta Crash Landing
8. He Who Stalks the Night
9. The Cemetery (Original Mix)
10. Spookhouse (VIP)
11. Necromancy (Dead Roam Free)

Label: Graveyard Calling

Release Date: 29th July, 2013

Tales from the Netherworld, is the new release by electronic horror artist Ghoulshow, coming from the UK-based label Graveyard Calling. The album is being released both in digital formats and on limited edition cassette tapes, which are available through the Bandcamp page

It's a spooky yet danceable collection of tracks, from the theremins and saw bass of Spookhouse and menacing beat and xylophone of Jungle Voodoo, to The Cemetery (Original Mix) - a classic horror movie sample-laden collaboration with Graveyard Calling label-mate, Tommy Creep. Unusual sound and genre combinations are used throughout the album, not least on the track He Who Stalks the Night. It begins with gothic horror-esque harpsichords, before transforming into dub, then picking up the tempo with some EDM and dubstep at the end. 

Two songs on the album - Nethervator and Zeta Crash Landing - have a somewhat different feel to the rest of the album. Whilst they retain the spooky vibe of the other tracks, by way of foreboding synths and minor chords, they're distinctly different. Zeta Crash Landing has spacier sound and is definitely more influenced by sci-fi than horror, while Nethervator has an appropriately mechanical sound, even incorporating elements of experimental jazz into the mix. 

Overall, Tales from the Netherworld has a creepily sinister atmosphere, without losing the synth sound or tempo of EDM (electronic dance music), dubstep and drum & bass. Even if you're not usually into this type of music, it's still an enjoyable listen for fans of classic horror film & game soundtracks.


Sunday, 21 July 2013

Music & Events: The Candy Spooky Theater US Tourdates / Pandemonium Tour Vol. 1

Tainted Reality, who are the US management of horror rock band The Candy Spooky Theater, have announced that the band will be on tour in the US again this autumn as part of the Pandemonium Tour Vol. 1. DJ SiSeN, GPK, and Mighty Mike Saga will also be taking part in the tour. At this time, all information is subject to change, but the current dates are as follows:
  • Sep. 27th - Bellingham, WA (TCST only)
  • Oct. 2nd - Bellingham, WA (DJ SiSeN & GPK only)
  • Oct. 4th - Bellingham, WA (DJ SiSeN & GPK only)
  • Oct. 5th - Bellingham, WA (TCST only)
  • Oct. 9th - San Francisco, CA (TBA)
  • Oct. 11th - Das Bunker, Los Angeles, CA (All artists attending, performance by DJ SiSeN only)
  • Oct. 12th - Complex. Los Angeles CA (All)
  • Oct. 13th - Phoenix, AZ (TBA)
  • Oct. 14th - San Antonio, TX (TBA)
  • Oct. 16th - Boston, MA (TBA)
  • Oct. 17th - New York, NY (TBA)
  • Oct. 18th - Philadelphia, PA (TBA)
  • Oct. 21st - Columbus, OH (TBA)
  • Oct. 26th - Mexico City, MX (DJ SiSeN & GPK only)
  • Oct. 27th - Mexico City, MX (DJ SiSeN & GPK only)
  • Nov. 1st-3rd - Nekocon (All artists attending, performance by DJ SiSeN only)
  • Nov. 4th - Norfolk, VA (TBA)
You can buy tickets for the two TCST solo shows via NeonPromotions at TicketLeap here: TICKETS

For up-to-date information, check the official TCST website or Tainted Reality's website.

Short Films & Animation: The Green Ruby Pumpkin

The Green Ruby Pumpkin was made by visual effects artist Miguel Ortega and Tran Ma in their living room, with the help of a small crew of their friends. It was "inspired by the work on Edward Gorey, Dr.Seuss, Charles Addams and Shel Silverstein" and the film has an overall storybook feel to it.

Although the space and budget were limited, the pair managed to create and elaborate, spooky world and characters through the use of green screens and digital effects.

The story takes place on Halloween, in a town where all the children visit the house of Bella Deats each year, for a chance to get some of the candy from her green ruby pumpkin.

There is, however, one rule: "No costume, no candy"...

For more information on The Green Ruby Pumpkin, its creators and their current, feature-length project The Ningyo, visit the sites below↓:

Friday, 19 July 2013

Toys & Dolls: Blade (Puppet Master) Plush Doll

"He'll kill you with cuteness"
Full Moon Direct very kindly gifted us one of their Blade (Puppet Master) plush dolls for review, but I should point out that this didn't influence my opinion of the toy in any way. 

Blade is the leader of the puppets in the Puppet Master films and one of only 3 characters that appear in every movie in the series. In the films, he's a little creepier and looks more like this:

The doll arrived inside a sturdy cardboard box, packaged in plastic; no other packaging was necessary for a soft toy. I also feel the need to mention that even though Full Moon Direct are located in the US, the shipping time to the UK was only 5 days, which is pretty fast!

The adorable over-sized plush is a creepy-cute version of Blade and all of the character's distinctive features are included, from his white hair to his knife and hook hands. He stands at 12 inches tall, wears a trench coat, trousers, and shoes made of felt and a wide-brimmed hat made of rigid hat felt. The coat and trousers can be removed, if you really feel the need to undress him, but the hat is sewn into place so that it doesn't fall off of his head.

The quality of the doll is great; the materials used are durable and the stitching is well-finished. The only somewhat negative point about him is the hair. It's stitched to his head at the sides, but still looks like hair due to the fake fur fabric used. However, at the base of his head it is left unattached, which means that the edge of the fabric is unfinished and so tiny clumps of fur occasionally fall out along the bottom. That is only very occasionally though, and doesn't detract from the look or durability of the doll.

Overall, Blade is a well-made and unusual plush doll that I would recommend to fans of the Puppet Master franchise or lovers of the "spooky cute" genre. 

↓You can purchase your very own Blade plush doll, for $24.95, from Full Moon Direct below↓
"Blade" Plush Buddy

Stay up to date with the latest news from Full Moon Features:
Full Moon Features on Facebook

Tuesday, 16 July 2013


Written and directed by Oklahoma Ward the independent horror film, CRAWL BITCH CRAWL, is set for release sometime this year. The plot takes place in a world in which the human population has been decimated by a virus, which causes women to become infertile and unable to bare children. An elite security team have been assigned to protect the last fertile woman in the world - known as "The Package" - and in order to complete their mission they must escort her through a claustrophobic system of tunnels.

Nicole Alonso as Tank in CRAWL BITCH CRAWL
If that weren't already enough to deal with, they end up being chased by a terrifying creature, through two thousand feet of the fourteen inch wide tunnel.

Torey Byrne as The Package in CRAWL BITCH CRAWL

Books & Art: The Book of Skulls by Faye Dowling

"The skull is one of the most recognizable symbols of today's contemporary visual culture. Since its 1970's renaissance in the iconic album designs of bands such as the Grateful Dead, the skull has found its way into the visual vocabulary of urban life, adorning T-Shirts, badges and rock memorabilia as the ultimate symbol of anarchy and rebellion. Repurposed and recast by artists, illustrators and designers, it has become one of the most iconic cultural symbols of our time. In response to this cultural phenomenon, The Book of Skulls presents a cool visual guide to the skull, charting its rebirth through music and street fashion to become today's ultimate anti-establishment icon. From Black Sabbath to Cypress Hill, skater punk graffiti to Gothic tattoos, from high-couture to Hello Kitty and Dali to Damien Hirst, this book is the ultimate collection of cool and iconic skull motifs. Drawing together artwork from music, fashion, street art and graphic design The Book of Skulls is a celebration of one of today's most iconic cultural symbols."

Last year, my sister gave me The Book of Skulls by Faye Dowling and I then spent a happy few hours pawing through the gorgeous artwork and interesting bits of information included within the book. As you may have guessed from the title, its focus is art and design pieces, all of which incorporate skulls in one way or another.

This collection is not only beautiful, but is peppered with historical contexts and insights into popular culture over the years as well. I would highly recommend this book to anyone who likes macabre art or - obviously - skulls, as it a quirky, semi-humorous take on what is usually a dark subject matter.

More pictures after the cut below↓

Sunday, 30 June 2013


SOPOR's new, long awaited album 'POETICA -All Beauty Sleeps' is about to be released on 19th of September this year. The pre-order is already available at InfraRot! Both CD&Book and Vinyl editions are available for now.

This album's every song are poems by Edgar Allan Poe, and as we who are familiar with SOPOR know, Anna has sung his poems for many, many years. So quite exciting to get an entire album with poems by Poe.

The tracklist is as follows:

01. The Oblong Box
02. Dreamland
03. Eldorado
04. The Sleeper
05. Alone (I)
06. The Conqueror Worm
07. Alone (II)
08. The City in The Sea
09. The Oblong Box (II)
10. The Haunted Palace
11. A dream Within a Dream

For more information on the release, kindly click here.

Wednesday, 29 May 2013

Movie Reviews: Truth or Die (2012)

Movie: Truth or Die (2012, AKA Truth or Dare)
Director: Robert Heath
Starring: Liam Boyle, Elana Di Troya, Jack Gordon
About: This is a British movie about a group of teens who while at a party, play a game of 'Truth or Dare', but the game gets out of hand when one of the party goers (Felix) is picked on by the other teens. A few months later they are all invited to a party that Felix is throwing at his parents mansion. But when they get there they are told the party is in a cabin further up the road. They arrive to find that Felix's brother is there instead, but where is Felix, and what does his brother have in store? -Michael Hallows Eve

The Crimson Reviewer talks about the 2012 British slasher film, 'Truth or Die'. (Original UK title: 'Truth or Dare').

To watch more of The Crimson Reviewer's videos make sure you subscribe over at his channel:
The Crimson Reviewer on YouTube

Saturday, 25 May 2013

Movie Reviews: The Mooring (2012)

Movie: The Mooring (2012)
Director: Glenn Withrow
Starring: Hallie Todd, Thomas Wilson Brown, Karli Blalock
About: Every 40 seconds a person goes missing. In northern Idaho, a group of teenage girls attended a summer camp to help them connect with nature without technology. They were told it would be a summer of change. As the girls' houseboat is suddenly stranded in the middle of the river an odd couple comes to their aid. What was suppose to be an act of kindness turns deadly as the girls find themselves on the run, being pursued through the forest by a brutal and determined killer.

The Crimson Reviewer shares his thoughts on Glenn Withrow's 'The Mooring (2012).
To watch more of The Crimson Reviewer's videos make sure you subscribe over at his channel:

Thursday, 23 May 2013

Games: Humble Bundle Horror game sale

For the next week you can get the collectors edition of horror game Alan Wake and it's expansion (American Nightmare) for whatever you feel like paying for it (minimum is $1) via the Humble Bundle website. The site is unique in that when you pay you get to choose who gets your money; divided between the website, the developers and charity and other causes.
Anyway, the game's description is as follows:
"When the wife of the best-selling writer Alan Wake disappears during their vacation to Bright Falls, Wake’s search turns up pages from a thriller he doesn’t even remember writing. A dark presence stalks the small town, pushing Wake to the brink of sanity in his fight to unravel the mystery and save his love."
Here's a video of a guy who can describe things better than I can!

Movies: Rage of Innocence

Press Release:
NEW MOVIE RAGE OF INNOCENCE, psychological Thriller. Filming Summer 2013.

Veteran filmmaker Mark Pirro writer/director of such cult classics as Deathrow Gameshow, Color-Blinded and most recently The God Complex is set to begin principal photography on a terrifying new production entitled Rage of Innocence. Departing from the comedic tone, a standard of Pirromount's previous features, this is their first venture into a psychological thriller. 

The movie centers around a high school teacher Vincent Marsden played by John McCafferty (Deathrow Gameshow, The God Complex) who begins a relationship with a female teacher. He soon discovers that his lover's teenage daughter Raven Sutton played by actress Stef Dawson (Wrath, Shadow of the Monarch) is psychologically unbalanced. Raven stops at nothing to keep him from dating her mother. Her violent rage escalates and spirals into a dangerous web of lies, deceit and ultimately forces him to play her deadly game. It’s Fatal Attraction meets The Crush

Cast Includes:
Stef Dawson as Raven Sutton
John McCafferty as Vincent Marsden
Chelsea Cook as Sharon Marsden
Keeshan Giles as Detective Kuchner
Douglas Macpherson as Attorney Chet Neimano

For news & more info, follow Rage of Innocence on Twitter or like their Facebook page.

Saturday, 18 May 2013

Animation: Bloodfeathers

Bloodfeathers is a a creepy claymation short animated by Vanessa Soberanis with sound design by Ryan Edberg. The story centres around a robot who "longs for the impossible", which ultimately causes it to descend into disturbing fits of rage and, ultimately, self-destructive madness. 

The animation style and character designs are weird and gorgeous, and the subtle but unsettling soundtrack / voice acting fits it perfectly. The film is only around eight and half minutes long, so obviously there isn't a huge amount of character development, but there is more than enough content and the ending provides a satisfying - and somewhat inevitable - conclusion. If you enjoy animated work by The Quay Brothers, Jan Svankmajer, or the stop-motion music videos of the band Tool, you'll probably enjoy Bloodfeathers too.

You can watch the entire short below:

Thursday, 16 May 2013

Movie Reviews: A Thousand Cuts (video review)

Movie: 'A Thousand Cuts' (2012)
Charles Evered
Starring: Michael O'Keefe, Olesya Rulin, Michael A. Newcomer, James Van Patten, David Naughton

The first video for HSL from The Crimson Reviewer, featuring a crossover guest appearance from The Lesser Known Reviewer.

To watch more of The Crimson Reviewer's videos make sure you subscribe over at his channel:

And check out The Lesser Known Reviewer too:

Tuesday, 14 May 2013

Movie Reviews: Nightmare on Elm Street - Freddy's Return: A Nightmare Reborn

This is the first video for HSL from our new contributor, Danny Huckins; a review of the fan made movie Nightmare on Elm Street - Freddy's Return: A Nightmare Reborn!

Watch more of Danny's reviews & subscribe over at his channel: 
Danny Huckins Official

And don't forget to subscribe to Horror Shock LoliPOP too ;D
Horror Shock LoliPOP on YouTube

You can also watch the full NOES movie below:

Wednesday, 1 May 2013

Announcement: HSL Re-vamp & Video Reviewers Wanted

We're currently revamping Horror Shock LoliPOP and will be back on May 10th. 

We'll also be welcoming our newest Ghoulish Creature, video reviewer, Tony!
Want to make review videos for Horror Shock LoliPOP? E-mail him at: tonydallape@yahoo.com with your name and a link to an "audition" review video you've made.

Tuesday, 16 April 2013

A-Z Blogging: N is for (A) Nightmare on Elm Street

(A) Nightmare on Elm Street is a 1984 horror film by Wes Craven, and was the first in a long series of films (8 or 9...it's hard to know what counts and doesn't!). It introduces Freddy Krueger, played by Robert Englund (who had, up to that point, been most famous for V, though apparently been considered playing Han Solo in Star Wars...) as a murderer seeking revenge on those that killed him, which he does by killing people in their dreams.

It was a pretty low budget film ($1.8 million, which is low for a film ok!) but was an instant success and, like I said, spawned many many many more.

After a rushed wallpaper job, many wondered what happened to Freddy

It features lots of killings, some nice shadows and cinematography, and blood. Lots of blood. But what makes this film really, really scary isn't any of this. I'm pretty sure I can't just post such terror on the front page...


After the cut (be warned! Cannot be unseen! D:)

 This post is part of the A-Z Blogging Challenge, 2013.

Monday, 15 April 2013

A-Z Blogging Challenge: M is for Manticore


- Origin: The Manticore is a creature originating in Persian mythology, known as the Martyaxwar (man-eater). The name was taken from early Middle Persian and mistranscribed / adapted into a Greek and then English pronunciation (mantichora and manticore respectively). Due to the behaviour and locality in which Manticores originated, some believe that they were actually borne from over-exaggerated tales of tigers, of which the local people of the time were terrified.

- Descrption: Manticores have the body of lion, face of a man, and a voice that sounds similar to a trumpet. They also have the tail of a scorpian or dragon, which they use to shoot spines, like arrows, long range, and can also throw the spines, like javelins, at close range. As if that wasn't deadly enough, Manticores also have three rows of shark-like teeth in their mouths. Sometimes Manticores have the body of a dragon, in addition to wings and / or horns as well.

An illustration of Geryon the Manticore, by Gustave Doré, from The Divine Comedy.
- Behaviour: Manticores hide in long grass, showing only their human faces to those who approach. They then take those who come too close by surprise and devour them whole. They leave nothing of the person they have eaten, not even clothing and possessions; it is as though their prey has simply disappeared.

More about Manticores:


 This post is part of the A-Z Blogging Challenge, 2013.
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