Monday, 28 November 2016

Winter Chills

Just published by Egaeus Press: "A Midwinter Entertainment".

Features my 40 page short story 'Better Than Borley Rectory', which describes the experiences of a contemporary film crew in the former family home of the quietly famous author of ghost stories, M.R. James. Part homage, part pastiche, the story is predominantly an original work of new fiction.

Also features work by Vincent O'Sullivan, 'X.L.' (aka Julian Osgood Field), Marion Fox, Mark Valentine, Ron Weighell, Alison Littlewood, Arthur Symons et al.

Limited edition of 400 copies, superior quality illustrated 286pp hardback.

Wednesday, 16 November 2016

+ Welcome to The Discomfort Zone - Stay Tuned For More Jarring Musical Narrative +


"...inspired by the 1922 German Expressionist silent film 'Nosferatu', the song's verse includes a dissonant guitar riff, which uses high-pitched notes similar to those in 'Breadcrumb Trail' and a drumbeat based on snare and toms, absent of cymbals. The chorus, featuring 'jagged' distorted guitar and a thrash-influence beat, segues into an extended jam before the song ends with 30 seconds of feedback."

[Anon., Wikipedia.]

"Last one in isn't a math rockster!"  


" 'The Murder Mystery' is more intricately structured and harder to parse, the closest the Velvets ever came to writing a concerto or symphony. An instrumental intro lays out the two main musical statements of the piece. The spoken/sung lyrics, divided among all members of the band and split cleanly into left and right channels, approach mere gibberish, but also touch on the Velvets’ primary topics—derangement of the senses, violence, body horror, and the nighttime rhythms of urban social life. The Velvets frequently indulged their Dionysian impulses, but 'The Murder Mystery' is possibly their most artfully constructed piece of music, and it’s every bit as impressive as their more chaotic work."

[Source: Magnet Magazine.]


I told you what, I told you what. 

Please note that passengers should be aware that there will be abrupt time-signature changes during the journey in addition to the occasional unexpected piano bridge. 

"We're The Sweeney, son, and we haven't had any dinner." 


"In the suite 'Paranoid Android,' acoustic and electric instruments float understatedly through the mix as Yorke sings, through clenched teeth, lines like "Ambition makes you look very ugly." Complex tempo changes, touches of dissonance, ancient choral music and a King Crimson-like melodic structure propel the song to its conclusion, where Yorke sings in a pleading voice, "God loves his children." "

[Mark Kemp, Rolling Stone.]

Saturday, 1 October 2016

Sobriquets & Seasonal Winter Chills

First draft of 'The Mine Field' 

A short while ago I decided to commit to writing mainstream contemporary literature under three of my real names e.g. Christopher Richard Barker. However, I still feel the irrepressible urge to occasionally compose work of supernatural horror (I refer here to the more intellectually sublime edge of the genre, haunted by the likes of Robert Aickman, Angela Carter and Reggie Oliver). To that end I created the sobriquet 'Jane Fox'. 

As 'Jane Fox' my short story 'The Mine Field' won third prize in a recent British Fantasy Society short story competition; this tale is set at the former workings of Magpie Mine in the Peak District, Derbyshire. If you have ever visited the site you may have been struck by its strange, eerie atmosphere. Also as 'Jane Fox', my longer piece 'Better Than Borley Rectory' is soon to appear in Egaeus Press's 'Midwinter Entertainment', alongside work by the superlatively decadent Vincent O'Sullivan

'Better Than Borley Rectory' recounts the experiences of a television crew who seek to film a documentary about the famous ghost-story author M.R. James at his former family home in Great Livermere, Suffolk. It is based upon my personal visits to the house and a real-life ghost story told to me by one of the subsequent residents. My fictional characters discover the childhood diary of M.R. James under one of the beds, and their plunderment of this dangerous volume unleashes a series of disturbing supernatural incident. 

The story is an homage to the televised ghost story as perhaps best exemplified by the BBC's excellent 'Ghost Story For Christmas'.

Still from 'The Signalman' (BBC 'Ghost Story For Christmas', 1976)

Always Get A Signature

"Now listen to me, Hobart. We are going to inject you with a dangerously high dose of methyl amphetamine, but first we'd like you to sign a waiver exonerating us of all responsibility, just in case you decide to do something stupid - like jump out of a third floor window."

From "Night Of The Demon" (1957.)

Wednesday, 17 August 2016

What's that noise?

If there's one thing guaranteed to make my blood boil - apart from, that is, a champagne socialist pretending he has a conscience, or a racist UKIPER feigning patriotism as a mask, or the way that supermarkets manipulate my time by inconveniently locating milk and bread in the farthest corners of the retail galaxy - it is having to wear a blood pressure monitor clamped to my arm for 24 hours. Squeeze that exquisite agony every 30 minutes.

Saturday, 6 August 2016

Tuesday, 19 July 2016

Jimmy Driving Round Toys R Us

The following movie contains images of strong autistic cuteness. It depicts my then 9 year old son driving round Toys R Us in Colchester back in 2012. Further cast members inc Edwin & Denise as themselves. 


(With apologies for the poor video quality.)