Thursday, July 25, 2013

In the Footsteps of the Walking Dead

So I just returned from vacation with Mrs. Zombie, WolfGirl, and ZombieBoy. We went to Florida and stayed on the island I used to go to every summer when I was a child. Besides the fact that I burned my poor, pale, undead skin horribly... I enjoyed myself. We stayed on the Gulf-side and I spent some time just floating in the Gulf, resting in general, and visiting some incredible Tampa-area breweries to indulge my unnatural thirst for craft beers. 

On our ride back (18+ hours in a car, with WolfGirl, who's been on vacation and eating take out food for an entire week, and the resultant gassiness aside), I was lamenting the fact that this family vacation didn't include a visit to a horror movie filming location. We did go to Ybor City in Tampa - where they filmed much of the suburb Punisher film that starred Thomas Jane and John Travolta - but it wasn't the same. 

I do plan, the next time I travel to Tampa for work, to take a jaunt down to Fort Meyers and visit the filming site of Romero's Day of the Dead. Remember the beginning? When Miguel lands on a city street and pulls out the bullhorn? That was filmed right in downtown Fort Meyers.

I also realized, as we were booking a hotel on our return trip, that we were actually stopping at the exact exit in Tennessee I would use to get to Morristown - where Sam Raimi and Bruce Campbell filmed the original and sublimely incredible Evil Dead. Alas, Mrs. Zombie could not be convinced to divert our return home to plunge into the Tennessee back country and commit some minor trespassing because she wanted desperately to get home. My disappointment was crushing; or, as Mrs. Zombie said, "Quit moping about because you're sunburned, tired, and acting like a geeky fanboy who was told that he had to cancel a trip to ComicCon. You'll live."

I should add that she also, in a related conversation, denied a trip to ComicCon for family vacation next year. She is a cruel tyrant at times. Too bad she's so damned pretty, and actually willing to sleep with me, because I wouldn't put up with this otherwise. 

Oh well. I do plan to head to Morristown this fall. Watch for it!

But, I digress. Anyway, I was all mopey on the ride home, when it dawned on me that we would be driving through Atlanta! It was an incredible oversight on my part, I don't know how I didn't realize sooner that we were in the heart of Walking Dead country! 

So, I quickly unplugged my iPhone - disconnecting the creepy tones of Midnight Syndicate and The Cure to snap a quick picture. 

This is what I got: 

Although not exactly how I wanted it to look, it was close enough to make me happy. It was far too much to hope it would look like this:

Yes, I get that it's spun like 90 degrees. We were coming in on I-75 South and the iconic shot of Rick is taken from State Route 10 looking west towards I-75, but it was close enough to please that nerdy part of me that finds immense pleasure in stalking famous horror sites.

I plugged my iPhone back in, turned on some more music (or, 'that weird shit you listen to' as Mrs. Zombie calls it), and settled in to the rest of my drive; secure and pleased as I imagined the horror of a city as large as Atlanta succumbing to the ravenous, moaning zombie hordes of the undead apocalypse.

It almost made the relentless tingle and pain of my sunburn bearable.

Friday, July 19, 2013

Midnight Syndicate Releases MONSTERS OF LEGEND Album


Symphonic gothic horror musicians MIDNIGHT SYNDICATE have just released their sixteenth studio album, MONSTERS OF LEGEND.   This “tribute to the golden age of horror” is inspired by horror films from the silent era, Universal Studios’ horror classics, Hammer Films, and other European horror films of the 60s and 70s.  It features the sweeping symphonic horror instrumental music and sound effects in the signature style the band helped pioneer. "We want to make you feel like you are a character in one of those classic horror films - that you've entered a world where any one of those iconic Universal monsters could be right around the corner," said composer EDWARD DOUGLAS.   The CD artwork features original images from classic Universal Studios horror movies including BRIDE OF FRANKENSTEIN, WEREWOLF OF LONDON, and DRACULA.

“Those classic horror films are at the core of what we do in Midnight Syndicate, so to do an entire disc based on them was a lot fun,” added Douglas.  “Musically it required us to use more traditional orchestral instruments, and use them in more ways than we have in the past.  The result is a fuller orchestral sound with a heavy classical music influence.   There are plenty of nods to James Bernard, Bernard Herrmann, and other early film composers.” Although the band promises the new disc will deliver the dark atmosphere haunted house designers, roleplaying gamers, and Halloween music enthusiasts expect from them, they feel they've crafted a disc that transcends their favorite time of the year.  “Like CARNIVAL ARCANE, we feel we’ve taken things up a notch both musically and with the sound design on this release,” said GAVIN GOSZKA.  “There’s a lot there to listen to and lose yourself in.”

In addition to over 50 minutes of new music, the band went back into its archives and recreated several tracks from its early releases Born of the Night and Realm of Shadows, bringing the total runtime of the disc to over 65 minutes.  “Both the new album and those older ones are set in and around the mysterious hamlet of Arcacia.  We felt it would be a great opportunity to breathe new life into a few of our lesser known tracks from those discs to help tell this story.  For additional atmosphere the band called on voiceover artist Dick Terhune.   “Dick’s known throughout the haunted house industry as the “Voice from Hell,” needless to say he was the perfect match for this disc,” added Goskza.

The CD is available now through the band’s website, as well as iTunes and  It will also be available in select Halloween retailers beginning in August.   A collector’s edition 12” vinyl version is also available on the band’s site.

Official Midnight Syndicate website:
Midnight Syndicate on Facebook:
Midnight Syndicate on Twitter:
Dick Terhune – Voice From Hell website: