I collect and love Halloween-themed records. I have obsessed over them. I have spent ridiculous amounts of money on them. I've wondered about how sitting by yourself, drinking beer and listening to Halloween sound effects records might not be healthy. I suppose it is a way to go back in time, capture a bit of lost youth, because they DO NOT make Halloween records like they used to...
If I did not suffer from untreated Adult Attention Deficit Disorder, I would love to write a whimsical book about how the records of Wade Denning helped shape me as a person, helped make me the person I am today...maybe one day...
I came across this mysterious, Cleveland-based (that is, recorded here in the best location in the nation) record a few years:
The Bleeding Mirror and other original tales of the supernatural.
I have yet to find any information about it - other than what the liner notes tell us:
The theme of the album is horror - sheer occult horror to ice your spine and tingle your nerve ends. These are stories for a stormy night, when the fire is low and the hour is late.
The author of these tales are uniquely fitted for the task. Evelyn Martin and William Wray were both born with a caul - that birth membrane sometimes called "a veil over the face." Those people are blessed - or cursed as the case may be - with a caul over the face of birth, are supposed to have second sight and be granted the power to see things supernatural.
Martin and Wray certainly kept the legend alive, both separately, and since their writing partnership began. Many of these experiences are chronicled in their book, DAMNED THINGS. Since then they have authored several books, including DEVIL'S ARCHWAY, BITTERWEED, and THE DAY THE ANIMALS LEFT.
The Bleeding Mirror is a true story, as is The Rocking Chair. Both Martin and Wray have seen the light at Maco. The authors have been repeated guests on the Alan Douglas Show, (NBC) discussing their supernatural experiences.
Martin and Wray together with Ilene Latter who enacts the female voices on this album, are founders of the Physical Research Society of Northeastern Ohio.
Miss Latter is equally well known in the world of the theatre and the world of radio and television commercials. She is featured on the album together with William Wray and Carl Reese, actor and personality with Storer Broadcasting.
The album is produced by Evelyn Martin. Recording and production engineer is Bob Nowac. The album was recorded at Alcon Recording Studios, Inc., Cleveland, Ohio.
Obviously, these folks are not out to snag the "monster kid" market of the 1970s - this is some serious stuff here. The fact they founded something called the Physical Research Society of Northeastern Ohio, which, I will assume, must have been some sort of organization that did paranormal research tells us that these folks are not out to just give sugared-up kids the creeps.
And the early 1970s is my guess as to when this record hit the shelves or was part of some weird mailorder catalog or was featured as an item for sale in one the illusive books written by Martin and Wray - who knows! It was released on the Macabre record label. The labels logo was just a black circle enclosed in a box - you can see it in the bottom right corner of my shoddy photo.
There was a record label associated with the studio in which the record was recorded. The releases on the label look like they fetch a pretty penny from the hardcore collectors of Northern Soul.
The Halloween records of the 60s/70s were fairly graphic. When I played the classic, Famous Monsters Speak, record for my children, I was taken aback a little by the grotesque descriptions of murder described by Frankenstien's Monster.
Of course, my kids loved it...
Wow...the description of bones cracking in a monster's horrid hands is nothing compared to the much darker regions explored on The Bleeding Mirror and other original tales of the supernatural.
Leave it to a couple of mystics from Cleveland to present us with a tale about the end of the world and the death of...well...listen to "The Answer":
The Answer by Hallandgorcey
Admitedly, some of the performances on the record border on the hysterical. "Don't Bury Me!" for one is a doozy. And, yes, the word "original" in the title of the record might be stretching things more than a bit considering every one of these tales has a classic tale of terror that influenced it. "Don't Bury Me!" is an obvious ode to Edgar Allan Poe's tale, The Premature Burial. "Maco Light" was surely influenced by Charles Dicken's wondrous fright tale, The Signal-Man.
And so on.
For homegrown, obscure "horror-themed" records, Evelyn Martin / William Wray / Ilene Latter / Carl Reese's presentation of The Bleeding Mirror and other original tales of the supernatural is quite fine for this and many other Halloween's to come. Especially the last track of the record...Sheesh!
side 1 - The Bleeding Mirror / Don't Bury Me! / Reincarnation / Maco Light / The Spider
side 2 - Baby Doll / The Rocking Chair / The Ivy Plant / The Answer
Get scared Here!
For more info on Halloween records the ONLY place to go is here. When I discovered Jason Willis and his amazing site six years ago I felt, well, less alone in the dark. HAhahahhahahHAahahaha!