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CRANE, G. LUCAS & RIC ROYER - Dark Cabinet of the Strange Weird


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"It has been a long forever since I had heard a good gothic collaboration. Hearkening back to the days of radio nasties and coming off like a bizarro--¢??Munsters-¢?¬ù (so, actually eerie and funny?), Royer and Crane pulled out all the shock stops as they crept their way through macabre stories-with-sound, like on -¢??Pig Dog Baby,-¢?¬ù -¢??Creepy Aunt Nikki,-¢?¬ù and -¢??Man with One Eye and a Hook for a Hand-¢?¬ù (the latter is a peculiar piece with hilarious asides by Royer). Horror should unnerve and challenge, but mock-horror should fascinate and delight, and Dark Cabinet of the Strange Weird certainly did. There were no mounting horrifying crescendos or terrifying rides to the edge of darkness, but there were plenty of toothsome, subtly spooky, old-style tales of suspense. One would be half-right to think of Dark Cabinet of the Strange Weird as a mere novelty (the cob-webbed album comes cased in an Erin Womack-illustrated crypt box), but they would be short-changing it; this ghoulish union was, surprisingly, a very embraceable example of surreal narrative and sound-torturing that remained with the listener well past its conclusion, but not necessarily for the -¢??chilling-¢?¬ù reasons you may think. Release of the year? Hardly. Smile of the year? Definitely." - Ehse.

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