Monday, May 6, 2019
2019: May 6th The Thirsty Crows - Anchors Up
I have not talked enough about The Thirsty Crows new album in these pages. Hangman's Noose, available from Batcave Records, is easily going to slip into my top five albums of the year. Over the last week or so, it has become one of those records I put on and end up listening to three or four times in a row; at fourteen songs/thirty-nine minutes, it's a perfect amount and yet not quite enough, so that by the time I reach the cover of Dramarama's Anything, Anything that finishes out the album, I'm ready for another full go-through. There's something epic about the way these guys approach Rockabilly; there's some great moments where the band members' love of metal comes through, and it blends perfectly with the 'billy aesthetic, so we get something both classic and refreshing. The mark of a great record, to be sure.
I recently interrupted my read of Alan Campbell's The Art of Hunting to act as an HWA colleague's first reader on his debut novel from Cemetery Dance. I'll post more about that once the release is officially announced, but in the meantime, since finishing that book, I jumped back into the second installment of Alan Campbell's Ghostdigger Chronicles, and just like that, I've fallen in head over heels again.
I can't recommend these books enough; people who know my tastes in fantasy fiction know I have little tolerance for 'High Fantasy.' But Campbell's Gravedigger books take one of the major tropes of High Fantasy, the inclusion of Dragons, and ports it into a truly fascinating world. A world where an ancient, almost extinct and now imprisoned race of cosmic sorcerers long ago tainted the Oceans with a baffling poisonous agent known only as Brine, making it toxic to most life. Humans who are exposed to Brine stiffen and crack like stone; full submersion - 'the drowned' - stay alive indefinitely, but change in strange and horrifying ways. And the sea life mutate horribly as well, only coming to the surface fleetingly, so that all the new forms are not necessarily known or understood, enormous boogey men of the depths. Oh, and the dragons, those are humans the Entropic Sorcerers long ago twisted into these massive new forms. And they're all insane, as you would be after going through such a thing.
I'm really not giving you much about the books, but it would be very hard for me to do these novels justice in only a few short words. All I can say is The Art of Hunting is turning out to be thrilling, and insanely more imaginative than the first volume, Sea of Ghosts. I know a lot of other folks out there that have similar tastes to my own - and those who do like High Fantasy - would probably all love these books.
There's an Amazon Link to buy these HERE. However, they're out of print and pretty expensive, so if you need an easier option, try HERE.
Playlist from 5/05:
The Thirsty Crows - Hangman's Noose
White Zombie - Astro Creep 2000
James Brown - Black Cesar OST
Card of the day:
Moving forward. Which I am, by leaving two stories somewhat hanging and going full hilt on Ciazarn. So that feels good, to get validation from the cards.