The Goblet of Shock
By Michael Aronovitz
Horror Author, College Professor, and Rock Critic
Andrew Drage (pseudonym Brewin) is doing it right. Since I saw Black Sabbath change the world in 1970 with a new take on music in the form of horror-metal, (followed by Alice Cooper, Slayer, Rob Zombie, Cannibal Corpse, Ravenscroft, and Slipknot just to name a few), I have been trying to merge metal and horror books. Here, Brewin has come up with the most brilliant hybrid I have yet seen. He starts with the prequel in the form of a metal album by The Dark Horde, titled “The Calling.” Below is the link to the lyric video album.
“The Calling” Album Credits:
* All tracks composed by Hanny Mohamed (Black Majesty) and Logan Jacobs, except track ten ‘Rebirth’ composed by Chris Kane (Eye of the Enemy), and track eleven ‘Slaughter’ composed by James Lowe
* Concept and lyrics by Brewin
* Main vocals by Danny Cecati (Wicked Smile, ex-Pegazus, ex-Eyefear)
* Narrated by Kevin Powe
* Demonic vocals by Shaun Farrugia (In Malice’s Wake)
* Guest acting appearances on track three ‘Childhood’ by Dexter Seamus as young Henry, and by Jane Brewin as Henry’s mother, and on track five ‘Therapy’ by Andrew Carolane as Bernard Russell, psychiatrist
* Mixed by Ricardo Borges (Fascination Street Studios)
* Mastered by Jens Bogren (Fascination Street Studios)
* Artwork by Aldo Requena (Hammerblaze)
The singles from the album are:
Mask – https://lnk.to/TDHMask
Childhood – https://lnk.to/TDHChildhood
Victim – https://lnk.to/TDHVictim
I am most impressed by the musicality of this band. The vocals are exceptionally strong, and the guitar work fits the particular themes as if a film soundtrack. The rhythm guitar tracks are driving and especially powerful, just as the lead guitar solos are sometimes wailing with emotion and at other points, acrobatic and blistering. Moreover, the lyrical content is a special bonus, focusing on the antagonist as a “good guy” who, through dreams and visions, is slowly exposed to his “real self” that will let in the beasts that would destroy the world as we know it. I am a huge fan of the “empathetic evil one,” and Brewin sets us up perfectly for the novel which will depict the impending wave of destruction.
I feel that the writing should speak for itself, and so here is an excerpt from The Dark Horde:
“As one unholy mass they begin to moan, a rasping discordant sonority that carries from one horizon to another. The Dark Horde in their many millions, cast their impious gaze upward to the central stone: a fifteen-metre monolith of agony and lust. A bloody pillar of stone with the likeness of knotted ebony flesh, barbed spikes gracing its vile surface like hairs, impaled on which hang the weeping bodies of ravaged humans.”
Here is the link to The Calling page on Brewin’s website:
I am intrigued by Brewin’s vision, in that he clearly believes novels are stronger with music, horror novels are better accompanied by metal, and neither should be more important than the other. I think the dream would be to write the ultimate horror book released with a coinciding hit record landing on all the metal playlists, and next having it all culminate with the film that would include the “horror sounds” manufactured by the band as well as the hit soundtrack represented by a few best-selling singles. It is an honor and a wonder to be a part of Brewin’s journey, and I am happy to celebrate it here!
Now is the time when we withdraw to the porch or the bar or the basement to have a drink and share stories, methods, and a love for horror and metal! My fourth novel titled THE SCULPTOR comes out through Nightshade/Skyhorse books January 25th, 2022. The dark hero is a 10th grade metal head, and her favorite band is “April 21st,” a (real life) Brazilian metalcore band recently signed by Eclipse Records.
Also, newly released through Cemetery Dance Publication is my lifetime collection of shorter works, titled DANCING WITH TOMBSTONES. Available now!
Some artists do it right. Some do it all. Brewin is one of them.