Lookee yonder ~ Wyrd Harvest Press 2018

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2018 is already again a busy year for both Folk Horror Revival and Wyrd Harvest Press.
Lined up are talks at others’ events or media presences and again a fruitful focus of books.

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Our first venture into publishing back in the winter of 2015, Folk Horror Revival: Field Studies was very much a cutting of teeth. Using multi-contributors from many a field close and far for inclusion in a charity book and testing out unfamiliar Print on Demand demands led it is safe to say a headache or ten … But we were left in our hands, somehow put together by a new and relatively unexperienced quantity a tome that featured amongst its pages , contributions by the likes of Philip Pullman, Robin Hardy, Alan Lee and also a cornucopia of interviews with or essays by a surge of new talent. Field Studies, I think it is fair to say, opened more eyes to the genre of folk horror and its revival. Furthermore, though its creators have not made a penny from it; conservation and biodiversity projects conducted by The Wildlife Trusts have benefited well from its presence.
It was not a perfect book however, as some reviewers fairly pointed out, there were some formatting issues which gave an uneven appearance. A minor complaint, but one we took note of …..sooooooo …. this year sees a Second Edition of Field Studies, which not only sees the design improved but also features numerous new interviews and essays featuring the talents for instance of Susan Cooper, Pat Mills and Ronald Hutton and themes such as cults in cinema, communications with the dead and the wolf in the rye, amongst others.
The original Field Studies is no longer available to buy from our book-store but a new, bigger and better version is coming soon.

It will be followed by Harvest Hymns (a 2 volume extravaganza released simultaneously). Pieced together by the mysterious music-magician Melmoth the Wanderer, prepare to be treated to the sumptious tastes of the twisted roots and sweetest fruits of Folk Horror music. Delving first via essays and interviews, into a paganistic past of folk music, experimental electronics and witchy metal we are brought into the present of dark folk, drone and many other strange and wondrous aural delights.
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Also this year, we will bring to you a collection of contemporary ghost stories gathered by the author Paul Guernsey from a pool of talented haunted souls, whose nightmares have been illustrated by Andy Paciorek.
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Andy Paciorek has also been in cahoots again with professor and traditional storyteller Dr. Bob Curran to unearth the grisly tome that is The Wytch Hunters’ Manual.

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Also on the agenda and in progress for this year or beyond are Goddess – a volume brought to you by a female powerhouse delving into a wide variety of topics, The Choir Invisible, a book that deals with death in its varying shades of morbidity and beauty; and Urban Wyrd – a study into what happens when the harvest of folk horror and other strange fields, spills beyond the lines of town and country, both in place and mind.

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Peruse our existing titles at – http://www.lulu.com/spotlight/andypaciorek

100% of profits from FHR / Wyrd Harvest Press books sold in this store will be charitably donated at intervals to different environmental, wildlife and community projects undertaken by the Wildlife Trusts.

Winter Ghosts: What is This What is Coming? 4

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On the weekend of 15th and 16th December 2017, a strange mist will fall upon the coastal town of Whitby. From the sea fret will come haunting sounds and tales and more besides. Here over the coming days we shall in turn usher in the ghosts of winter …

Appearing at the Whitby Met as part of the Winter Ghosts event, Folk Horror Revival
are pleased to present the sinister, seasonal sounds of Equestrian Vortex featuring  Melmoth the Wanderer
Born from their mutual love of classic 1970s and 80s horror cinema this duo construct soundtracks to horror movies that were never made. Hailing from the dankest, seediest corners of Newcastle Upon Tyne, the Equestrian Vortex are here to take us into the darkest recesses of the minds of H.P. Lovecraft, Dario Argento, Aleister Crowley, Kenneth Grant, Fabio Frizzi, John Carpenter, Lucio Fulci, Jess Franco, Jose Larraz, Jorge Grau and Jean Rollin. They are an occult celebration of the hidden practices of magick and the supernatural, using their love of vintage analogue synthesizers to inspire their paeans to the darker side of culture.
Darren Charles is curator of Unearthing Forgotten Horrors, a radio show with the intent of reviving interest in classic horror movie soundtracks, wyrd psychedelia, freaky folk, and anything that doesn’t fit into the mainstream musical landscape. He has been a member of the Folk Horror Revival admin team from the group’s humble beginnings and has recently completed an MA in History from Newcastle University with a focus on 17th century witchcraft trials in England and Scotland. Darren is currently working on several projects for Folk Horror Revival, and has spoken at Cambridge University, The British Museum, Summerhall, Edinburgh and The Hepworth, Wakefield on the subject of Folk Horror.
Antony Wealls has been producing music since his late teens under various guises and genres. He is currently involved in collaborative projects The Equestrian Vortex and The Mortlake Bookclub, he also produces solo material as Time Destroys All Things.

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Integrating with The Equestrian Vortex will be Melmoth the Wanderer evoking a spirit of Jamesian ghosts of Christmas

`Shadow master and guardian of the weird and wayward’…`remixer supremo and visionary seer of the sonic pastures that lurk beyond the imagination.’ Melmoth wanders the outer reaches of The Field Bazaar collecting sounds, snatches of spoken word and music that seems as old as the timeworn paths he treads. When the burden of these sounds becomes too much for our devout and religious miscreant he visits the bedlamites, the insomniacs and those truly alone offering his audio harvest as comfort from the silence.

The Melmoth the Wanderer mixes are the result of these nocturnal visits to their creator Jim Peters – a self-confessed Audio Relic Hunter locked into the sounds of the night, the light and the half-light.

mixcloud.com/Melmoth_The_Wanderer/

Melmoth is honored to be counted as one of The Mortlake Bookclub and has also mixed and remixed for The Hare and the Moon, The Soulless Party, Zeuk, Sproatly Smith and many other artists on the Reverb Worship label.

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www.facebook.com/themortlakebookclub/

https://www.facebook.com/#!/Melmoth-The-Wanderer-277345965761781/

Visuals for the performance will be provided by Adam Scovell, author, filmmaker and creator of the Celluloid Wickerman blog
Adam Scovell is a writer and filmmaker from The Wirral, currently based in London. He is studying for a PhD in film music and transcendental style at the University of Liverpool and Goldsmiths. He has produced film and art criticism for more than 20 digital and print publications including The Times and The Guardian, runs the Blog North Awards-nominated website Celluloid Wicker Man, and has had film work screened at FACT, The Everyman Playhouse, Hackney Picturehouse and Manchester Art Gallery. In 2015, he worked with Robert Macfarlane on an adaptation of his Sunday Times bestseller, Holloway. At present he is filming a number of projects on super-8 film including a collaboration with Iain Sinclair, and has published a book on folk horror for Auteur Publishing.

 Join us at Winter Ghosts

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Winter Ghosts: What is This What is Coming? 1

Winter Ghosts: What is this What is coming? 2

Winter Ghosts: What is This? What is Coming? 3

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Winter Ghosts – tickets available now from Here

Folk Horror Revival Presents Winter Ghosts, Whitby December 2017

(Folk Horror Revival Presents Winter Ghosts 2017)

Folk Horror Revival Presents Winter Ghosts 2017

Folk Horror Revival presents Winter Ghosts Where better to spend an engaging winter’s evening in the compan…

Where better to spend an engaging winter’s evening in the company of the Folk Horror Revival group, than in the beautiful coastal town of Whitby. This event promises to be one of the highlights of the wyrd calendar, and is most definitely not to be missed.

In the intimate setting of The Metropole, Whitby, we cordially invite you to join us for our winter soiree, a gathering of the clans on the North Yorkshire coast. Folk Horror Revival present a series of exhilarating talks and musical performances for your terpsichorean pleasure.
Beginning at 4pm, the event gets under way with a series of thought provoking oratories with a distinctly local flavour, before we plunge headlong into an evening programme of esoteric, auditory treats for the soul.
Talks:
George Cromack – Coastal Terrors
Elaine Edmunds – The Tell Tale Art
Bob Fischer – A Story To Shiver To
Followed by – The Flash Company’s Mummer’s Play

Live Music:
The Equestrian Vortex featuring Melmoth the Wanderer
The Soulless Party featuring Chris Lambert
Leasungspell
Inkubus Sukkubus

Poster Image courtesy of Andy Paciorek and Erin Sorrey

Christmas on the Black Meadow – a seasonal mix from Melmoth the Wanderer

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The fourth seasonal mix from Melmoth_the_Wanderer recalls his visit to The Black Meadow – a place steeped in wyrd folklore and mysterious happenings. This mix contains reading by Chris Lambert from his book  `Christmas on the Black Meadow’. 

The music comes from the two albums also associated with The Black Meadow – The Soulless Party’s `Tales from the Black Meadow’ and the compilation album inspired by Chris’ original book (of the same name) made up of tracks by artists from around the world – Songs from the Black Meadow.

Both of these albums are available for purchase.

Do you see shadows in the mist? Are you stalked by meadow hags? Do you long to play with black stars? Do you crave a darker yule?

Then this book could be for you!

It is Christmas on the North York Moors.
The snow sits upon the heather and bramble. The fences around RAF Fylingdales are silent and still. A dense mist grows in the distance. If you listen closely you can hear strange Yuletide chants, the hum of a land sphere and the cackle of a meadow hag.
This collection of Christmas tales from the Black Meadow contains three new Yuletide stories. Experience a beautiful inversion of The Nativity in A Black Meadow Christmas, warm
 your toes in a tale of matriarchal terror in The Meadow Tree and marvel at the delightful wonders of The Black Star. You will also find details of ideal gifts you could give and games that you can play when visiting the Black Meadow.
With beautiful illustrations by Andy Paciorek and Nigel Wilson, this is a festive treat that will bring joy and fear in equal measure to your Christmas celebrations.
All profits from the sale of this book go to Worldwide Cancer Research.

Discover more by visiting http://blackmeadowtales.blogspot.co.uk/ where you will be able to join the legions of enthusiasts already immersing themselves in the tales from the Black Meadow.

https://beta.mixcloud.com/Melmoth_The_Wanderer/christmas-on-the-black-meadow/

Christmas with the Wanderer

It has become somewhat of a tradition that Audio Relic Hunter Melmoth The Wanderer visits us all at this time of year with a very special seasonal gift. Not your usual sugary Yuletide fare but just as steeped in tradition and nostalgia – you can almost hear the fire crackle and smell the wood smoke mix with the smell of pine and Christmas spices as you enjoy these wintry soundscapes mixed with just a hint of Jamesian pleasing terror.

2013 – The Ghost of Winters Past

 

A mix of new and old music inspired by winter and the approaching festive season. It includes echoes of Christmas past from Shakespeare, The Box of Delights and a recounting of the Great Freeze of 1963.
I put the mix together with the idea in mind of waking to find the land white with the nights snow and the initial excitement that brings in everyone of all ages…..then the reality of what the weather means kicks in – as reflected by the Great Freeze commentary.

 

2014 – Christmas – through a glass darkly.

 

The stranger trudges through the snow covered streets glimpsing shadows and shades of the season through frosted windows. Echoes of Christmases past, present and future merge as he pauses at each window to absorb the sights and sounds…..through a glass darkly.

 

2015 – A Fireside Companion

 

This third of the Melmoth seasonal mixes is here.
The first took us through a landscape of ice and snow – the second took us back to our childhood when the television in our front room truly was a box of delights.
This year sees us attending Midnight mass and trudge back home through the snow in the company of Christmas ghosts, a certain signal man and all that makes for an un-silent night.

Otherworldly: Through the Eyes of Jason Atomic

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Chris Lambert Singing

Jason Atomic is an artist inspired by a love of underground cultures, scenes and fashion tribes, he investigates and documents them in his sketchbooks as quick, clean line drawings.

This love of fashion has led to collaborations with labels Charles of London, Yes!Future! & Milkboy Tokyo.

His speedy drawing style led to the development of live portrait sketching performances in galleries, clubs and at events around the world, during these he makes life-size, full-length sketches of his willing victims in marker pen on long rolls of paper. In  2008 he set an un-official world land/speed record for portraiture at The National Portrait Gallery, London.

He has curated various art shows on occult & comic book themes, Including Hail To The King (a tribute to Jack Kirby), Iconography Of Mask, Image Duplicator (a response to Roy Lichtenstein) & Magick Eye.

More recently, upon discovering that an anagram of his name is ‘Satanic Mojo’, he has embarked on a multi-platform collaborative project of that title. Inspired by cults, conspiracy theories and the counter culture.

This has spawned ‘Satanic Mojo Comix’, an annual ‘Festival Of Dark Arts’ and seasonal ‘Satanic Flea Market’

 

The Satanic Mojo Manifesto

https://vimeo.com/91959688

www.jasonatomic.co.uk

www.satanicmojo.com

On October 16th Jason ventured into the hallowed halls of the British Museum to observe and capture the Folk Horror Revival: Otherworldly event … this is what he saw …
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Lee Gerrard-Barlow

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Shirley Collins
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Jim Peters & Sharron Kraus

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Reece Shearsmith
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Andy Paciorek & Darren Charles
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Adam Scovell
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James Riley  & Gary Lachman

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Gary Parsons

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Shirley Collins & Reece Shearsmith

All Images © Jason Atomic

Septimus Keen – the forgotten village

Where English folk music had Cecil Sharpe and American roots music had Alan Lomax the outer reaches of the sonic spectrum has its own audio relic hunter. A shadowy enigma who set off in search of lost melodies and forgotten horrors more years ago now than anyone cares to remember. He surfaces every few months with a knapsack full of dusty reel-to-reel tapes and curious field recordings. Never aging – never speaking, this denizen of the field bazaar is known only as Melmoth (The Wanderer).

It was Melmoth who first revealed to the world the truth behind the lost village and has subsequently become something of a curator of its creative output. Rumours soon sprung up as to Melmoth`s connection to this mysterious location– and it is even suggested that his shadowy origins and personae of anonymity stem from his time as a resident of this strangest of places.

There is a small, almost forgotten village in the county of Lancashire, not far from the shadow of Pendle Hill, which bears the unusual name of Septimus Keen. However it wasn’t always this way…

Traditionally the village had been a small but thriving example of Blake’s green and pleasant land until the rise of the dark, satanic mills stripped it of its workforce, its pride and its identity.

The village – by this point almost abandoned – was saved from eradication by well-known philanthropist and local eccentric Mr Septimus Mordecai Keen.

He purchased the village and then proceeded to invite many of the day’s greatest minds and artists to join him. What he had planned for the village was to set up what was initially a psychological experiment under the guise of a very unusual artist community. His first move was to rename the village after himself; then he went on to insist that absolutely everybody who came to live in the village would also be required to change their name as well – also to Septimus Keen. His dream was that a community

would grow where all sense of class or hierarchy would be rendered unnecessary because every man, woman or child would be made equal by their shared name. Without a name to identify someone when they weren’t present he believed would lead to gossip and criticism becoming a redundant concept. It was in this idyllic environment that Septimus Mordecai Keen envisaged a utopian, creative hive that would change and lead the world. This theory did seem to work for a while until the issue of the naming of babies born to community members became a reality and people started to leave in protest to his hard-line dogma. The small group who remained (a mere 14 people compared to the original 103) carried on this eccentric way of life long after their founder’s death. It was often said that the village of Septimus Keen was the only place in Europe not effected by the Great War – a fact that may have sown the final seed of resentment and suspicion which eventually lead to the abandonment of the village in 1922.

The most interesting outcome of this experiment relates to this last pocket of believers. After 20 years the name `Septimus Keen’ now no longer referred to a specific individual in any way and the name had become meaningless. What remained was a village where there were so many `Septimus Keens’ that in fact no one was Septimus Keen anymore. Labelling individual identity had become redundant.

Because of this all of the writings and the music, artwork and theatre, science and electronics that came out of the village at a prolific rate in those last 5 years are credited solely to `Septimus Keen’. There is no way of knowing the age, gender or ethnicity of any of the creators. We don’t even know how many different

people were involved in this last body of work nor if they were original invited villages, children of the commune or strangers who had found refuge there.

When Warhol commented that he wanted to distance the artist from the art and leave just the impression of the piece he was referencing the earlier achievements of this artistic community. The Sci-Fi-Delic sounds you hear were indeed written, arranged and performed by Septimus Keen – we just don’t know which one.

One of the earliest known photographs of a resident of Septimus Keen. It can be dated due to the fact it quite clearly predates the village’s newspaper ban – which came into force 18 months after Septimus started recruiting the great and the good to join him in his privately owned village.

Resident photographer and feminist trail blazer Septimus Keen not only recorded life in the village but was also instrumental in the breakdown of this artistic Utopia. The birth of her daughter Septimus (seen here in one of her own portraits) prompted a discussion about the anonymity of the shared name and it’s suitability for children born to the commune. It was this questioning of Village founder Septimus Mordecai Keen’s vision that signalled the start of the end for many folk.

Recently recovered from a box of junk thrown out during a house clearance these plates record the very first spring the inhabitants enjoyed at Septimus Keen. The sense of playful excitement and experimentation that were hallmarks of the early years is evident in these charming images.

Experimentation with Eastern religions and beliefs and those of a more esoteric nature very much informed the outlook and attitudes of the early residents.

Later to become a regular destination for village outings this plate shows Septimus Keen recording the recently discovered `Dark Hole’ which lay just outside the village.

After Marcus Swift chose the village of Septimus Keen to recover from his near fatal crash on the Bexhill Seafront there was a brief craze among younger residents for assembling a convoy of sidecars and heading off into the countryside for picnics. This was brought to an end when a collision with the gates of Stonyhurst School drew attention to the unconventional commune and Septimus Mordecai Keen was forced to
ban all petrol driven vehicles from his village just as he had done newspapers a few years earlier. This heavy handed approach to maintaining the village’s integrity and survival was certainly one of the factors in the beginning of the end for the village of Septimus Keen.

Resident photographer Septimus Keen provides the evidence for much of what is known about the strange and secretive daily life in the village of Septimus Keen. Her images and radical feminist views make her possibly the most significant resident after that of founder Septimus Mordecai Keen himself. Here is a self-portrait of Septimus with another of the village’s more well-known residents who before being invited to join the commune had performed for Princess Alexandra at Windsor Castle with a young Charlie Chaplin and The Eight Lancashire Lads


The Strigenforme Sisters from Hanover where, at Septimus Keen’s invitation, the first residents from overseas to arrive at the village but their unwillingness to adopt the communal name unfortunately meant their stay was a very short one.
It is believed that it was their ability to mimic birdsongs that amused and intrigued the village’s founder and lead to him paying for their journey from Prussi…a to Lancashire. It is even rumoured that they were able to reproduce a full dawn chorus using just their combined vocal mimicry
As with so many former residents it is not know what happened to them when they left the village…..but it is said that if you listen carefully as the sun comes up on a still summers morning they can still be heard in the countryside around the deserted village

A day trip to `the dark hole’ for the villagers of Septimus Keen.


A couple of photos showing the leisure activities of village members. From cricket matches on the green which would involve everyone in the village either playing, catering or simply sitting back and enjoy the sound of leather on willow.
The children were encouraged to express their artistic side and would often put on impromptu plays based on folk legends, heroic poems and tales of high adventure that would occasionally make their way into the village from the outside world.
These images have recently come to light from scrapbooks found in the vicarage of St. Mary’s and All Saints in the nearby village of Whalley. Research continues

There is still no explanation for the curious spheres that appeared buried on the outskirts of Septimus Keen. Many of the day’s top scientists and psychics gathered to examine them and exchange theories. Inevitably comparisons were drawn with the famous `Land Spheres’ of Yorkshire’s Black Meadow despite the lack of luminosity from those at the village of Septimus Keen. A series of leylines and old bridle paths that run through both villages are rumoured to intersect at Hobbs Lane in East London.

Another example of the experimental work being carried out by the scientific minds of Septimus Keen. Frustratingly nothing remains of their pioneering work other than a handful of photographs – so we unfortunately have no idea of what became of either one of these two.

Some of the nation’s greatest minds were lost/absorbed into the ranks of Septimus Keens. It is a testament to their belief in Septimus Mordecai Keen’s visionary experiment that they accepted the anonymity of becoming a village member. Of course the very fact they could hide away in such a liberal and anonymous community also allowed them to experiment on the very edges of what scociety considered acceptable – and beyond.

One of the more eccentric Septimus’ and his `Time Travel Device’ – no one knows what happened to him or his machine but they were both noted as absent when the village was finally closed down.


The village of Septimus Keen is considered by some as the birthplace of EVP research – recent analysis of the recordings made inside the electric pentacle have revealed an almost constant drone of voices and unexplained sounds that has left one of our researchers a gibbering wreck and seen the cylinders locked up in the basements of Cox & Co for everyone’s safety and sanity