Music has the power to soothe the soul, drive people to obsession, and soundtrack evil plots. Is music the instigator of madness, or the key that unhinges the psychosis within? From guitar lessons in a graveyard and a baby allergic to music, to an infectious homicidal demo and melancholy tunes in a haunted lighthouse, Crescendo of Darkness will quench your thirst for horrifying audio fiction.
HorrorAddicts.net is proud to present fourteen tales of murderous music, demonic performers, and cursed audiophiles.
Please enjoy an excerpt below from Crescendo of Darkness.
“While My Guitar Gently Bleeds” by Benjamin Langley
A rock musician is visited by an undead band member and
forced to pay for his crimes against rock ‘n’ roll.
Bursts of incoherent chatter, like the babbling of demon tongues, interrupted the hiss of static from the radio in the corner of the recording studio and caused Dallas McCann to stir in his leather recliner. More asleep than awake, he placed a hand to his face and smeared drool from the corner of his mouth into his bushy beard.
He glanced at the framed platinum disc on the wall as the fugue in his head cleared. The frame had been knocked askew at some point, so his younger face stared back from the cover of the Dark Disciples debut album at a slight angle. That was when there were still four of them. He was on the left, posing with his first guitar, a turquoise Charvel Surfcaster. Woodstock was at the back, holding his drumsticks aloft. On the opposite side was Gerry, holding his guitar like a weapon, his mop of hair covering his face. Dead centre was Tyler, his face half-hidden by the smoke billowing from his mouth.
Dallas jumped at a crack of thunder and turned his chair toward the window where lightning illuminated his modified, metallic black Porsche sitting alone in the parking lot. Another rumble of thunder followed a second later and then a high-pitched whine came from the radio. It was as if someone had set off a fire alarm inside Dallas’s skull. He massaged his temples for a second and pushed himself out of his seat, stumbling toward the radio, oblivious to the bottle of Vintage Vodka on the floor which he’d paid so much attention to earlier. It rolled when his foot landed on it and he went along. He had no chance of regaining his balance with an alcohol-soaked head and he crashed onto his back. Then the static was replaced by a laugh.
That’s right, and we’ve got more killer hits right after these messages.
Dallas yanked the plug from the socket to kill the radio mid-jingle. The silence relieved him enough to stretch from side to side, cracking his neck and setting his spinal column aflame. He muttered under his breath and eyeballed the radio. Maybe it was time to call it a night. The mixing could wait until Gerry and Woodstock were back in the studio with him. He rubbed his neck and glanced at the platinum disc on the wall.
The young Dallas McCann never used to get aches and pains. When did he get so old? He looked down at the empty vodka bottle. Was it the drink that had made it impossible to charge around the stage without fearing his heart would batter a hole through his rib cage? He picked up the bottle, placed it in the wastebasket, and cursed under his breath.
As he headed for the door, he reached into his pocket to pluck a cigarette from his pack. He figured they hadn’t helped either, but he wasn’t about to give them up.
As he sparked his lighter, something wet and fleshy squeaked on glass behind him. Dallas spun to the window separating the control-room from the live-room. He flicked the switch to light up the room on the other side of the glass. There was something on the window. A fingerprint. A burning sensation passed through his chest. He reached toward the print, unable to stop himself from pushing his own finger against the mark. It was warm and smeared when he touched it.
As Dallas looked at his finger, bloodied from the mark on the glass, static burst from the radio. Every muscle in his body clenched. He turned and glared at the plug dangling far from the socket.
We have some awful, breaking news… The DJ’s voice quavered.
Dallas moved across the room with one enormous step, grabbed the radio, and shook it. The rear compartment flapped open and batteries tumbled out. Again, there was silence. He gawked at the faint, red smear on the glass.
Static buzzed from the radio and with it, a shock of electricity zapped strong enough to make Dallas drop it to the floor. The casing cracked on impact.
To repeat Dallas McCann has been found dead in his recording studio.
Shocked, Dallas kicked the radio. The plastic casing shattered as it struck the wall and the speaker unit came loose and fell forward, muffling its output.
To read the rest of this story and thirteen
other horror music shorts, check out:
Crescendo of Darkness
Direct link: https://www.amazon.com/Crescendo-Darkness-Jeremiah-Donaldson/dp/1987708156
Edited by Jeremiah Donaldson
Cover by Carmen Masloski
Let music unlock your fear within.