Draconis Blackthorne's Shadowmantium

Malefik Musick Reviews by Draconis Blackthorne

By howling demon winds, with hellfire torches burning fiercely through the night, hooves quake earth and rattling chains, so emerged brother Krampus in fearsome shadow of arching horns, and bristling black thorns dripping with scarlet rivulet tracing to The Abyss, a bountiful blackened cornucopia bestowed of devilish delights!

A cordial letter written by clawed hand in nubile crimson arcane script, displaying the Krampus gargoyle himself!

You're still tops on the naughty list!


Malefick Musick
The grande doors are opened to the Halloween & Solstice seasons, from scurrying and twirling leaves singed with abyssal flame, to the first early snowfall, Hellegantly presented here are the musickal keys unlocking the shadows of the mind...

    The Haunted Symphony Ebonshire
  • The Haunted Symphony: Resounding through the night within lambent hallways of this ghostly manse reflecting spectres & reverberations of instrumental passion, The Haunted Symphony echoes forever. My favorite orchestrations herein are Touch of Evil and Bloodstained Legacy.
  • Ebonshire: Enchanting yuletide opus to complement Winter's Knight, Majesty, Eve. Perfect Winter accompaniment throughout. Forgotten treasures emerge 'neath snow-laden crypts to haunt the mind, notes deftly floating through the air as so many snowflakes unique in countenance.

Ghoulish Games...
  • The Cabinets of Dr. Arcana to accompany Theater of Illusions: A walk into the illusions of The Magic Castle, to nestle into a shadowy velvet-curtained dimension, upon an ornate table, puzzle game accompanied by the arcanum amulet {a highly detailed work of occultic art}, to summon those darksome muses from deep within the psyche. The Mysterium contains the shadowmirror to reveal the mysteries of boundless potentials, the darkside within.
Nocturnal Visions
    Born of The Night
  • Born of The Night: The Gothic Fantasy Artwork of Joseph Vargo {9"x12" paperback; 184 pages; 140 Color, grayscale}: Accompanied with descriptions, Hellegant pictorial filled with ideal ornamentation for the Coffintable, adorning one's library, even walls, properly framed if one so chooses to collect the posters option as well; compiled herein this compendium of delighfully dreadful spectacle into gothic realms reflecting dreams and nightmares sublime. Whence one has originated, resides perpetually, and shall ever exist, as you can feel it right down into the black bones. Whether enjoyed in darkened chambred by candlelight by oneelf and one's inner daemons, or by invitation to those who dare traverse this gothic universe in tandem, an adventure into a subterranean labyrinth of timeless treasures.
Enter The Fortune Teller's tent...

Nox Arcana: Season of The Witch

LII A.S. / Monolith Graphics / Joseph Vargo, William Pietrowski / genre: Classical, Orchestral, Instrumental, Gothic

Perfectly hellmarked Friday the 13th, upon the hallowinds comes forth to The Haunted Noctuary...

We are greeted by Mother Halloween and Sister Witch to meet and gather 'round the earthen bones through the darkness unto the bonefire amidst skeletal trees, 'neath the glowing harvest moon of Hecate.

Each opus absolutely fulfills the triple 666 stancheons of Malefick Musick considerations:


6. From the superb cover art, Raven's Hollow opens to reveal an alluring scene of a beautiful Witch in necromantic rapport surrounded in wondrous spellcrafts of The Black Arts & Witch Crafts, the shades of darkness on the nyte of the ghouls. Grimoire, memento mori, feline and avian familiars, the chalice affirming the allegiance one to another with The Dark Forces of Nature, the alchemy of the hellements fire & brimstone, children of Belial and Lucifer, infernal flames 'neath the Baphomet-festooned cauldron's brew...

She is magnificent in Gothic splendor, conducting The Powers of The Moon & The Night, framed by the harvest moon. I'm sure Warlocks & Witches can profoundly relate to this depiction, wherein The Forces of Darkness flow through oneself so potently, when all is in coalescence, where one is the incarnation of Satan, Lilith, Baphomet, everything.

The veritable Booklet of Shadows leads us further into enchanted grounds in enchanted worlds, our beloved Mother Halloween points the way to Hallow's Gate in riddle & rhyme sublime.

There upon the stones the diagrams unfold, the mandragore's secrets, by talismanic incantations, and Magical oak's sanguinous touch. Through hellfire, the black scroll emerges by Devil's hand writ, another key manifests, souls by black thorned vines enraptured.

Cryptographs by parapsychodramatic dimensions unleashed! Even the blackened disc itself carries the Omnigram* 'neath another invocation still, 13 to complete the spell. Decipher the riddle to bring the spirit of Halloween even closer nigh.


6. Each splendid orchestration certainly complements One's Nocturnal activities, whether shadowy rites or sweet carnal pleasures, making potent accentuation to the Samhain season and throughout the year. Each takes you throughout the seasons in Hell, through the 13 moons, beginning upon these Witching nytes.


6. From the nefarious narrations by dear Sister Witch, opening the way through the enchanted forest through the deep, dark Shadowlands, setting the tone and casting the first spell to finding your way upon this gnarled and sinister path.

The descriptions further enhance the journey within, to the incantations of Theban legendry, the opus is complete.

* The Omnigram is Satanic in the sense that it represents the totality of Magic, to help or hinder; As Above, So Below materialization, and the Male/Female polarities in Satan & Lilith, Baphomet All-One.
Draconian trivia: The Omnigram was used on the cover of pre-Dracomeroth tome The Omnis, which includes the All-Seeing Eye, Amun, Udjat, 3rd Eye.

Nox Arcana: Gothic
L A.S. Monolith Graphics. Genre: Classical, Instrumental, Gothic.

1. Testament 2. Grimstone Manor 3. Ashes To Ashes 4. Forgotten By Time 5. The Portrait Gallery 6. Into The Darkness 7. Familiar Haunts 8. The House Beyond The Graveyard 9. Unhallowed Halls 10. The Doll House 11. Melancholy Memories 12. Stir Of Shadows 13. Dark Realms 14. Beyond The Forbidden Gate 15. In The Blood 16. The Beast Within 17. The Black Crypt 18. Wake The Dead 19. The Others 20. Rise Of The Ancestors 21. Dark Surrender
Nox Arcana: GOTHICThe sun goes down...

One of this year's sublime treats arrives shortly before Halloween - like opening One's Trick-or-Treat bag at the Gates of Hell contained within a Gothic Mansion, with the beauty on the cover as your guide to the lambent hallways within. A most welcoming environment.

This offering seems a compendium of haunted attractions contained into one opus - a blissfully phantasmagorical scarescape where each shadowy chamber yields another familiar beautiful nightmare, in both instrumentation and theme; a morbid combination of horrors. A phantom voice beckons one on to accept one's heritage, as spectral whispers have done one's entire life.

Some resonant orchestrations with Testament & The Black Crypt alluding to The Haunted Mansion theme with oboe and melody; with The Portrait Gallery reminiscent of Danse Macabre. Of course, the title Wake The Dead reminds One of that stimulating traditional Addams game upon Samhain night.

Warlock, Vampire, Beast, GOTHIC is ideal for spookhouse presentations as well as personal atmospheric enhancement the year through.

Behold The Key...

By the light of the harvest bloodmoon, Grimstone Manor contains many secrets, unlocked to reveal undead ancestral treasures long dormant. Dare enter to haunt and be haunted. ∞

Nox Arcana: Legion of Shadows
Halloween, XLVIII A.S. Monolith Graphics. Genre: Orchestral, Gothic, Classical.
"Beyond the world of light, there exists a hidden realm where creatures of the night revel in the beauty of darkness. Nox Arcana invites you to enter the esoteric order of the Legion of Shadows to explore the mysteries of the night as you immerse yourself in a gothic soundscape of haunting melodies, eerie sound effects and pulse-pounding, symphonic orchestrations."

Upon this blessed Hallowe'en, did Samhain bring forth a treat unto The Haunted Noctuary, Amidst the crunching leaves and scents of candied confections, incense and wax, costumed children roaming the darkened streets, with only the soft glow of jack o' lanterns' rictus upon ominous porches daring tricks for treats, the air bristling with Magic as mysteries await 'round every corner; and pleased to add these orchestrations to the night, enhancing the pervading eeriness manifold.

And so was this opus added to the celebrations this eve, to the trepidation of those without, and for the sustenance of those whose black flame ever increased the hellfire burning in mind and breast, even 'neath the gaze of Baphomet's beneficence.

It seems to Me that the only real noticeable difference from the more or less Halloween aesthetic pervading, is that Halloween night is when trick-or-treaters come to the door, and otherwise the optimum ideal time to enact necromantic rites, and otherwise celebrate Halloween's Birthday, as it were, or if so inclined, Satan's...

Track list: 1. We Are Legion 2. Hidden Realm 3. Skeletons In The Closet 4. Shivers 5. Distant Memories 6. Ancient Flame 7. Loveless 8. Dreamscape 9. Evil Genius 10. Ghost In The Mirror 11. Toccata 12. Lorelei 13. Black Phoenix 14. Spirits Of The Past 15. On Dark Wings 16. Haunted Dreams 17. Into The Night 18. Rites Of Passage 19. Arise 20. Legion Of Shadows 21. Heart Of Darkness

From the inspiring introductory narrative We Are Legion through to Heart Of Darkness, you are ushered in by a sweetly toning music box granting a mystic sensation as willow the wisp courses through fern and tree, down a pathway to an enchanted dimension filled with Magic and secrets. Ancient Flame portrays an arcane atmosphere set in a temple, such as a ziggurat, where Djinn are summoned from black fire to haunt the dreams of mortals. In Dreamscape, may the mind travel forth upon etheric wings. A violin stoccato adjoins with euphoric strings along with an ominous pipe organ and a descending chorus to articulate the Evil Genius; while the Ghost In The Mirror passes through the pane... is that Lorelei singing as a banshee, floating through the hallways? Anticipation increases as the atmosphere deepens with movement in the darkness taking form, a projection born of black flame, the Black Phoenix takes flight into the dusk to bring the night, On Dark Wings we ride, while necromantic specters pour forth as columns of amorphous fog.

Of special note, Maestro J.S. Bach's Tocatta and Fugue in D Minor is given a multi-dimensional treatment with blended uses of pipe organ, violins, and piano combinations, accompanied by spectral orchestral permutations unheard of until now, making for a most memorably remarkable, unique variation on the piece, interpolated with a deeper Gothic resonance. This particular opus is dedicated to Nox Arcana fantoms, the veritable Legion of Shadows who haunt the night eternal, arising to the blackened skies in deepest shadow.

The booklet displays such an elegance, decorated with Vargo's reflective visions, darkened beauty therein, evocative characters, as the Black Phoenix rises, signifying immortal regeneration. Ideal for Lair environment enhancement, ceremonial implementation, even romantic accentuation.

Listen to The Dark Angels sing...

Crimson Winter As an extra treat, I was pleased to survey a copy of Crimson Winter by William Piotrowski included in the veritable Halloween basket, the soundtrack to the film by the same name. This opus carries a profoundly sympathetic element, with evocative echoes of retrospective manifestation sustaining a timeless flow, recalling visions of a haunted cathedral nestled in the darkest recesses of the mind, and vampiric violins so deftly bleeding forth the essence of melancholic thrall. With resplendent uses of ghostly choral and enchanting aria reverberation, Crimson Winter creates an omnipresently dark dream scape of eerie refrains.

Track List: 1. Brotherhood of the Dragon 2. Falcon's Flight 3. Echoes of the Past 4. Into the Wilderness 5. Broken Prince 6. Elric 7. Grim Discovery 8. Mortal Love 9. The Wolf's Prey 10. The Lion Rises 11. Blood of the Elk 12. Gift of Love 13. Ora Pro Nobis 14. God's Forgotten Children 15. In Pursuit 16. Reflections of Sorrow 17. Betrayal 18. Broken Wings 19. Crimson Winter 20. A Great Destiny 21. Vampires Among Us

Echoes of The Past incorporates Spanish guitar indicative of the fiercely elegant Flamenco, with drumming granting a Mediterranean feel, while the potent In Pursuit harkens to Bram Stoker's Dracula {Kilar}, while other selections haunt the mind with traces of The Lost Boys, and Interview With The Vampire; The Wolf's Prey sustains a mesmerizing aria eliciting an impression of ascension, as does Ora Pro Nobis, with a projection of flight - sustaining tones of Vampiric meditation. God's Forgotten Children definitely has a demonic intonation, emitting echoing sounds from The Abyss with spiraling devils encircling; Into The Wilderness contains a rustic feel; the piercing stabbings of violins in Vampires Among Us aristocratically jab into the flickering chamber's atmosphere; and A Great Destiny splices the thrilling effervescence of an epic quest. An overall sublime opus from Mr. Piotrowski.

It is pleasing to possess the Yule orchestration along with the harvest offering, which along with Winter's Knight, Winter's Eve, and Winter's Majesty, will no doubt add to the celebrations of the impending Winter Magic as well. In combination, definitely makes for a most pleasing 'nightmare before yulemas', as it were. ∞

Nox Arcana: Winter's Majesty
XLVII A.S. Monolith Graphics. Genre: Instrumental; Orchestral, Seasonal.

Nox Arcana: Winter's MajestySo the cold ice winds have brought this enchanting music coursing along frost-laden hilltop and skeletal tree. As first snow falls, the whispering gusts clear the way for Winter's Majesty enthroned, scepter in one pale hand, the concentrated essence of Winter in the other.

The Winter King appears as a sage-like Wizard, rather resembling Christopher Lee in My observation, exuding Invernal Magic to the land, as the forest itself comes alive with wondrous apparitions sublime.

Ideal for Solstice celebrations and ceremonial accompaniment, every piece herein is a carol in itself, and is the companion opus to Winter's Knight & Winter's Eve. Played in succession, it yields a medieval charm gloriously complimenting the season, and enhance Solstice Sorcery, whether by the light of the snow moon, softly flickering candles, incense intermingling with the atmosphere, or reposing by the fireplace, perhaps even while on a invigorating Constitutional. Winter's Majesty is sure to add a regal ambiance in this Season of Lucifer.

Amidst timpan and fife, The Gregorian Shadow Choir echo through the wilderness, joined by an orchestra of violins, woodwinds, organ, bells, classical guitars, dulcimers, haunting piano, along with the introductory narration, and even a rendition of Scarborough Fair. Ghosts of the past merge with the present, leading you into the future in a diaphanous blanket of retrospective evolutions.

The booklet artistry featuring Vargo's imperious visual manifestations remains an elegant presentation throughout, an overall pleasing masterpiece on all counts. Whether submerging one's mind in the winter world amidst months of the chill or whatever time of year to create a total environment, the haunted gates are graced with a crystalline gleam, and so may the muses arise again. ∞

Nox Arcana: The Dark Tower
XLVI A.S. Monolith Graphics. Genre: Classical, Orchestral, Gothic.

Majestic. Aristocratic. Ominous...

The Dark TowerThe sky darkens in overcast bliss outside the window, overlooking the forest below. Storm brews and candlelight flickers. Lightning flashes to reveal nightmares come to life, while darkened orchestrations fill the gloom of the room. The enchanting voice of the spectral banshee drifts sweetly, with nocturnal breezes and apparition. Your journey upon the winding path has led you to The Dark Tower...

With traces of Born of The Night, The Dark Tower rises from the Underworld resurrected, overshadowing the night in nefarious contemplation. Magnificent artwork graces the opus throughout, illustrating the Gothic tale based on the book Tales From The Dark Tower in a landscape of tenebrous visual gratification, accompanied by the mazes of the mind to solve the hidden riddles within, keys to open secret doors deep within the recesses of The Castle.

A special invitation as a guest of The Dark Queen, to dine on crimson delicacies, as the Knight stands sentinel, while the mirthsome jester amuses the morbid court, voices echo through the stone hallways with haunting narration, as The Nocturne flows beautifully while dreaded denizens emerge.

Resplendent organs, gong strikes, ghostly choirs, the phantom orchestra, diabolical narrations, all ideal for Halloween celebrations & timeless Lair accentuation. Acquiring the tome is recommended to delve deep into the legendry herein. Another most enjoyable chapter in the annals of this malefic musical grimoire. ∞

Nox Arcana / Buzz Works: House of Nightmares
XLV A.S. Buzz Works, Monolith Graphics. Joseph Vargo: Vocals, Music, Art. Jeff Hartz: soundscapes. Design & Layout: Christine Filipak.

Trick or treat?

House of NightmaresLaying there amidst autumnal leaves, a likened-hued packet awaits possession, House of Nightmares has found its way from one to another this fine Dractober evening, in the wake of Theater of Illusion. Contemplating this latest opus by the combined talents of Joseph Vargo & Jeff Hartz at Satan's Hollow, a breeze actually blew upwards from the black earth, like the breath of The Dragon upon the flesh.

The sun goes down...

This splendid combination yields another haunted opus for the Halloween season, and celebrations the year through. The storm arrives as the sun sets, creating the mood on the way up the shadowed path, environments transgressed, sensations felt, then reveals the secret horrors which dwell within. What is it about this dark house that is so compelling? That certain glow, the strange shadows, the sounds...

Opening The Gates...

There is much one can relate to. In many ways, this release is a theme for that mysterious archetypal structure present upon the land and within the mind. Sound effects accentuate the permutations, the veritable dark force in nature orchestrated by daemonic hands.The Cover art features one such depiction*, the trapezoidal Black House, gray stone and iron spires, mansard roof, greeting with gargoyles and all those things that go 'bump' in the night, come and go, and live here...

Echoes From The Pit...

Vargo's classical compositions are thusly complimented by Jeff Hartz's serrated contributions {perhaps best exemplified in Bridge Between Worlds}. Of particular note, the title track House of Nightmares {establishing the proper ambiance by rolling thunder, echoes from The Pit, and emerging fog, asserting the presence of the Hellementals}, The Summoning {poetic incantation narrative to those we know so well}, The Black Abyss {churning, especially the sudden sounds of an impressive helltrain, no less}, Devil's Night {featuring fiery tribal reverberations upon decorated skins}, and the absolutely magical Hallow's Eve, capturing the enchanting essence of the Belial season {spectral organ and harpsichord with the subtle strains of the Halloween & Phantasm themes}. These key selections are connected by a string of complementary orchestrations enhancing one another in kind.

Like those before it, House of Nightmares tells a musical story projected by the imagination, where the darkness itself serves as a canvas for dreams, for fears, & diabolical gratification, conjoined with the nefarious legends accompanying them, illustrating that dark side dimension within and throughout.

* It was also a delightful surprise to see a familiar face upon the CD, since Midnight Syndicate's Born of The Night.

Nox Arcana; Theater of Illusion
XLV A.S. Monolith Graphics. Joseph Vargo, William Pietrowski, Christine Filipak, The Shadow Gregorian Choir. Genre: Classical, Instrumental, Orchestral.

The show is about to begin... the lights dim... Welcome to The Mysterium...

Ladies & Gentlemen... please open your programmes to reveal the cyphers within, and unlock the keys of Sorcery!

This opus is themed around the fine dark arts of illusion, of the body and mind, Lesser Magic applications, psychological manipulation, slight of hand, mentalism, prestidigitation, hypnosis, levitation, invisibility, necromancy, Alchemy, & much more, featuring a nice crossover into Greater Magic down in The Ritual Chamber, or Dungeon, if you prefer. Whereupon traversing deeper into the Abyss within, one discovers the true secrets of Magic...

The spotlight focuses on what your mind projects, a black mirrored stage, led by the omnipresence surrounding your darkest desires. You are summoned on a dark journey led by The Devil Himself in either a turban or top hat, robe or coat tails & tie, deep into the shadowy realm of dreams and nightmares, where one frequently transforms into the other.

Theater of Illusion is filled with haunting melodies, eerie narrations, & splendid artistry. A pleasure as always, an elegant presentation, diabolically decorated to please the senses, and an ideal atmospheric accent to open the gates & manifest those specters from the threshold of time and space.


Buzz Works / Nox Arcana: Zombie Influx
XLIV A.S. Monolith Graphics. Genre: Instrumental, atmospheric.

Zombie InfluxAlert! Level DEFCON 6: At last report, Civil Defense authorities are recommending citizens keep watch for walking corpses who are attacking the living and feasting upon human flesh. Lock yourselves securely inside your homes, and if attacked, aim for the brain stem to remove the head, for that is the only way they can be stopped.

Filled with sound effects to accentuate the theme, complete with news reports, air sirens, and the sounds of those rising from the cemetery, Zombie Influx is a tribute to George Romero's dark vision Night of The Living Dead. Composed with a decidedly War of The Worlds influence as well, the music is fast-paced, action-packed, and panic inducing.

Art by Joseph Vargo {a memento mori cover, with bulletins and military warnings in the booklet}, music composed by Vargo & Jeff Hartz, with arrangements by William Piotrowski, this excellent opus is a dramatic journey into classic horror sure to consume your mind with morbid entertainment perfect for Halloween adventures, celebrations, and otherwise whenever in the mood for thrills and chills. A must for Zombie aficionados.

Nox Arcana: Winter's Eve
{XLIV A.S. Monolith Graphics. Genre: Orchestral, Instrumental, Dark Classical}

Winter's Eve by Nox ArcanaWith the howling of hell hounds blending with that of blustery winds, what is this that the Krampus brought forth on this fortuitous Krampusnacht? In his big black basket, along with switchels and thorny reeds, is one Winter's Eve CD by Nox Arcana...

Like Winter's Knight, Winter's Eve calls to mind evocations of all those wintery traditions, while the Magic of the season comes alive like first snow when the orchestrations permeate the chilled atmosphere, glowing in the black light of the moon.

As a veritable companion to The Knight on the previous solstice opus, the pleasing cover features the beautiful Queen of Winter coalescing with owl and wolf beneath the silvery ghostly moon as snowflakes gracefully cascade upon the land, blanketing the earth in a white shroud of ice and snow. Dreamlike frosted visions embrace the senses in an enchanted forest elegantly illustrated throughout the booklet.

Along with the eclectic nucleus of Joseph Vargo, the remarkable musical materializations of William Piotrowski, Nox Arcana forms a complimentary quartet, as Christine Filipak lends her voice to the introductory narration "The Messenger", with the title track featuring the vocal talents of Jeff Endemann. A familiar piece in Green Sleeves adds an extra arcane element, and of course, the phantomesque permeation of the Gregorian Shadow Choir echoes darkly across the cathedral of the mind throughout.

As Season Belial transforms to Lucifer, Winter's Eve offers perfect accompaniment to one's nocturnal activities in these cold blissful nights by the yule fire. Have a splendidly sinister Solstice!

Nox Arcana: Blackthorn Asylum
{XLIV A.S. Monolith Graphics. Genre: Orchestral, Classical.}

Nox Arcana: Blackthorn AsylumAmidst tangled vines and spiny black thorns, there lays the magnificently gloomy edifice surrounded in a miasma, suddenly enervated with a flash from the storm. Dare you pass through the gates into the recesses of this demented dimension...?

The first spectacle one considers is the amazing cover art, an asylum still echoing ethereal shrieks in the still haunted air, whereupon entering the atmosphere, one is transported into a world of shadowy phantoms who lurk in the darkness of the sanitarium's corridors.

Nox Arcana are the musical wardens of this institution, guiding one via one Dr. Neville Aldritch, who unfurls his nefarious experiments upon the unfortunate residents; veritable so-called 'freaks' and undesirables of society, although each with their own fascinating complications. Cronologuing his progress in journals bedecked with strange occult diagrams, Blackthorn Asylum does carry many secrets... can you decipher their meanings? What you thought could not possibly be begins to reveal itself before your terrified eyes. Take care if you learn too much - for the closer you get to solving the riddles, the closer you reach the threshold of madness...

The experiments begin as dusk settles... the results of sometimes morbid work to reach a new plateau of technology, where sometimes certain "sacrifices" must be made for the evolution of science.

Based upon Lovecraftian idealizations, with a strong From Beyond influence, Blackthorn Asylum also calls to mind the characters of Dr. Victor Frankenstein, Dr. Jeckyll & Mr. Hyde, and even Dr. Moreau .

Along with the always gracefully aphotic, in keeping with the theme, some of the orchestrations in this opus appropriately tend towards the more atonal at times, pressed with a sense of desperation and urgency.

Also with the splendid introductory and concluding narrations {some of Aldritch's recorded notations} perceived as if from a phonograph, also notable is a segue-way track entitled "Shock Treatment" from the introductory atmospheric impressions, entirely comprised of the sounds of said activity, in a combination of deep pulsations ebbulating electrical currents amidst screams from the patient.

The richly ornate booklet contains stimulating puzzles, clues, and cryptographs depicting arcane theorems such as phrenology, procedures, treatments, and certain historical tools of the trade, manifested in Vargo's distinctive dark art.

Blackthorn Asylum manages to convey an entropically dramatic musical and visual presentation of 'chaos contained', sometimes blurring the lines in the listener's mind.

Nox Arcana
- Phantoms of The High Seas -
{X/XIII/XLIII A.S. Genre: Classical, Instrumental, Orchestral}

So beware the whispering wind...

1. Dead Men Tell No Tales 2. The High Seas 3. Edge of the World 4. Pirates 5. The Gallows Jig 6. Crossfire 7. Oblivion 8. Racing The Wind 9. Siren's Call 10. Trove Island 11. Against the Storm 12. Lords of the Deep 13. Maelstrom 14. Out of the Mist 15. Still Waters 16. Black Sails 17. Fate of the Tempest 18. The Fog Rolls In 19. Widow's Harbor 20. Ghost Ship 21. Skull and Crossbones

Nox Arcana: Phantom of The High SeasA phantom ship appears in the fog, torn sails, cruising eerily through the night underneath the full moon's blue light, as the ghosts of maritime swashbucklers arise from the deep to tell of deadly adventures...

Based upon the travels of an accursed vessel named The Tempest, and beginning with an appropriately gruff narration as if spoken by Black Beard himself, setting the tone for this morbid excursion [complete with the chanting of "Yo-Ho..." in the background}, Phantoms of The High Seas is a splendid Gothic translation of Pirate lore, with choirs and sound-effects to richly compliment and accentuate the tenebrous orchestrations. Also featured is a haunting vocal piece entitled "Fate of The Tempest" sung by 'Ty Cook', which recounts the tale.

The lavishly decorated booklet is your treasure map to the musickal gems herein, filled with darksome illustrations from the quest which will accompany you along your journey.

'Neath the black banner of the Jolly Roger do we sail for gold and treasures unimagined in splendor. May greed be your guide, and may the cleverest survive to enjoy the booty!

Nox Arcana: Grimm Tales
{XLIII A.S. Monolith}

Grimm Tales by Nox ArcanaThe mysterious figure sits upon the throne-like chair, decorated in ghoulish fane... the dusty leathery storybook framed in silver cracks open, letting forth a swirling vortex to enrapture the reader into its multi-dimensional fetters of the imagination, traveling forth into shadowy worlds of a Dark Witch's spell... the fireplace glows strangely this night, transmutating forms in the hell fires, warming the flesh with delightfully chilling sound-scapes and enchanted tales...

Based upon the eerie stories of The Brothers Grimm and released in the Walpurgisnacht season, Nox Arcana wonderfully manifests the sinsations to compliment one's own experience when submerged herein.

Along with the "Gregorian Shadow Choir", Christine Filipak participates as the voice of Sinistra the Witch, who from her castle, sternly warns the wayfarer who veers too close to her domain, and the hag crone mixing up her bubbling brew. From The Hollow, An enchanted orchestral garden comes alive with the blackest Magic, weaving its nightmarish influence, compelling towards the labyrinth of dreams.

Joseph Vargo's splendid artwork splendidly graces the diabolically ornate booklet, accompanied by poetic descriptions of the fearsome adventures within, creating a truly gratifying multi-sensory saturation.

From antique portals of timelessness generated with the infernal sonic machine herein, Grimm Tales cascade along the daemonic mind to enhance One's haunted atmosphere, invoking the muses to dance in the darkness of the flickering chamber.

Your adventure is about to begin... enter at your own risk!


Shadow of The Raven
Nox Arcana

Track Listing: 1. Darkest Hour 2. Melancholia 3. Descent Into Madness 4. The House of Usher 5. Madeline's Lament 6. Haunted Memories 7. Annabel Lee 8. Legacy of Sorrow 9. The Black Cat 10. The Cask of Amontillado 11. Mysteries of the Night 12. Midnight Dreary 13. The Raven 14. Morbid Reminiscence 15. Lenore 16. A Dream Within A Dream 17. The Tell-Tale Heart 18. Murders in the Rue Morgue 19. The Pit and the Pendulum 20. Masque of the Red Death 21. Nevermore

Nox Arcana: Shadow of The RavenA superb unleashing by the minstrels of the macabre, dedicated to master of the macabre, Edgar Allen Poe. His most prominent tales are musickally portrayed herein, gloriously gloomy symphonies combined with accentuating sound effects, ghostly arias, phantom chanting, as well as narrations to spin on the victrola in one's darkened chamber, complimenting the haunted environment herein quite well.

You can hear the wind as it howls outside the chamber door, accompanied by the ghastly squawks of the devilish raven; the swing of the pendulum's blade slowly descending upon its victim, the deep pounding of that tell-tale heart, the terrible apparition of the red death, the banshee-like wailing of the spectral black cat, and the eerily melancholy, bitter-sweet echoes of love-lorn memories resurrected...

One can picture the dimensions of Poe's mind which open from dusty leather jackets; at the bidding of the ornate portrait, these wonderfully strange orchestrations float through the room across cobwebbed library shelves, opening musty yellowed pages like misty fingers aglow in the darkness, turning the pages from one horror-laden mystery to another...

The elegantly decorated booklet displays Vargo's sublime Gothic artistry, visually enhancing the morbid legacy of Poe's tenebrous imagination. A sublime listen and contemplation overall.

Nox Arcana
Blood of The Dragon

Nox Arcana: Blood of The DragonThe theme of this invigorating Classical / Mideival opus is that of Fantasy-Action-Adventure, with music reminiscent of Highlander at some points, with a distinct Dungeons & Dragons flavor. A veritable soundtrack to warrior escapades into realms of myth and legend, dragons and knights, misty lochs, Sorcerers and maidens fair. Great musick to plunge the depths of the imagination to accompany many mental adventures, with narrations from a veritable "Over Watcher" leads you into places only dreamed of in dark lore fane, as well as actual sung vocals on one track.

The Ancient Legacy beckons The Mighty as The Quest Begins. The Citadel of Secrets awaits your entrance, towering from knotted vines and black iron gates. Can you translate the ancient runes encribed on yellowed scrolls to lead you to the next great discovery? Deep within the lambent temple dim by flickering torch flame, consult The Sorcerer to find the Treasure of The Four Crowns, where your journey twists along dark paths amidst the Highland Storm unto the enchanting Mist Loch where many mysteries dwell, transmutating fog swirls about you revealing ghostly forms and phantom faces; a gateway to the Underworld opens beyond The Mystic's Keep, leading down through the Stygian Depths where the Legions of Darkness await. Hellfires leap from below with vengeful demonic cries, whose denizens shall soon pillage the land. Steeds of Thunder shake the heavens and quake the earth in their terrible wrath as baneful specters emerge with eyes aglow in infernal light.

Rogue's Hollow there dwells shrouded in a haze of ancient spell as the Warrior's Dawn glows red, an omen of what is to come. With hearts pounding, The Siege yields Dragon Riders sillhouetted upon the horizon, as the fearsome Flame Tongue spreads across the bloodied land. Defenders of The Realm rise up to battle these shadowy phantoms with war-cries echoing through the ages. Within the marble-laden Chamber of The Immortals, the living gods are present, and with the Blood of The Dragon, hail the Eternal Champions evermore.

As usual, the actual CD and booklet are splendidly elegant, filled with marvelous artwork {including a topographical map of Draconia}, and accentuating storylines.

Dare you step through the arcane portal into fabled dangerous dimensions to face nightmarish creatures and bewitching beings who rise up from the Stygian depths? Can you solve the riddle and survive to become part of the legend, or perish where many mighty have fallen...


I was pleased to receive an autographed CD and poster with My order, and the sentiment is mutual.
Nox Arcana
Carnival of Lost Souls
"Welcome ladies and gentlemen to the circus of the strange, the sideshow of the sinister and the theatre of the bizarre... Cast your eyes upon cruel oddities of nature and behold monstrous creatures rising from the depths of the abyss. Hear the dark wisdom of gypsy soothsayers as they unveil things yet to come, and marvel with awe and dismay at unbelievable death-defying acts that teeter on the very brink of doom. Leave the mundane world behind, for those who visit this festival of phantasms are never the same again..."

Nox Arcana: Carnival of Lost SoulsThe diabolical Ring Leader bids you come forward, you are welcomed to immerse yourself within the dark carnival worlde of olde, a phantom circus of wonders and horrors wherein patrons' curiosities become overwhelming, to sometimes gain the better of them and become part of the sideshow...

Bewitching orchestrations accompany the wayfarer, spellbinding the observer to enter the fetters of ominous tents containing myriad spectacles of nightmarish fane. Compelling oddities possess the mind further into the darkness displayed before your eyes...

Tricks and treats lay waiting 'round every corner, collected the world over from timeless eras, echoing ghostly whispers to present the greatest show on earth...

An absolutely enchanting opus; besides the brilliant orchestrations, Carnival of Lost Souls manages to conjure the underlying sensation of this Magical world to create a haunting frame which enhances the experience ever more. One could almost perceive the sights, scents and sounds therein - from laughing phantom children to the crack of the lion-tamer's whip, to the fortune teller's enthralling reading, and the breathing calliope, played as if with a life of its own...

Freaks! Jesters! Exotic creatures from foreign lands... Pay the toll at the gate, at the mere cost of your soul... this is The Devil's Carnivale, The Circus Diabolique... you will never want to leave...


Nox Arcana

Nox Arcana: TransylvaniaWithin a black coach, travel down the dark oak-arched path into the world of the timeless Dracula legend, unto infamous Transylvania, where nightmares come alive down torch-lit halls, and cobwebbed doors are opened to reveal blood-soaked horrors lain hidden for centuries.

Within the ornate booklet are depicted our musickal hosts: Joseph Vargo's Baphomet medallion bodes well with the chalice held as if in an indulgent toast, and William Piotrowski sports a splendid wolf's head cane. The rest of the diatribe features artistry and quotes from Van Helsing and Jonathan Harker, which combines in a psychodramatic narrative enhancing the overall creation.

'Transylvania' is a wonderfully dramatic musickal escapade into the imagination of Bram Stoker and Nox Arcana blended together, providing a most remarkable soundtrack to the classic tale. Another magnificent opus to accompany one's nocturnal activities, empowering the atmosphere by candlelight and incense's curl. This musickal release calls to mind masquerade balls, elegant accoutrement, and noble opulence in all of its splendor, certainly complimenting one's own haunted Manor.

Rating: 5/5.

Nox Arcana

Impressive musickal accompaniment serving as a fitting tribute to H.P. Lovecraft's Cthulhu Mythos. Magnificenty dark and brooding, narrations and incantations enhance this sonic novel as the lavishly decorated booklet serves as a veritable playlist, as phantasmagoric visions manifest in the shadows of your mind. They are as 'real' as you wish them to be...

A decidedly Middle-Eastern influence is noticeable here, with sporadic sounds of sitars and finger cymbals join to create a serpentine embience reminiscent of an ancient temple. The prime Maskim Xul Yog-Sothoth, Azathoth, Nyarlathotep, Dagon, and of course, Cthulhu are specifically addressed, with character descriptions of each. [sans Shub-Niggurath...]

Suspend disbelief and open the gates of the swirling abyss when the CD case is unsealed and The Old Ones call up from the depths. Behold, the stars are as one...

Rating: 5/5.

* Necronimicon: Some Facts About a Fiction by Magus Peter H. Gilmore.

Nox Arcana
Darklore Manor

"Woe befalls all who dwell within Darklore Manor, for those who have met their fate within this blighted place are cursed to forever wander its unhallowed halls."

A magnificent treasure found, a veritable key to Darklore Manor. Traveling through the thick foliage of black forest underneath the moon's gaze, the fog increases as you near the omninous Mansion - at the iron gate, a phantasmic gentleman beckons one to enter the gloriously gloomy estate... and enter we will... there is no turning back. A strange chanting fills your mind as vertigo overtakes the consciousness, the shadows deepen beyond the creaking door, as the candlebrum is lit, and now into the labyrinthine hallways.

The musick is repleat with a mystical ambience flowing to take you into this infamous legend. The booklet is spooktacular in its artistry, relating the tale as well as poetry. As revealed by a yellowed scroll, seems Mr. Damon Darklore had been experimenting with some Dark Sorcery, uncovered by the swinging bookcase which leads into a secret chambre. A wonderful surprise awaits on track 21, so keep listening. The astute will discover the interactive booklet contains various clues and indications relating to both the story and the music itself.

Travel back in time to witness the events that occurred once upon a time in the theatre of your mind, allowing the dread muses to rise. Darklore Manor is a welcomed addition to aurally haunt one's own 'unhallowed halls".

{Keep in mind that this is 'part one' of the subsequent 'Necronomicon' opus, which reveals the nefarious source of events. Extended explanations of both are available at the Nox Arcana site}.

Nox Arcana
Winter's Knight

Winter's KnightHere is Solstice musick for our kind - every song geared towards a winter theme, ergo, the title "Winter's Knight", displaying a black winged Knight wielding a sword in the midst of the graceful falling of first snow...

There are a couple of traditional tunes herein such as "Veni, Veni, Emmanuel", "God Rest Ye Merry Gentleman", and even a folk song "Coventry Carol" floats through the forest from an arcane time long ago... yet they are done in a manner that is most mystically enchanting - veritably 'darkened' to taste. Haunted Winter cantibles, to be sure.

The overall impression derived is that of an abandoned windblown cathedral still resonating its ghostly orchestras, both angelic and monk-like choirs, with phantom fingers at the splenderous organ creating the soundtrack of nightmares and dreams in this magical season, spread forth across the year through. There are occasional inclusions of classical guitar, distant church bells, howling wind, and poetic narrations enriches the opus creating one-of-a-kind compositions ideal for Solstice celebration and beautifully evocative ponderation.

Rating: 5/5.