Scary’s Voices – Sound Bites
Week Ending 25th September 2020
Sometimes, when shadows stretch and the house is quiet, I hear voices. They tell me about ghosts and creatures of the night. They whisper sinister tales making my skin crawl. Sometimes they even tell me to do things, like watch certain movies or read specific books. Where do these strange voices come from? Podcasters, of course. But I like to call them Scary’s Voices.
Welcome to Sound Bites, where I highlight the best podcasts I’ve heard through the week. Here’s a quick breakdown of my rating system:
Scream of the Week – only one podcast can take this spot each week, and it represents the best of what’s haunted my earbuds, like a 5-Star rating.
Shivers – these shows are great, and not only do I recommend you give them a listen, but I’ve marked them down to listen to again in the future.
Goosebumps – podcasts I liked and will probably try again, but they didn’t quite knock my socks off.
If I listen to something that didn’t make me scream, give me shivers or even goosebumps, they won’t be listed here.
Now let’s get to it!
My Scream of the Week goes to:
Jensen & Holes: The Murder Squad
For the second week in a row, a true-crime podcast has taken my Scream of the Week! Author Carolyn A. Drake sent me a suggestion to listen to Jensen & Holes: The Murder Squad and it was fantastic. If you’re a fan of Unsolved Mysteries, you’ll want to add this podcast to your playlist.
I listened to “Episode 67: The Search for Mr. Cruel,” an open case from Melbourne, Australia about the string of abductions and assaults on young girls, which ended with the murder of Karmein Chan. Much like the TV show Forensic Files, this podcast focuses on clues that may lead to the capture of the perpetrator rather than the horrific details of the crimes themselves, which makes this a great podcast for anyone with an interest in true crime but doesn’t want to hear explicit information of the assaults.
With extensive experience in solving crimes, both hosts, Jensen and Holes, bring a unique perspective to presenting the cases and hope that their episodes will bring awareness and more information to police forces involved in these unsolved crimes. Billy Jensen is an investigative journalist who has written crime stories for publications like Rolling Stone, was producer and investigator for the series Crime Watch Daily and also helped complete the book I’ll Be Gone in the Dark after Michelle McNamara’s death. Paul Holes is a retired cold case investigator from Contra Costa County, California and worked on cases such as Zodiac, Golden State Killer, and the disappearance of Jaycee Dugard.
Jensen & Holes: The Murder Squad uploads new episodes on Mondays, with runtimes of 1 to 1.5 hours, and they post additional case details on their website: www.themurdersquad.com
Now for the Shivers!
The Professor Frenzy Show was one of the first podcasts I ever listened to and I always enjoy catching up with their new episodes. In it, hosts Gerry Green and Chris Karnes provide quick reviews of comic books, new and old. While not all the comics they cover fall within the horror genre, quite a few of them do, and I really enjoy the fact that many of the books they review are from indie creators. Full episodes, ranging from 45 minutes to an hour, are available on Wednesdays, and they also have mini-episodes called “Memory Minute” where Chris gets nostalgic about things like first album purchases, how he spent his allowance and reliving other aspects of growing up. You can find out more about The Professor Frenzy Show by visiting: www.professorfrenzy.com
A few weeks ago, horror author Michael Sellars suggested I give a listen to Does the Dog Die in This? and I started out with “Episode 16 – Devil’s Creek with Todd Keisling.” In this entertaining podcast, host Glenn Parker interviews horror authors, talking about life as a writer, life outside of writing, and with Keisling there was a hilarious segment where Parker asked his guest to decipher Aussie lingo. Most episodes range from 1 to 2 hours, with new content appearing twice a month. Pop over to the Does the Dog Die in This? website to learn more: www.doesthedogdieinthis.com
Through horror author and avid podcast listener Isaac Thorne, I discovered The Last Knock, a horror movie review show from Crash Palace Productions. In episode “Graveyard Shift 30th Anniversary,” hosts Billy Crash and Jonny Numb talked about this movie adaptation of Stephen King’s short story of the same name from his Night Shift collection. They discussed the storyline, themes, cast, and setting, picking up on details you might have missed or not thought about before. I also found it interesting that both Crash and Numb initially disliked the movie, but after re-watching it years later they gained a new perspective. Episodes are uploaded every Sunday and run about an hour in length. Links to listen to The Last Knock, as well as written movie reviews can be found here: www.crashpalaceproductions.com/the-last-knock/
And lastly, the Goosebumps.
My final podcast this week is Strength in Numbers, which I found on Instagram. While it has nothing to do with the horror genre, the show’s message that together we can overcome anything is certainly something we could all use a little more of these days. Strength in Numbers is hosted by retired US Colonel Tim Nye and Neal Keohane who volunteers with organisations helping the Special Operations Forces community, and they strive to talk to guests with stories of grit, determination, and perseverance. I listened to “Episode 15” with guest John McAleavey who discusses his serious spinal cord injury in 1992, his recovery, and how he refocused his dreams. I think this podcast is still finding their way to deliver the best audio presentation and finding the right audience, but the content is uplifting, and I’m sure I’ll give this another listen in the future. The average runtime per episode is about an hour, and if you’re looking for something inspirational visit their website at www.podcaststrength.com
That’s a wrap for this week’s Sound Bites!
Thanks so much to the awesome podcast listeners and creators who have been sending me terrific recommendations. Keep them coming via the comments section below, or direct messaging on Twitter or Instagram (links below). I can’t promise I’ll enjoy every podcast you throw my way, but I’ll give everyone a fair shot.
Remember, I’m all about scary things and spooky podcasts are what I’m after. Content focused on reviewing horror movies and horror books, true paranormal encounters, facts about cryptids, true crimes, and original scary stories are exactly what I want to hear.
Can’t wait to listen to all the dark podcasts you fine fiends suggest, and I’m looking forward to presenting you with even more Scary’s Voices next Friday.
J. A. Sullivan is a horror writer and paranormal enthusiast, based in Brantford, ON, Canada. Attracted to everything non-horror folks consider strange, she’s spent years as a paranormal investigator, has an insatiable appetite for serial killer information, and would live inside a library if she could.
Her latest short story can be found in Don’t Open the Door: A Horror Anthology (out July 26, 2019), and other spooky tales can be found on her blog. She’s currently writing more short stories, a novel, and reading as many dark works as she can find.
You can follow J. A. on Twitter @ScaryJASullivan
Check out her blog https://writingscaredblog.wordpress.com
Find her on Instagram www.instagram.com/j.a_sullivan