Sunday, 11 November 2012

Audiophiles - take note...

It's been a while, so another podcast round-up is in order!.... The podcasts I'm listening to at the moment are roughly falling into three camps: Audio Drama, Literary Reviews, and Podcasts about boardgames. So here's what's been on the mp3 player over the last few months...

We're Alive (the zombie survival audio drama serial) is just about to reach the end of Season 3...I can't really say much about this without giving away any spoilers, but things are not going well for the survivors! The writing, the acting and the production on this are absolutely fantastic, well worth checking out if you haven't already... all the back episodes are available for download from their website.

19 Nocturne Boulevard is the home of Julie Hoverson and her unstoppable audio horror drama production machine.. over the last few months she's put out some excellent shows, her own adaptations of H.P.Lovecraft's THE RATS IN THE WALLS and THE SHUNNED HOUSE are both excellent, and her FATAL GIRL series (currently 4 stories) is great fun - her own audio version of a  dark supernatural Japanese Anime series with strong female characters...

On the "literary review" side of things, The H.P.LOVECRAFT LITERARY PODCAST is still going strong, Chad and Chris have exhausted all of H.P.Lovecraft's stories now, and have moved on to talking about stories by other authors. Their new criteria is that these stories were all mentioned by Lovecraft in his famous essay "Supernatural Horror in Literature". So far they have covered:
"The Repairer of Reputations" by Robert W. Chambers
"The Yellow Sign" by Robert W. Chambers
"The Yellow Wallpaper" by Charlotte Perkins Gilman
"The Monkey's Paw" by W. W. Jacobs
"The Upper Berth" by F. Marion Crawford
"The Signal Man" by Charles Dickens
"The Great God Pan" by Arthur Machen
and they have just started on "The Willows" by Algernon Blackwood. The H.P.Podcast guys have also decided to start charging a subscription fee for their content. The fee is very small ($6.66 every 3 months) and in my opinion is worth every penny.

The Double Shadow podcast folks, taking inspiration from the H.P.L.L.P, are covering the dark literature of Clark Ashton Smith. They have just finished talking about his "Averoigne" series which were all set in an alternative medieval France populated by necromancers, werewolves, vampires and batrachian witches.... with episode 15 they are moving on to the "Poseidonis" stories....

A Podcast to the Curious - The M.R.James literary podcast, doesn't come out as regularly as the previous ones mentioned, but this is quality stuff, and well worth the wait! They have recently done "An Episode of Cathedral History", "The Diary of Mr.Poynter" and "The Residence of Whitminster". Very enjoyable creepy stuff - and very well researched. They've also done a nice little interview with Robert Lloyd Parry, a performer of M.R.James stories... very interesting indeed - inspired me to get some tickets for one of his Christmas one man shows when he's playing not too far from here at Buxton Opera House... looking forward to that!!

The guys at NEWS FROM PNAKOTUS are still doing their news show about anything Lovecraft / Cthulhu related. It's still a great fun show with loads of info, quality content and knowledgeable presenters, but recently they have done something which to me is VERY ANNOYING. They have changed their file format from MP3 to shiny new MP4, which means if you've got some kind of new fangled expensive listening device you can get nice images to accompany your listening pleasure. Or on the other hand, if you're like me and have an a nice little "old" MP3 player, you can't listen to it at all. I listen to quite a lot of audio whilst I'm at work, or when I'm doing stuff around the house after the kids have gone to bed. So to listen to this now I have to put time aside to be sat in front of my computer doing nothing else - which I will now have to do as it's such a great show. Well maybe it's just me. Bah.

So onto the boardgame related podcasts... there are loads of these, and you can't do much better than going to the DICE TOWER and checking out all the ones on the Dice Tower Network... The Dice Tower podcast itself is great, and I also recommend The LITTLE METAL DOG SHOW, a UK boardgames podcast. Micheal the presenter has just got back from this years Essen gaming show, so he's done a ton of interesting interviews from there... two podcasts that I've started listening to lately which are really funny, and concentrate on the less "serious" side of boardgaming, are FLIP THE TABLE and THE GAME NIGHT GUYS.

THE GAME NIGHT GUYS is a podcast in which the presenters Brian and Curtis get together every week, sometimes with other friends too, and they tackle a boardgame. More often than not the games are weird games they've picked up from charity shops (Hello Kitty Big Roll Bingo!), but they will play modern designer games too. Whilst they are playing, the guys chat about their lives and what they've been up to lately. It's all great fun and very engaging. I love it!

FLIP THE TABLE - "a podcast about The Other Side of Board Games. Most board game shows focus on the latest-and-greatest, or time-tested classics. We have taken it upon ourselves to comb our local charity shops and salvage stores for the other stuff...we're talking licensed cash-grabs, kids games that kids are too smart for, gimmicky games with strange (and only occasionally functional) gadgets, and all the other games that tend to gather dust in the back of closets..." so far the Flip The Table crew have played: Transformers, American Idol, WWE DVD boardgame, Lingo DVD game, G.I.Joe boardgame, Heartthrob, Halo DVD game, Pac-man cardgame, Donkey Kong boardgame, Donald Trump game, Robocop VCR game, Nightmare VCR game, Ewok boardgame, Gone Birding, Dexter boardgame, and Mystery Mansion....  after playing the games they go indepth into dissecting the mechanics of the games, and then end up playing a fun quiz of their own silly design inspired by the themes of the games they've just played. These guys have a lot of knowledge about boardgame mechanics,which lends this to be a very interesting and fun show at the same time.

I think that's about it for now... apart from to mention the Halloween special of The Gaming Gang, which has a couple of really creepy Old Time Radio shows tagged on to the end.... it will give you the willies!!

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