Can you feel it?
There’s something happening right now.
All over the world people are plugging themselves into their communication-nodes, connecting themselves to the horror-net, and mainlining audio-scaries right through their ears and into their brains.
And that sound?
It’s the sound of millions of people crapping their pants.
You can now get your scare on during your commute, whilst washing the dishes, exercising, or even sexing one off ("the screaming only adds to the atmosphere, dear").
The possibilities are endless!
So join me as I have a little dip in the murky waters of the podcast pond and see what’s biting.
1. The NoSleep Podcast.
‘An online version of telling spooky stories around the campfire’.
Back in 2010 a new subreddit popped up called, NoSleep. People from all over the world submitted scary stories about their frightening experiences.
Enter David Cummings, musician, voice actor, scare-doctor.
Cummings, with the power of Reddit, decided to put these stories together into a fortnightly podcast which has been running ever since.
The show is broken up into seasons of 25 episodes and each episode showcases 4-5 short stories. I have to say the audio production is top notch and each episodes gets its own little piece of illustrated art. Nice!
2. We’re Alive
For Army Reserve Soldier Michael Cross, the world as he knew it ended in an instant. One minute, he’s in college, and in the next, rioters are roaming the highway around him, breaking into cars, and literally tearing people apart. This is the day the dead walk. This is the world of We’re Alive.
You like your stories told sequentially over a longer period of time? Then We're Alive, and its hellspawn, We’re Alive: Lockdown, are where you want to point your ears.
3. Welcome to Night Vale
How the hell does one describe Welcome to Night Vale? Other than to say that it’s a pillar of the fiction podcast establishment and it’s creepy, funny, and downright weird.
Presented as a radio show to the fictional town of Night Vale, it delights in reporting on the surreal news, announcements, and advertisements, from the desert town of the Southwestern United States.
4. Small Town Horror
Another one taking the seasonal approach. Each episode follows Ryan Jennings on his search for the truth hidden among the whispers and rumours of the small town of Crayton.
Top notch audio production with all the hoots, creaks, and scary squeaks you want out of a horror podcast.
"For a decade, Pseudopod has been bringing you the best short horror in audio form, to take with you anywhere."
These guys have been sacrificing iPods at the alter of Steve Jobs for ten whole years. In the digital world, this pretty much makes them historical creatures of myth and legend.
There’s more than 500 episodes of back catalogue to delve into here. Why not check out these recommended starting episodes.
BONUS: The Other Stories
Yeah, so it'd be remiss of me not to mention this weekly little slice of horror audio we produce called The Other Stories. Every week we bring you a short horror, sci-fi, thriller, or WTF story delivered right to your podcast feed.
I don’t want to blow the Horn of Kez too much but let’s just say, we’re proud of it. On top of that we’re going to be launching a sequential sideways show soon, along with a big Kez-approved relaunch.
My favourite episodes?
1. Alien (The very first episode, obvs!)
2. Death Throes (Time-travel mayhem)
3. The Heart of the Jungle (A coming of age tale that really got to me)
4. The Last Days of my Dad (My favourite, and most personal of mine)
I'm pretty sure I'm missing some out here. So if you've got any recommendations pop em in a comment below.
Also, what do you reckon to this whole renaiisacnce of horror audio storytelling? What do you think it's doing right? What would you like to see done differently?