I suppose it was inevitable. I mean, nobody so far in the paranormal field has tried making money off of it, so I guess it had to start sometime. Yes, that is sarcasm. And now, because the music industry doesn’t already suck enough, and because not enough people are into the paranormal simply to make a buck, Zak Bagans is making an album.
Zak Bagans, host of Travel Channel‘s popular paranormal series ”Ghost Adventures,” has joined forces with Lords of Acid’s Praga Khan for one of the most intriguing music releases ever produced, NecroFusion, due out October 23, just in time for Halloween.
Each one of the eleven tracks on NecroFusion not only tells the story of a departed soul who, for whatever reason, has not crossed over, but includes an actual audio message from the spirit – “electronic voice phenomena,” or EVP. Armed with his SB7 Spirit Box, a recording device well-known by devotes of the “Ghost Adventures” series, Bagans has encountered inhabitants of the spirit world during his paranormal investigations, reached out to communicate with and question them, and then, when a spirit chose to communicate, he recorded the spirits’ EVPs.
For NecroFusion, Bagans worked closely with Praga Khan, a legendary pioneer of post-industrial-electronic dance music. The two structured every song around a specific incident when Bagans had a ghostly encounter, and worked to have the music and lyrics reflect the tone of the spirits’ voices. Bagans wrote the lyrics and provided the earthbound spoken word/vocals for the tracks, while Khan wrote and recorded the music at his Brussels studio between mid-2011 and early summer 2012.“Working on this album was one great experience from start to finish,” said Khan. ”When Zak came up with the idea to record an album with EVPs, I was both surprised and excited. I had absolutely no idea what to expect. When he sent me the audio files that he had recorded with his Spirit Box and I listened to them, I really freaked out. This was scary stuff.”
“For me,” said Bagans, “spirit communication is the most powerful communication I’ve ever encountered. The most powerful messages are delivered through music, and music truly influences the way you feel, it stimulates the emotional memories of your life. With ‘NecroFusioin,’ we’ve blended together these two powerful forms of communication – spirit and music. And the earthbound spirits have a lot to say.”
The result is abstract, sinister, illuminating and haunting.
“Poor Pearl” tells the tale of 22-year old Pearl Bryan from Indiana who was murdered and decapitated in 1896. Her headless body was found not far from a slaughterhouse, a site that some speculate was a place of devil worship and dark rituals, and is haunted by one of her killers. Today it is a club called Bobby Mackey’s Music World, near Cincinnati, and known as “the most haunted nightclub in the USA.” Bagans and his “Ghost Adventures” crew have spent a fair amount of time there, and during one of his Spirit Box sessions, he stated to a spirit, “I think Pearl is safe now from her killers.” The spirit’s chilling response was recorded: ”Is she?” and that original audio is woven into this track.
At 3AM every night for three weeks, Bagans conducted recording sessions in his “home dungeon” where Poltergeist activity is common. He recorded two spirits there, and what they communicated is what the track “In My Dungeon” was built upon. For “Good and Evil,” Bagans established intelligent, two-way communication with a spirit, and he carries on an extended conversation with another spirit on “Immortal Portal.”
“On some of the songs,” Bagans explained, “you’ll hear me communicating with the spirits. Probably the most emotional track on the album for me is ‘Sing with Me.’ I deliberately asked a female spirit to sing for me, and she did, we actually got her to sing.”<
“Room 20,” “Dark Frequency,” “Eleven Heaven,” and “Dead Awaiting” and just some of the other spooky musical offerings.
“Maybe it was a coincidence, but a lot of strange stuff happened during the making of the album,” added Khan. ”Audio files started to disappear, files that I never deleted, the computer started to crash daily, my sound technician got really sick a few days after the start of the album and ended up in the hospital. But the strangest thing of all was that the cat who practically lived at our studio, simply refused to enter the building while we were working on the ‘NecroFusion’ album.”
Big fans of each other’s work – Khan catches “Ghost Adventures” on Travel Channel in Belgium, while Bagans discovered Lords of Acid while in high school – they connected via Twitter last year and began to discuss working together. For their first collaboration, Bagans recorded vocals for “Paranormal Energy,” a song for the Lords of Acid album Deep Chills (2012), working with Grammy-winning producer Chris Vrenna (Nine Inch Nails, Marilyn Manson). The song hit the Top 5 on iTunes’ Electronic Music Dance chart.
“I want more people to hear what the spirits have to say,” said Bagans. ”Spirits want to be heard, that’s why they’re not at rest. They want to be heard.”
Wow, just wow. And in time for Halloween, too. I’m pretty patient, I give people the benefit of the doubt, and I can forgive a lot. But the douchebaggery that is coming from these paranormal TV shows lately is really getting out of hand.