Poe : Haunted

Spooky New Yorker's family affair

Around 1995, shortly after releasing her debut album ‘Hello’, lost child of New York Poe discovered in storage a box of audio tapes of her father, a documentary film-maker who’d died in 1993. On a “journey towards intimacy” she spent the next five years sampling the tapes for this second album. Which, considering this is also an accompanying piece to her brother Mark Z Danielewski’s terrifying debut novel [I]House Of Leaves[/I], should make this a musical [I]Blair Witch Project [/I]bearing a warning to listen to it in plastic underwear.

Little girls laughing far away in the woods, the voice of a dead man on the phone, the tap-tap-tap on your window. BOO! Ha ha! No, really, in the last ten minutes your correspondent has eaten a Pop Tart that was scarier than ‘Haunted’. The samples are spooky enough – teenage Poe leaves her mother an answerphone message to say her father has died on ‘Exploration B’ – but when the occasionally impressive songs kick in, we’re suddenly watching the goth slot at Lilith Fair.

Imagine Sophie Ellis-Bextor singing the hits of Garbage and you’ve pinned ‘Wild’ and ‘5&1/2 Minute Hallway’, while the rest wants to be a vampire Polly Harvey but comes out as Sheryl Crow in a ski mask. Look behind you! There’s a copy of ‘Stories From The City…’!

Mark Beaumont