Glow Clouds and floating figures; A podcast review.
September 27, 2016
Filed under Opinion
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“Weird at last, weird at last! God almighty, weird at last!”
So starts another episode of the radio show Welcome to Night Vale, and no quote describes this podcast better. With hooded figures, a vague yet menacing government agency, and the occasional fanboying of radio host Cecil Baldwin over his lover are only a few factors that make fictional podcast Welcome to Night Vale a unforgettable experience. Although it is often compared to the works of H.P Lovecraft, Stephen King, Lemony Snicket, and the Twilight Zone, but when the listener takes a closer look none are really like this unique radio show. I have confidence in my words when I say it is nothing like I have listened to before. Welcome to Night Vale is well worth a listen—although probably not after dark for those who live in a small neighborhood and are spooked easily.
Cecil Palmer’s calming, deadpan tones could usually make a cure for even the worst insomnia, but it is rather hard to sleep when Welcome to Night Vale quickly becomes one of the strangest “radio shows” out there. It is actually a podcast, released twice a month and voiced by Cecil Baldwin, a man whose speaking voice is so calm and collected that listeners can’t help but do a double-take when he announces Night Vale’s latest attack of the deadly librarians, or that wheat and wheat by products are now banned due to becoming malevolent spirits.
Although his voice may seem emotionlessness and bland at first, it quickly is apparent that it is not the case. Even in the first episode, you catch the subtle, and not so subtle, changes in Cecil’s voice as he excitedly rambles about the charming yet dorky scientist with amazing hair, or the latest news on Khoshekh, the floating cat in the men’s bathroom. He speaks to the fangirl or fanboy inside of all of the listeners, even going as far as to talk about his tumblr and social media pages where he post fanfictions and pictures of his cat. Every episode brings a new surprise, and the the only true thing you can depend on is “The Weather,” which music from indie artists and such as Dan Bern and John Vanderslice, and the songs are about as strange as the podcast. This podcast will leave the leave the listener on the edge of their seat with every episode, which is one of the reasons I am so fond of the podcast.
This lovely podcast is available on Itunes, Spotify, and youtube, as well as any podcast app such as Podbay. The recordings of Live Shows cost money, but they’re affordable. The live shows come to Missouri once a year, and if fans are lucky enough, they may be able to see one of them. There probably won’t be any mysterious hooded figures or Lovecraftian monsters lurking in the shadows, but I am not promising anything. As for the podcast itself, I give it a solid 5 out of 5 pairs of earbuds, and would recommend it to anyone looking for something different or just wants to waste time.