Celestial/Chthonic by Ben Arzate
"Angel Lust" is a dreamy, experimental blackgaze exploration of sex, death, and responding to traumatic events. The staccato rhythm pounds along and melds into a hazy and disturbing atmosphere.
"Outhouse Boy" is a disgusting, tongue-in-cheek tale reminiscent of a lofi goregrind track. Originally premiered in a reading at the Killercon Gross Out Contest, this gurgling procession of revolting imagery is now available for mass consumption.
Darkly Written and Two Great Stories
This is a book on two short tales. The first one, Angel Lust is a twisted little take that blends reality with fiction as the character Sylvia is doused and absorbed in a role. The details are stunning and the perspective is dark and twisted. The second story, Outhouse Boy, was somewhat of an origins story. It involves shit, Twinkies, and more, blended nicely with a 1980's slasher film-esque cherry on top. You have to read to appreciate Arzate's style.
Two solid stories written in very different styles. I enjoyed them both, thought they were imaginative and original. Recommend for SURE!
Heavenly or Hellish? You Decide.
Celestial/Cthonic provides the reader with two vastly different stories delivering a familiar hallucinatory characteristic one might expect from Arzate, if one has been exposed to some of his other writing. Angel Lust escorts the reader on a journey that blurs the lines between fiction and reality, not only for the reader but for Sylvia as well. Is there something strange taking place? Is this some recurring, disorienting nightmare or is the actress simply supplying us with a spectacular example of method acting? I know which interpretation I choose. You'll have to find your own. Outhouse Boy is equal parts heartbreaking and disgusting, telling the tale of an unwanted pregnancy and an infant cast away in filth. Surviving, against all odds, the infant grows into a young man hoping for the same companionship we all crave. These two stories definitely show the reader both the range and distinct flair in style and substance that will continue to mark Arzate as a fantastic writer.
Two short pieces, the first taking the form of a recursive (recurring?) nightmare which is quite effective. The second a gross out tale of human waste. Both are powerful in their own ways, and I highly recommend you check this (and Ben's other work here on Godless and forthcoming from Madness Heart Press) out!