Blackthorn Asylum

Dare to explore the shadows of a forsaken sanitarium that is haunted by the souls of the dead and plagued by the dark essence of evil.

Price $12.00

Music written and performed by Joseph Vargo.
Engineered by William Piotrowski.
Label: Monolith Graphics
21 tracks. 64 mins.
UPC: 884502110524
Release Date: 06-21-2009

Venture beyond the threshold of madness...

Dare to explore the shadows of a forsaken sanitarium that is haunted by the souls of the dead. High upon the rocky cliffs overlooking the Miskatonic River, the hollow edifice of Blackthorn Asylum stands as a bleak monument to the horrors that once lurked within its desolate halls. Originally built as a sanitarium for the criminally insane, the asylum gained a grim reputation after dark rumors began to spread throughout the area. Whispered tales told of horrible experiments conducted upon Blackthorn's most violent and deranged psychopaths in an attempt to extract the essence of evil.
      Over the decades, the torments inflicted upon the inmates resulted in unlocking the demons from their minds, but as a horrific consequence, the tortuous experimentation also unleashed the vile malediction that now infests the abandoned corridors.
      This sinister soundscape offers an interactive murder mystery, with ghostly melodies, pulse-pounding orchestrations and spine-chilling sound effects to set a dark, nightmarish mood.

Press Reviews

Blackthorn Asylum 8/10

Nox Arcana has once again proved that still they have a great sense for originality and that their ideas are still coming even after 10 releases so far. I dare to say that this is their most creepy and eerie record to date.

Blackthorn Asylum

This is a must for your Halloween music collection!!!

Blackthorn Asylum 5

Based upon Lovecraftian idealizations, with a strong From Beyond influence, Blackthorn Asylum also calls to mind the characters of Dr. Victor Frankenstein, Dr. Jeckyll & Mr. Hyde, and even Dr. Moreau.

Blackthorn Asylum

Nox Arcana’s particular musical niche could be termed "scary music." It’s more classy than that, though. They combine classical elements and goth stylings into a sound that is both creepy and beautiful.

Blackthorn Asylum 5

Their creepiest selection of music to date. Nox Arcana gets more and more sophisticated with the way they leverage theatrical scoring with memorable phrasing, melodies, and low throaty undertones that remind you what an evil, gothic sanitarium might be all about. This is not a song collection for the faint-of-heart.

Blackthorn Asylum

As always, I just loved it. It amazes me every time how you can come up with a new theme and just run with it.

Blackthorn Asylum 5

There are many imitators out there, but no one seems to be able to capture the pure black magic that these gents conjure up. This isn't some garish Halloween sound effects collection, but a frightening commingling of poetry, art and sound blended perfectly by master craftsmen well versed in the colors of dreams black as night.

Listener Reviews

Blackthorn Asylum 5Delightfuly Demented!

Once again Nox Arcana shuts off the lights, grabs you, straps you to a table and turns up the creep factor by delivering jolt after jolt of spine-tingling orchestrations to haunt your dreams. A fantastically fearsome selection.

Blackthorn Asylum 5This is one of my favorite albums!

Nox Arcana has yet to disappoint me! This is a great album. When I first heard Nox Arcana, it was love. When my ears heard the sweet sounds of devious vampires on Transylvania I was sold. Nox Arcana has some of the best compositions EVER WRITTEN. Buy this. You won't be disappointed. :] This is the best horror movie/halloween party/haunted house music EVER/ But do not be fooled. This is not your ordinary music... THIS IS NOX ARCANA.

Blackthorn Asylum 5Blackthorn Asylum is amazing!!

If you r on a limited itunes budget and would not like to purchase the whole album i reccomend these songs: 1. Sanity Slipping—the organ, xylophone, tolling bells, and angelic choirs in the background make this track a must buy! 2. Essence of Evil—boy!, what a powerful song! the monk-like choirs and the fierce, raw sound of this tune mixed in with powerful snare drums is amazing! 3. Hidden Horrors—this track is so mysterious... i love it b/c of the monk choirs throughout mixed with a driving piano and pipe organ dirges! 4. Fractured Memories—This song is great!... HINT: if u liked Harlequin's Lament on Carnival of Lost Souls, ur gonna love this song! 5. Dementia 13—this song is one of the most energetic songs on the album... mixed with driving violins and an echoing tolling bell, this song is one hell of a lot for ur ears... u will love it! 6. Frenzy—this song sounds just like someone is going crazy... it is such a good melody throughout the psycopathic track! 7. Threshold of Madness—this should be the theme of blackthorn asylum... The mix of the pipe organ, xylophone, choirs, and a heart pumping makes the album! 8. Creeper—give this song a chance... besides the admittedly creepy growling and laughing... a wavery female voice in the back and a driving piano is great... u just have to get used to the tone! It is very peaceful in my view! (besides the crackling thunder!) That's it... there r more songs that i love but these are better! hope i could help!

Blackthorn Asylum 5Love it!

The creep factor gets better and better! My fav music while writing my spells! ~M~A~G~I~C~A~L!

Blackthorn Asylum 4Nox Arcana Does It Again!

As another solid entry into Noz Arcana's library, Blackthorn Asylum goes for the disquieting and creepy tonality of such previous albums as Darklore Manor and Shadow of the Raven. Melody drives home the majority of songs here, such as "Darkness Falls" and "Spiders In the Attic", while sound effects are put to even greater use in tracks like "Shock Treatment" and "From Beyond." It's exceptionally layered, even for Nox Arcana, and it maintains diversity while not straying from these dark, sanity-eroding motifs; its stand-out tracks are "Dementia 13", "Spiders In the Attic", "Darkness Falls", "Essence of Evil", and "Fade to Black", which sounds eerily similar to the Halloween Theme. Its draw is a few filler tracks and the fact that a couple songs are similar enough that they could have been put together to make longer, more maddening pieces. But as it stands, Blackthorn Asylum is great; it's one of the most evocative and imagery-infused albums Nox Arcana has turned out. You can definitely see yourself thrashing about a room, struggling to hold on to a fragment of your mind while a deep, gothic chorus pounds within you, the lightning striking unnatural shadows against the walls, or cowering in a blackened corner, a frightful image creeping ever closer towards you. The music accomplishes such images, and it leaves you hungering for more.