Halloween. It's pretty maligned in the UK, which is a shame. I often wish that it was celebrated in the way that other countries do, but that's just me, I write a blog dedicated basically to darkness and night, what do you expect?

Anyway, I'm gonna show you some creepy-ass songs and talk a little about some creepy ass stories, so sit down, relax, and fire up these videos.

The Creatures - Don't Go To Sleep Without Me

I don't think I've ever heard a creepier song. Shit is straight scary. Anyway, listen to it and read Edgar Allen Poe's The Fall Of The House Of Usher. To me, this is a lot more powerful than what passes for a lot of loud noise-jump-after-jump-after-jump horror today.  You can read the whole short story here.

Edgar Allen Poe is pretty well known (The Simpsons have made many references to him throughout the series, including the classic in the original 'Treehouse Of Horror') but still gets overlooked quite often. There's no better author of short stories and gothic-era poetry than him. One you will probably know is The Raven, then there's The Black Cat, The Tell-Tale Heart, The Masque Of The Red Death, The Premature Burial and The Pit And The Pendulum. There you go, that's pretty much a whole night of reading to keep you entertained. Night Tracks coming at you in many formats.

Pantera - Floods

Whilst Poe has got to be my overall favourite, the title of author of my favourite short story goes to Charles Dickens with The Signal-Man. This is just straight up eerie, and it's left pretty ambiguous as to what's happening, something that really hooks me, sort of like not showing the monster/ghost/demon in the movie. You can fill in the gaps yourself. You can read the whole thing here and there's a pretty good TV adaptation floating around that was made by the BBC in the 70's. I'm sure you could find it on youtube.

For fans of copious use of the word 'Swine', I recommend William Hope Hodgson's The House On The Borderland. Also, you've got to check out Henry James' The Turn Of The Screw and Wilkie Collins' A Terribly Strange Bed (which I can't find a copy of online. Dig around).

Now it's going to get personal with a story of my own.

X-Files Theme Tune

So this is one thing I've seen in my life that I really can't explain. I'm not going to make any assumptions, aside from the fact that it was definitely a monster of sorts. Trust me on this, whatever it was, this is what I (and many others have seen).

It's Christmas time, and me, and my friends Aron and Jake have just finished a bit of Christmas shopping in Birmingham City Centre. We got off the train, and after leaving the station, decided to cut through the massive park behind my house to get to mine, rather than walk around it. We're just casually strolling along the path, when suddenly, we something moving through the park (not towards us). As it gets closer, we can see that this thing is all white, from head to toe, and is kind of gliding across the grass (we first thought it was somebody on a bike, I hope you can get an idea of how it was moving). So we're stood there watching this thing, and the most alarming thing is how tall it is. My estimate would be at least 7 foot and it had arms that were long as hell, held up in front of it.. Fortunately, it doesn't seem to notice as we watch it "glide" across the park, and we decide to run. Cut to some weeks later, and Aron and I have been to the pub, and after having a few, we decide to go and look for the monster again, in our heads knowing that we wouldn't see it again. OR SO WE THOUGHT! We get to the entrance of the park, laughing and joking about the "monster" when suddenly, about 100 or so metres away, we some thing tall and white. SHEEEEEEEEEIT. We stood there, not too far from the entrance, and we decide to go a little closer. As we starting moving towards it, it crouches down. We froze. It stood up again, moved a little closer, then crouched down again. Naturally, we skidaddled.

That was the last time I saw the monster myself, but the story does not end there. I met up with another friend whilst we were at a pub, and we got talking about weird shit we had seen. Bear in mind, I hadn't told him the tale of the monster yet, but he starts with his own story. He was playing football with his dad a few months ago, in a park about 2 miles or so away from the park near my house, and as it's getting pretty dark and cold, they decide to leave. Suddenly, he sees something tall and all dressed in white moving across the park in the distance. At first he thought it was pretty close, but then he realised how tall it was when it passed behind the goalposts at the other end of the pitch. Naturally, they skidaddled.

The story yet takes another twist. A few months after seeing the monster, another of my friends (someone who doesn't really know my other friends) makes a post on facebook about how him and some of his friends had been followed by something in a park. Now this park is a good 7/8 miles from my house, and is absolutely HUGE. I ask him about it. Him and some of his friends had driven there, and where just generally pissing around in the park, when they kept noticing something tall and white crouching down behind things in the distance, seeming to watch them, until they left the park.

Are the parks of Birmingham home to a mysterious monster or monsters? I don't want to jump to conclusions, but the answer is yes. Definitely.

So, have any of you got any stories that happened to you? Any recommendations of creepy ass songs? Post a comment! Get involved!

Happy Halloween folks!