Saturday, 25 February 2012

Black Library audio books know no subtlety.

I don't usually post non-terrain or non-modeling material on this blog, but I've just encountered possibly the most magnificently cheesy thing I have ever listened to in all my years of dedicated audio-book and radio drama fanaticism.
My brother and his wife gave me 'Garro: Oath of Moment' on CD for christmas. Since I have been working my way steadily through all twenty discs of Peter F. Hamilton's 'The Dreaming Void' ever since christmas, I've only just listened to it. It's read by the same man (Toby Langworth), and it's 70 minutes of enormous ham.
Mr. Langworth is an excellent narrator - The Dreaming Void has a cast of thousands, and he managed to give every one a different voice, while injecting just the right mood into his voice for the demands of the narrative. However, his acting notes for Garro seem to have read 'What Would Brian Blessed Do?'. The whole thing is read with a sort of magnificent hammy over-dramatic fervour which turns a story of mighty warriors doing great deeds into sheer hilarity.
Then there's BL's decision to add music and sound effects lifted from Dawn of War (including dying screams when marines are slain!) This just ups the ham factor until we reach Ham Factor Overload.

This is probably the most entertaining audio book I've listened to all year just out of the wonderfully ham-fisted so-bad-it's-good way it's read. I'm not sure that BL are in on the joke; but Toby Langworth obviously is - we're talking about a very experienced radio actor and audio book narrator here.
I award Garro: Oath of Moment 4 out of 5 legs of ham (because it starts to tone down later on!)

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