Creeper's debut album turns four years old today, and what a journey it has been on. From the build-up to the aftermath, the band have kept an air of mystery around the album's story. So to celebrate here is a bitesize look into all the different twists and turns of the album's era.
AUGUST 27TH 2016
After appearing at Leeds Festival over the weekend, static images started to appear on Creeper’s Twitter. The band said that it wasn’t them.
Then all of a sudden every single one of the social accounts disappeared, personal as well. Every trace of the band was gone.
AUGUST 28TH 2016
The band’s Facebook page reappears. Missing posters stating that the band was last seen boarding a vehicle bound for Southampton popped up. If anybody had any information they were asked to call 023 8000 0376.
A missing poster also appeared for a man called James Scythe.
The number on the posters had previously appeared on a small run of tees for South Coast Coroners that came with pre-orders of ‘The Stranger’ EP. If you rang it before this date you would hear a lullaby and receive a text saying ‘Where Is James Scythe?’ Ringing it now played the same lullaby but sent a text linking to a website.
That website was whereisjamesscythe.co.uk.
The site contained loads of information about James, his work, the night that his wife died in a car crash and LOADS more. It also featured this incredibly creepy video, seemingly taken the night that James disappeared from Room 309 of the Dolphin Hotel in Southampton. The site also featured a link to another site called Strange Southampton. This site detailed more about the history of paranormal activity in Southampton. A link to James Scythe’s podcast The Spectral Sceptic appeared too with a 23 minute podcast detailing the history of The Callous Heart and The Stranger.
SEPTEMBER 5th 2016
After several days of teasing on their now active Twitter, the band post a picture of a game of hangman with the slogan “Soon the search begins”.
Soon, the search begins. pic.twitter.com/SUpve5rz57— C R E E P E R (@creepercultuk) September 5, 2016
SEPTEMBER 6TH 2016
The band post a picture of a payphone with the message "If you're ready, it's time to begin. 107 High Street, Shirley, SO16 4EY There is a phone call for you".
If you were to go to this phone you would see stickers on it advertising a psychic called Madame Darling. Ringing the number would then send you on a hunt through Southampton looking for letters to fill in the hangman. If you were to take part in the hunt you would be able to spell out ‘Suzanne’.
Also, if you were to ring the South Coast Coroners number now you would be greeted with a voice saying ‘“on the second of October 2016, we’ll die holding hands” SEPTEMBER 10TH The band started posting pictures, often shrouded in mystery, counting down to October 2nd saying that will “die holding hands”.
Here are some examples:
22 days, 7 hours, 54 minutes, 55 seconds. We’ll die holding hands. pic.twitter.com/ElfBZehkPl— C R E E P E R (@creepercultuk) September 10, 2016
13 days, 20 hours, 20 minutes, 56 seconds. We'll die holding hands pic.twitter.com/CcqwaPdbqV— C R E E P E R (@creepercultuk) September 18, 2016
05 days, 02 hours, 19 minutes, 58 seconds. We’ll die holding hands. pic.twitter.com/Y5tM8vkCOA— C R E E P E R (@creepercultuk) September 27, 2016
02 days, 03 hours, 00 minutes, 32 seconds. We’ll die holding hands. pic.twitter.com/wi6AaDp2Kp— C R E E P E R (@creepercultuk) September 30, 2016
OCTOBER 02nd 2016
The band post one final picture bringing together all of the pieces from the last month with a hint that a new song would premiere on the Radio 1 Rock Show.
6 hours, 17 minutes, 20 seconds. We'll die holding hands. pic.twitter.com/v3B8kwdv6C— C R E E P E R (@creepercultuk) October 2, 2016
OCTOBER 03rd 2016
The video for Suzanne premieres. It depicts footage captured by James Scythe that was found in his room after his disappearance. The Stranger can be seen hiding in the shadows throughout. ‘Eternity, In Your Arms’ is also announced with a release date of March 24th.
DECEMBER 12TH 2016
The video for ‘Hiding With Boys’ premieres. It details the events of December 23rd 2015 as James Scythe is driving around Southampton conducting his investigation into the Callous Heart and The Stranger before returning to his room at the Dolphin hotel.
JANUARY 31st 2017
Anyone who pre-ordered ‘Eternity In Your Arms’ were automatically entered into a competition to win tickets to an event. Winners were notified and those who RSVP’d instructed where to be and what to wear.
The event turns out to be a "funeral" for 3 of Creeper’s songs, ‘Novena’, ‘Into The Black’ and ‘The Secret Society’. Attendees were also instructed after the first band of the night had played to approach a man in a suit, who had already greeted them at the door, and say “So young and so blessed”. Those who did this were handed envelopes that said “…a letter bomb with no address”. Inside was a card for Strange Southampton with a Facebook address and in the corner a date.
The band denied all knowledge of there being a man.
Didn’t see any man in a suit…. Was a great show though, thanks for coming!— C R E E P E R (@creepercultuk) 2 February 2017
FEBRUARY 2nd 2017
On the date that was written on the corner of the Strange Southampton card, a chat box appears on their Facebook page. It allowed users to talk about 3 different subjects: The Callous Heart, The Stranger and James Scythe. It then invited them to receive live updates of a ghost walk that the group was planning on going on in the near future.
FEBRUARY 10TH 2017
The Strange Southampton ghost walk takes place. After showing off a few of Southampton’s landmarks the group then detailed a game that can play which has the ability to take you to different worlds. Several videos were sent of the game taking place, each one glitchier than the last, before eventually the camera is dropped as the Stranger comes into view. A reversed clip of speech was then sent through the page’s chatbot. Reversing it back to its original form revealed the Stranger to be saying “On the day of my second track, the rain will turn from blue to black.” So the second track on ‘The Stranger’ EP is ‘Valentine’ and instead of blue rain, it is black rain. So what’s coming on Valentine’s Day?
FEBRUARY 14TH 2017
Well, would you look at that. A new song called ‘Black Rain’ premieres. The video shows the events of December 25th where James Scythe is seen following the members of the Callous Heart, in particular one girl, into a church. When he enters only her jacket remains. Where's she gone then?
MARCH 24TH 2017
‘Eternity, In Your Arms’ is released.
MARCH 29th 2017
The band put on an event called ‘Inside Room 309’. Alongside a Q&A and screening of the previous three videos, the event also featured the premiere of the final piece of the puzzle. The video for ‘Misery’. The video takes place on December 27th and attempts to round up everything that has already taken place as James Scythe comes face to face with The Stranger and his lost love. Though it doesn’t actually explain where he actually is now.
JUNE 8th 2017
The band post a photo of the site of the 1967 Southampton World’s Fair with a link to a new page on the Strange Southampton site.
The page detailed the “strange happenings” that took place back then and hinted at a 50th-anniversary celebration. This would later be revealed as the band’s Theatre Of Fear UK tour.
SEPTEMBER 25TH 2017
The band posted a picture that looked like a page ripped from James Scythe’s diary.
It read: “October 2014. The pages within consider a world in which I have found myself falling into, and need to document so the world knows. Though, if you’re reading this, God only knows what’s happened to me. If this is in your hands, do what you have to do to make everyone understand. I hope it never comes to that. J. Scythe.”
It would later be revealed that a book titled ‘The Last Days Of James Scythe’ was being released. It spoke in more detail about James Scythe’s disappearance and his research into the Stranger and The Callous Heart.
NOVEMBER 05 2017
Posters advertising the 50th anniversary of the Southampton World Fair started popping up around the city with a link to a website Southamptonworldfair.co.uk.
If you were to visit the website you would find a video presented by Ed Granters (Granters is an anagram of Stranger btw) detailing how the 50th anniversary will take place. The video often glitches and Ed's eyes change to the Strangers when he says a particular word such as "fear".
JULY 25TH 2018
The band tweet the words “6 remain”. A countdown on the band's website starts ticking with it hitting 0 in 90 days. It is accompanied by the J.M Barrie quote “to die would be an awfully big adventure”.
NOVEMBER 01ST 2018
90 days after the countdown started Creeper play a show at London’s Koko. When the show is over the six members take off their Callous Heart jackets and lay them to rest on the stage. Have the band broken up for good? Is this the Callous Heart being laid to rest?
The lengths that Creeper went to keep their fans on their toes and fuel the mystery of what actually happened to James Scythe during the 'Eternity, In Your Arms' cycle was nothing short of monumental and something that deserves to be celebrated forever and always.