Video Séance

Last night, when we had just got back from the carny with the skull-headed children and the singing rodeo clown. All full of bile and ire, just wanting the day to end. We played the message tape, from John Cussans, through ‘the set-up’.


The tape, which was found in the trees in the Weoley Castle circle-square and harvested during the looping hour between one and two, had been re-spooled earlier in the day. We chose to capture the message on the tape at the same hour exactly a week later.



We laid a red string and Tea Lights on the floor in the shape of the route we had taken on the vision quest (see images). The tape was played on a VCR, through a DV bridge, into a laptop, and recorded using Quicktime. Every time the tape glitched Quicktime stopped recording. The 25 minute videotape yielded 56 separate files, some of which were only one or two frames long. These 56 files were scrutinised for messages, revealing 17 movies containing words or phrases, which, when looped and combined, contained the following message (words or phrases link to looping videos – mouse over text below to show links):

– –
give me the pound, Ewitches,
and if we don’t eat a few minutes, you can call a tour rip.
You might be pookah via look train dreams.
If it can catch me a mix and come back here,
all the slave world workers carry me into this tenth fire burn.
It’s got to be working, gang.
Baby found you.
– –
We are uncertain about the usage of ‘pound’ here. It may be that we are being asked for money, but it is equally likely that it was an instruction to pound the streets, walking.
the phrase E-witches obviously refers to the seance process we were carrying out.
The second line is a reference to the rupture in the walk caused by the clocks turning back to GMT at 2am.
There is a suggestion in line three that by carrying out the “look train” (Vision quest), we would have dreams or visions.
The use of the word ‘mix’ is a clear reference to The Bughouse, but we are unclear about the meaning of “this tenth fire burn”. It may simply be that October is the tenth month, which relates to the moon, and not the sun, so is muddled. We are unsure about what the ‘slave world workers’ are, possibly a message to not return to the same location, because it may cause the ‘slave world workers’ harm us with fire (possibly firearms)
The penultimate sentence can be read as a clear signal from Cussans (or the pookahs) that the seance process is working.
We believe that the last sentence means that the black and white cat we encountered at various points during the day is called Baby.

NOTE: Some of these videos are clearer if downloaded and played at half speed