Alibi V.16 No.35 • Aug 30-Sept 5, 2007 ››
A Compendium of Crawling Cryptids
Species: Hard rock, metal
In the Orient, Anesthesia is a giant slug that secretes dark purple, almond-scented goo. The creature is so named because its ooze is said to have anesthetic properties when huffed from a paper sack. (Our exhaustive research confirms this.) You’ll find these sticky cryptids on the undersides of heavy rocks, barstools and other unsavory items. Watch your step.
Species: Indie-stoner rock
The Bellmont is an ancient and rarely seen creature. If Lady Luck be on your side and you chance upon one, note its large and splendorous fur coat--a paisley chromatic scheme of pulsating, psychedelic colors! (Take care to guard against seizure.) Your nostrils will no doubt sense a heady aroma of mothballs and child's candy.
Proceed with extreme caution! Botnix is an insidious parasite that enters through the ear canal. Once inside it infects the host brain with delusions of grandeur, massive disorientation and an unquenchable thirst for malted wine. Some form of ear protection is recommended.
Species: Progressive rock, metal
A curious lot! What was long believed to be a giant sea snake, Caustic Lye (Suborder Drunkasspirahts) actually appears to be descended from the great Plesiosaurs of the Mesozoic. These aquatic scamps use loud barking sounds in quick succession to attract Harpies and other nighttime creatures back to their basement apartments. I hear they have "swinging" parties there, to which I, Archibald Bottomsworth, have never been invited. Their loss, really.
Devil Riding Shotgun
This large, hirsute Neanderthaloid was last spotted in the Shishi-kuh valley of Pakistan, traveling in packs of three. If approached by Devil Riding Shotgun, shake your head vigorously in time with the noise it emits--or risk being eaten.
Species: Underground hip-hop
Habitat: Dark alleys everywhere
DurtYSol is a dog-like beast that roams urban areas of Central and Northern America. Aggressive yet playful, DurtYSol is a powerful creature with a vicious, hypnotic bark and shadowy, gliding movements.
My brother recoils in shame when I tell this story, but here it is nonetheless: Once, when we were but lads in kneepants, Reginald had his face melted off by the Fivehundred clan. Being a gullible boy, I convinced little Reggie that a great treasure was buried in Fivehundred's Cave of Eternal Hot Lixx. Of course, all that awaited him was Fivehundred's skull-crushing rock. I had quite a laugh, but, oh!, little Reginald was sore about it for years. Silly pudding-faced brother!
Five Minute Sin
Species: Hard rock
Renowned for its ability to change shape, Five Minute Sin has never appeared in the same form twice. The last sighting of this creature reported 14 arms, 18 eyes and seven sets of genitals.
It's difficult to imagine a world without Frostbite, but imagine we must: Rising global temperatures are threatening to wipe it clean off the the planet. It will be a sad day, indeed, when this two-ton horned sloth goes the way of the unicorn.
Species: Progressive funk-rock
A cross between a jellyfish and a condiment dispenser, Funk Shui is truly one of the most puzzling creatures ever to set suction cups on dry land.
Species: Punk rock and roll
A type of Minotaur from pre-Roman times, The Gracchi haunt an unnamed island off the coast if Italy. Sailors and unwed mothers carry amulets shaped like The Gracchi to stave of additional misfortunes.
The Ground Beneath
These 15-foot-long giant lizards are reported in mine shafts and other subterranean enclaves. While its blue-black scales are frightening, you have nothing to fear if the creature is found in high spirits, and it often is.
Species: Reggae, hip-hop
Habitat: The tops of palm trees
A flying, tropical snake that many island dwellers consider good luck. Sightings of Kev Lee have diminished significantly in recent years. You will be in good company if you happen upon one.
Species: Latin hip-hop rock
Although nobody has ever seen one, La Junta is believed to dwell hundreds of meters beneath the Earth's surface. There they gestate in crystalline cocoons, waiting to rise up and overthrow Mankind with telepathic mind control.
Species: Crunk-metal dork-prog
Left Brain is in heretofore uncharted zoological territory, existing somewhere between a virus, a crustacean and a barnacle. This aquatic organism is, in reality, a geometric colony of billions of tiny shelled creatures that think and move as one collective unit. Once attached to a host, it is only a matter of time before Left Brain absorbs the poor creature’s cells into its own.
The Mantis Fist
The Mantis Fist is found in the Orient, where it is often compared to China’s Shaolin monks--a giant arthropod capable of praying and fighting simultaneously. The beast is said to announce its presence with a scratching sound. If heard, take shelter immediately.
Species: Reggae, hip-hop, R&B
Sailor lore speaks of this majestic lion-headed fish (or Mer-Lion, if you will) often at play in Caribbean waters. A crowd favorite!
of god and science
Species: Ambient indie-pop rock
Found on all seven continents, of god and science can best be described as a kind of fungus. It may be up to several kilometers long and, according to folklore, is telepathic and at least 325 years old. It may be listening to us at this very moment.
The Oktober People
Species: Space rock
The Oktober People have most likely come to our planet in peace. These gentle giants traveled hundreds of kilometers from their home on the moon when their spacecraft, a marvel of mechanical know-how called "The Good Ship Silverchord," crashed near Portales, N.M. At night they are said to be haloed with many shimmering points of light—perhaps an army of fireflies, trained to do their bidding?
Old Man Shattered
Species: Alternative rock
Old Man Shattered is a cross between a mouse and a monkey—an impish chimp no larger than a paperweight. Though it is small in stature, this diminutive beast can produce a mighty noise for hours on end, making it an excellent source of amusement for parlor games and dinner parties.
Species: Pop punkyroll
Ah yes, the fair Panicus lipstickrockus, how long have we pursued you? We know you to stalk the streets of Downtown, your long, giraffe-like legs in perfect synchronization with rows of dainty moth wings and a sprawling, elephantine trunk-snout. Yet we have never realized a chance encounter. So in the event you're reading this, which term do you prefer: "Winged Elephaffe" or "Flying Giralephant"?
Species: Post new wave, lo-fi electro
And what, prey tell, is a Poloroid? Some newfangled whirlygig from York, we suspect? Whatever it may be, we disapprove of it heartily. The Poloroid Pornography creature hardly lives up to its pornographic reputation--despite repeated viewing attempts, neither I nor my brother, Archibald, have seen so much as an ankle from this half-Siren, half-pitbull cryptid. And what's worse, it won't return any of my phone calls. Perhaps it lost my number.
Poor Man's Ferrari
Species: Rock, blues, funk
An unknown species of giant bear, Poor Man's Ferrari can be found hibernating in belfries, barns and shallow wells throughout Eastern Europe. Its pelt is prized on the black market.
Species: Blues, classic rock
By all accounts, Ryan McGarvey is a new kind of mountain-dwelling mammal that may be related to the common cougar. It is exceedingly agile and, despite its young age, has thick, well-honed chops—proceed with caution!
Saint Sinner Suns
Species: Underground hip-hop
Sightings of Saint Sinner Suns have been reported all over New Mexico, especially in Albuquerque, Santa Fe, Gallup and Shiprock. The diminutive dragon-like creatures travel in groups, concealing their small size with large numbers. By all accounts, it is an amazing sight to behold.
Species: Garage Americana
Like a giant, beautiful bat, Sin Serenade can be heard soaring through the air at dusk throughout the American Southwest. Although it has large eyes, this gorgeous creature is nearly blind. Sin Serenade uses echolocation to hunt its prey and can reach decibels undetectable to the human ear.
Species: Rock, blues, funk
Natives of the Smoky Mountain region also know Tennessee Skinny as the "Skunk Ape," due to its strong odor and biped stance.
Under The Blood
Species: Melodic hardcore
Bedouins of the Arabian Peninsula speak of the “flying dune spider,” a winged, eight-legged monster that brings criminals to justice. It is entirely unconfirmed, but we have reason to believe Under The Blood and the flying dune spider are one in the same. Should you get caught in its path, blowing smoke on its multiple rows of eyes is said to have a calming effect on the creature.
Unit 7 Drain
Species: Death wave
Said to be a cherished pet of Chairman Mao, Unit 7 Drain is a crossbreed of a panda bear and a three-toed skink, developed in the first stages of China’s Cultural Revolution. Licking the soft, white underbelly of this cryptid is rumored to produce hallucinations on par with a near-death experience. (Our exhaustive research confirms this.)
Vigil Brothers and NTox
Species: Underground hip-hop
A two-headed beast with the body of a samurai. "Joey" and "DJ N-Tox," as the two heads are known, are said to have emerged from the belly of a volcano. Though they consume great quantities of rare vinyl discs, they appear to be peaceful—just don't challenge them to a "scratching" dual, as my nincompoop brother Reginald did once. That's how he lost his nose, the poor bastard.
Species: Garage pop rock
Also known as the “Mongolian death worm,” Volume Volume was once thought to be an annelid from the middle Cretaceous. This theory was disproved, however, when Volume Volume got up, approached researchers and demanded a cigarette during a routine field test. Now the prevailing argument is that it’s an offshoot of Yeti.
Ya Ya Boom Project!
Species: Orchestral pop rocks
A government science experiment gone awry, the Ya Ya Boom Project was bred to end terrorism, turn straw into gold and freshen the air. Instead, it wanders aimlessly through the forest, pausing only to throw handfuls of confetti and shout “Ka-boom!” when it detects a nearby camper.
This is the only cryptid known to exist in captivity. However, going to see The Zoo is not advised, as it usually reaches through the bars of its cage and strangles tourists with one of its many tentacles.