Klaxon – Si Spencer & Dix (Self Made Hero)
Books should stay with you long after you’ve finished reading them. They should haunt your dreams, fill your idle thoughts with endless potential, they should reshape reality and change your perception and ideas of what is and isn’t possible. All too often though, they don’t do what they’re supposed to or live up to expectation and are instantly forgettable, just another ripple in a raging ocean of disposable literature. So when a book that challenges its reader with its content and the stark, brutal way it portrays the world in which its story takes place, and in doing so does what every good book should do, I devour it with equal passion and fervour . Which is why, after emerging from an evening entwined in ‘Klaxon’’s embrace, I felt satiated and a little dizzy, as my imagination was buzzing with a hundred different questions posed by the imagery and text I’d just consumed.
It’s a tale of the bleak, cold “ordinariness” of everyday life and the people who live it, and how nothing in life and none of the people it holds in its thrall are truly ordinary. Everything and everyone is extraordinary in their own unique way, and with a little understanding and courage we can overcome anything and do something spectacular. On the surface it’s a story of new neighbours, or boy meets girl, of their families and the strange relationship they have with their landlord, of the humdrum and banal minutia of urban existence portrayed as concrete nightmare of endless repetition, pretence and boredom. But delve a little deeper, and a thousand sub-plots and takes begin to bubble to the surface, physically abusive relationships, the escape that all we all long for, the narcosis of society and expectation that we all long for and find ourselves drowning in, the notion of love and all that is has to offer, the ties that prevent us becoming who we think we should be, who we long to be and who we end up being and how we’re changed by, and how we change, our environments through our actions and inaction. And thanks to Si Spencer’s hypnotic story-telling and Dix’s haunting, slightly terrifying, oddly surreal and at times almost psychedelic artwork, ‘Klaxon’ unfurls its many tendrils in an almost hallucinogenic haze that convinces your subconscious that you must be under the influence of some illicit mind altering substance. Which in a sense you are, because that’s exactly what great works of fiction should do. They should strip away your inhibitions, transport your imagination to strange and fantastic new places and make you question everything you’ve just read. And that’s exactly what ‘Klaxon’ does… Tim Mass Movement