No matter your beliefs, no matter your religion, upbringing, or superstitions, you simply cannot argue with what is right in front of you. I’ve never really been a skeptic; I’ve never doubted the existence of “something else” out there, living just on the edges of our reality, which is why bad ghost movies like White Noise piss me off to no end. This stuff is real, and it can be shown as such, but if it’s not done right, if it doesn’t resonate with me as something that could actually happen, it might as well be a child’s fairy tale.
On Saturday, October 29th, 2005, the proof of that other reality was put right in front of me, and even though it didn’t affect me as profoundly as some (after all I never really doubted its existence), it was one of the most amazing experiences of my life.
Lou Gentile’s been doing this sort of thing for years now and has been all over. At last year’s Rock & Shock he and Uncle Creepy, along with a few other people who more than likely wish to remain nameless, ventured into the Worcester Palladium after hours to see if they could pick up Electronic Voice Phenomenon (EVP) recordings. For those in attendance it was undisputed that contact was made, and shortly before my own journey began, Lou informed Uncle Creepy that it was because of that experience that he was able to realize his potential as a gatherer of EVP. Basically, if there’s something to be heard, Lou will hear it.
The first thing we did, and the main reason we had gathered, was to hear some recordings he and his crew had made on a recent outing to a location that I have to leave undisclosed for safety’s sake. Needless to say it’s a very, very haunted facility that Lou and his team investigate quite a bit, but what we heard that night was, quite simply, scary as hell. While the team was searching around, waiting to gather the usual info and see if any EVP could be picked up, they all very distinctly heard a bloodcurdling scream coming from, as they all described it, “everywhere yet nowhere”. The scream was very clear on the recording Lou played back for us, as was the second one that followed it, which sounded much closer. Then, immediately following the two screams was a very clear, very pained-sounding moan which everyone who was there (and three of them were with us that night) agreed was not heard until the audio was played back. It sounded like whatever had been doing the moaning was very close to the mic, which was enough to cause a rash of goosebumps to break out throughout the room.
Needless to say, it was pretty freaky. Compelling evidence no doubt but still just recordings that we had been assured weren’t tampered with in any way but, to be fully realistic, could’ve been for all we knew. At that point Lou was just a little better at this stuff than the charlatans you see on television, nothing more. Creepy knew otherwise, however, and kept encouraging Lou to take us out that very night to see if anything could be picked up in the Sheraton Meadowlands, a hotel which quite a few people have said is haunted.
We didn’t head out right away, however. Lou has a way about him, a style of communicating that makes you want to listen to him intently. He talks like a normal guy who’s seen and heard enough to be convinced that there is another side, and the residents there aren’t always going to be happy to communicate with the living. He very clearly told us before we headed out that night, and this is what freaked me out the most: “If you don’t believe in God, you’re going home with a ghost tonight”.
He then played some more recordings from the same location in which he tried to communicate with an entity to determine if it was human or demonic, and it was pretty clear it was the latter. Lou would ask it leading questions like “have you ever felt the sun on your face” or “did you know the touch of a woman once”, and judging by the reaction (which wasn’t pleasant) determined it was, in fact, not human. That’s the kind of thing I’ve never seen done on any manner of ghost hunting shows, but it makes so much sense when you think about it. It was further evidence that Lou really knew what the hell he was talking about.
Another freaky thing happened before we set out: As Lou was telling us about this location he’d been visiting for a while now, he mentioned the two urban explorers he hooked up with that were able to get him into the place. Literally right as he mentioned them, the two walked in the room as if on cue. Lou hadn’t communicated with them in any way, nor did he have a clear view of the hotel room’s door; it just so happened they showed up right when they were being discussed. Coincidence or yet another example of Lou’s talents? To be honest, I’m not sure, but it was damn cool.
After at least an hour, probably more, of listening to Lou discuss his experiences and some audio from those experiences, the time for us to try it was upon us. A group of about 10 of us including my wife, Creepy, his brother, Debi, a few others, and myself headed to the 8th floor to see if we could get any recordings. That was the floor most people reporting hearing things on, so it was a logical place to start. Unfortunately, it was a Saturday night at Chiller, and the hotel was filled to capacity, so we weren’t able to get more than a few moments of silence in which to try and hear something before some interruption or another would intrude. We decided to try and hit the exercise/pool area on the third floor as it would be the quietest and we’d have the least likely chance of being interrupted.
We found a quiet spot in a hallway and all sat down. Lou explained how it would work; he had a voice-activated recorder that would only record when there was sound. He would ask a question, allow some time for answering, then play it back. One of his team was along with us and told me, flat out, that no one gets EVP like Lou does, as I was soon to see. At first there was nothing during playback, just Lou’s voice asking the questions without a pause in between. No other noises, and we were all dead silent. No pun intended.
As we went on though, something was there, in-between the questions. It sounded like someone from very, very far away trying to say something while out of breath, and at first it only sounded like guttural moans and sighs. Lou would ask seemingly random “yes” or “no” questions, and the responses back became clearer and clearer each time.
Finally we decided to try and find out its identity. Going counter-clockwise from Lou, we would each ask, “What is your name?” with a 15-second interval between us. The logic behind this is that each one of us has our own energy, and the entity could use that energy to make its voice heard. We each asked. Between the questions, it was completely silent. When we were all done, Lou played back the recording. Each time the question was asked, there was an answer although we weren’t sure what was being said at first. Lou knew. He had the recorder closest to him during playback (it was out of his hands and on the floor, in plain sight, during the questions) but wanted to make sure we all heard it on our own. He played it back again. On the fifth person it was clearest: “Matthew”. We all heard it. We all gasped at the same time. If there were still any skeptics among us, they were gone as of that moment. It was undeniable. You cannot refute what is right in front of you, and there was no way it was a voice-throwing trick or something someone else may have said while we waited between questions. Indeed, a few times the answer was far louder than the question. It was, frankly, amazing.
We went on, continuing to ask it question upon question, trying to determine why it (he?) was there in the first place. Though the answers were never 100% clear, the point was there were answers. None of them seemed threatening, but a few did have a tinge of anger to them like when Lou asked if a child was present. The answer, we believe, was “no”, but I can’t really say for 100% sure.
Finally, Lou asked if the spirit was angry and if it wanted us to leave. When Lou played the recording back, before giving any of us a chance to listen to it more clearly, he immediately suggested we head back to Creepy’s room to listen. Unfortunately, by this time my wife and I were too tired to go; we had both dozed briefly during the period we were waiting for answers, so we retired, hoping to hear the rest the next day.
As it turned out, it was not to be, as Lou and his crew were supposedly leaving early on Sunday (though we ran into them around 5:00 pm; apparently they had been unable to get away for various reasons), but the rest of the crew said that the name we actually heard was possibly “Jennifer Matthews”.
All in all, it was an amazing experience, more than I could’ve hoped for in terms of validating the existence of the “other side”, as it were, and a wicked way to spend Halloween, even if it was a few days early. Although reading this experience is about 180 degrees away from actually being there for it, I hope what I’ve put down is enough to convince you, if nothing else, to listen for the name Lou Gentile and know that if there is any justice in this universe, the man will be as popular, if not more so, than all the bullshit artists out there now.
– Johnny Butane
Forget what you’ve seen regarding the paranormal. Forget what you think you know. None of it measures up to reality. We’ve all seen psychics and ghost hunters on television. There always seem to be some theatrics to what they do. When you have a chance to sit down and experience something with someone who is the real deal, all of your perceptions change. Lou Gentile is that someone.
Last weekend at the Chiller Theatre convention, Lou took us on an impromptu ghost hunt. Please note: This was completely unplanned. Lou has a talent. He can pick up EVP’s (Electronic Voice Phenomenon) just about wherever he goes. It was around 2:00 am. The question was posed whether or not we could do it there. Surely a convention is not the ideal spot. We had to search for a place quiet enough to try this. As always, Lou was up for the challenge. We settled in right by the pool area on the third floor of the hotel. We were a group of ten. We all sat on the floor, and Lou placed his recorder on the floor in-between all of us. No one was near it. No hands were on it. The recorder he uses is sound activated, meaning it will only record sound if it is present. He also informed us that SONY has an entire warehouse filled with these things because the people that used them returned them after hearing things other than their own voices upon playback of their recordings. That night all we heard while sitting there was the sound of each other’s voices as we asked questions to thin air. What we heard on the recorder upon playback thrilled and chilled us all.
Be warned. The sounds you are going to hear are very real, and you may find what you hear to be disturbing. The recordings have not been altered in any way aside from volume and speed adjustment. The original recordings are still on Lou’s recorder.
Below you will find the EVP’s made that night along with a brief description and transcription of the occurrence. Please note that these EVP’s are the property of Lou Gentile. They may not be used or rebroadcast in whole or in part without his expressed written consent.
The first two times we tried to get an EVP, we didn’t get anything at all. We tried again, and some chattering started.
Our next point of contact seemed a bit unclear. Something was there, but it was hard to make it out.
At this time Lou asked us all to ask the same question, which was “What is your name?”. We started getting something, but it was still unclear.
Here’s where things started getting really surreal. It’s one thing to ask a question and hear a noise. Hearing a full-blown answer to your question is a completely different story. Lou had us all ask them same question of “What is your name?” once again. After the second time the question is asked you can hear a voice say “Jennifer Matthew”. Or maybe it was two different voices. After the fifth person asks the question, you can again hear the name “Matthew” quite clearly. These recordings are presented below in both normal speed and slowed speed.
Once we were all positive we heard the name Matthew (we didn’t hear Jennifer until later playback), we all asked the same question again — “Is Matthew your name?” — We got back several responses of “Yes”.
Lou then asked, “How many spirits are around us right now, at this particular time, in this location, within a 100-foot range, if you can even range it at 100 feet?” to which an audible response of “Don’t know” came. He asked the same question again and was met with some other chatter along with the words “Help me”. Lou then asked, “Are there any spirits that are around us right now who died inside of this hotel?” The response came as what could only be described as a laugh. Lou went on, “Are there men around us now?” “Are their women around us now?” “Are there children around us now?” Each time there was a response of sorts. When asked about children, the response seemed loud and violent. The realization set in that we were by a pool. What is the worst thing that could happen by a pool? Someone drowning. Maybe even a child drowning. Hence, the reaction to the word.
We made it to the end of our night. Below is the final EVP of the evening. We again were met with some indistinct chatter, but most chilling Lou asked the question “Do you want us to communicate with you?”, which was then met by the response of “Please don’t harm me”. Whatever was there was confused. Maybe even scared. It was time for us all to leave.
What we experienced that night was unexplainable. Even the most jaded of the ten people in our group left with a new-found belief. Death is not the end. The air around us is filled with phantoms. Waiting to speak to us. Waiting to be acknowledged. Waiting for us to take the time to listen. Waiting.