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Scary silent movies with live Memphis music coming to Crosstown


Memphis musicians will provide live accompaniment to scary silent movies as the Crosstown Theater this week launches its most ambitious film program to date — a countdown-to-Halloween series of cinema classics that will match visions of ghosts, witches and Lon Chaney in a dress with electric guitar, classical piano and rattling percussion.

According to organizers and participants, the intention is to evoke the days of silent cinema — when musicians routinely played in movie theaters — but with a Memphis vibe. Expect to hear the genre-defying experimentation and improvisation that characterizes Memphis musicians, whether they’re interpreting the blues, the Beatles or — in the case of “The Unholy Three,” which screens Thursday at Crosstown — a movie sequence in which an escaped ape attacks a jewel thief.

The musicians recruited for the series sound inspired.

“One of the best movie-going experiences I ever had in my life was the Alloy Orchestra  doing ‘Metropolis’ — incredible,” said Chris McCoy, whose punk-goth band 1000 Lights will perform Oct. 24 alongside the 1922 masterpiece “Häxan,” once notorious

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