Queens Of Mystery (2019) s01e03 Episode Script

Death By Vinyl - First Chapter

1 Some prodigious children display a gift for music.
Others for chess or spelling.
Even at an early age, Matilda had a keenly developed interest in murder Not, it must be said, in the committing of them but in the solving.
With her mother missing and her paternity unknown, Matilda occasionally wondered what it would be like to have a father.
But despite her early aptitude for the art of detection, some small part of her knew that certain questions were better left unasked and unanswered.
Sir.
I have an important case for you, Stone.
Inspector Thorne believed that everything in life has to be earned.
Ringo the dachshund is missing.
But having solved a double murder so early in her career Not high-profile enough? Matilda now needed bringing down a peg or two.
A zero-tolerance policy, sir.
Very sound policing.
I'm all over it.
Right.
Precisely eight miles, four yards, and two inches away, in the private recording studio of rock legend Sir Ray Ives, drummer Viv Collins was surfacing from her all-too-familiar nightmare.
Kumquat.
And where more sensitive souls preferred silence in the wake of a raging hangover, Viv had always favored picking up her sticks.
Oh, God.
Meanwhile Meanwhile, across from the studio in the main house, one half of perhaps the most ill-matched couple in southern England was suddenly gripped by regret.
I Uh, yeah, it's a message for Steven.
We've arrived.
Everything's cool.
We're ready to get rocking in the studio, so to speak, so call me back.
It's Len.
Savage.
I should never have let you persuade me to come.
Really? You're doing this? We haven't put out an album for 10 years.
No one's interested in us, not anymore, and we're still called Volcanic Youth.
It's embarrassing.
You know, I worked my ass off to get this deal.
I thought you'd be over the moon like everyone else, but Anyway, it's too late to change your mind.
The deal's already been done.
And you'd hold me to that? Well, as your husband, maybe not.
But as your manager, yeah, I will.
And when did you last see Ringo? Well, he vanished this morning in the woods on the edge of town.
- It's true, then.
- What is? That Volcanic Youth are recording a reunion record up at Trent House.
Ringo loved their music.
Where most would hear only silence, Kurt Lee picked up on the slow drip of a bathroom tap a buzzing fly caught in a web and the low croak of a distant raven.
After 33 years of varying degrees of fame, Electra Bliss was still committed to making a grand entrance whenever humanly possible.
Well, hello, you lovely people.
To be clear, I did want to give you all a ride in the limo, but spoilsport Len wouldn't allow it.
Well, you lot are like the royal family.
I can't risk you all traveling together, can I? Hope you got my arrival, Jonas.
It was Jonas Wimmer's firm belief that despite the relative obscurity of the now mostly forgotten new-wave rock band Volcanic Youth, his film about them was destined to clean up at a future awards season.
And so he had dedicated himself to interviewing the remaining members of the band and their manager.
Um, could you take your glasses off? No.
Although his style was less fly-on-the-wall than fly-in-your-face.
Give it a rest, Jonas.
Oh.
I see you still got the jacket.
One previous owner Janis Joplin.
I got it when "Twenty Seven" reached number three in the charts.
Worn it for luck ever since.
I'm surprised it hasn't finally fallen apart by now.
I look after things that are important to me.
Unlike some people.
I will sing every sorrow under the sun Aunt Cat? I couldn't take all your worries Away from you, my love Cat? Even sometimes in the summer Oh, hello, kid.
Everything all right? I just heard Volcanic Youth are recording up at Sir Ray Ives' studio.
Matilda knew that despite some early promise, Cat's involvement with Volcanic Youth had ended for a number of reasons the most significant of which was her becoming pregnant after a misjudged drunken encounter with a doting fan.
This broke the heart of her first great love, caused irreparable rifts in the band, and would result, seven months, four days, and one hour later, in Cat being unable to commit to a make-or-break tour of the dive bars and beer halls of Western Europe.
I'm sorry, I can't.
Not like this.
She's right.
She looks like a whale.
Oh, who cares? Volcanic Youth stopped being relevant years ago.
Cuppa? Only later, when Matilda had gone, would Cat's bravado subside, and she'd once again entertain thoughts of what might have been, both musically and with the woman she had once envisaged spending her life with.
Ringo! Ringo, come on! Ringo! Are you sure you want to do this, Cat? I'll be fine.
Despite Cat's determination to rebuild bridges with her former bandmates, her sisters, Beth and Jane, saw only troubled waters ahead.
I'm not sure this is such a good idea.
- Because of Nikki? - Yeah.
So tell me about Nikki.
Well, Volcanic Youth was, um Well, it was Nikki's idea, you know? And we were young women, and it was a man's world, and we had so much that we wanted to say.
Yeah, well, you know, everything changed.
Cat left, and then Nikki Yeah.
Nikki drowned in your manager's swimming pool back in 1985.
Look, just because you die at 27, it doesn't automatically make you a genius.
I didn't believe it when they told me who was waiting at the gate.
Hey, Len.
How are you? Oh, you know, older, uglier, still not as rich as I'd like to be, but, hey, that's life.
Come.
Oh, the wheels of time Oh, it's like the studio time forgot.
Yeah, the label thought it would add authenticity to the album.
- Hey.
- Hi.
Cat, this is Kurt Lee.
- Hiya.
- Big fan, Miss Stone.
I loved the first two Volcanic Youth albums.
Your Sorry, your bass, so raw, so urgent.
How do you capture that kind of energy? Oh, no time, a bit of luck, and very limited musical ability.
Time's past, but now I'm home 'Cause, baby, there's no stopping me Now I'm back to where I'm known So let's dance, don't stop to sleep We're soaring high Hey, guys.
Might want to take a break.
We have a visitor.
Who's that? The Sound & the Fury.
Mr.
Cardosa, it's D.
S.
Stone.
I have some bad news.
I can't believe Cat Stone is actually hanging in the studio with us.
You still play much? No, not really.
Focused on my writing.
Oh, those graphic novels of yours.
I've read a few.
They're good.
So does that mean I'm still safe, you know, as the new bassist? - Yeah, you're safe.
- Good.
You know, I was trying to remember, Cat, when the last time was that I saw you, and then I realized that it was It was, um, when When Nikki was still the lead singer.
This regrettable reference to Nikki Holler would cast a long shadow over the reunion.
I need a fag.
Should we take a break? Part of our revival, apparently.
- The price of fame, I guess.
- Hmm.
So, what's your sprog doing now? Oh, you know, the usual.
You don't know, do you? Actually, it's really good 'cause it makes it so much easier for me to forgive you.
Forgive me? What the hell for? For bailing on us.
The tour.
Bailing? You couldn't wait to get me out the door.
And you couldn't wait to be a mother.
You even left Nikki in the dust.
You need to apologize.
Never apologize.
Never explain.
- You're a bloody cow! - Ow! - Uh-oh.
- Get off me, you crazy woman! You'll never bloody change! You won't never, ever, ever! - Girls, girls, girls! - Crazy woman! - Whoa, whoa! - She needs help.
Yeah.
Well, that went well, then.
As Volcanic Youth and their entourage waited to meet the legendary and somewhat reclusive owner of Trent House Studios, familiar tensions began to surface.
Uh, just water.
Thanks all the same.
I can smell booze on you.
Namaste.
I'm Sir Ray.
Welcome.
The outlook of rock god Sir Ray Ives had been completely altered during an extended stay at a Goan ashram during the mid-'70s.
The Scarlet King would never perform onstage again, instead retreating to the studio and the temptations of the double album.
I've never believed you have to suffer to write great songs, as long as the emotion is genuine.
Mm, and people can relate, right? Film's the same.
It's all emotion.
It's the same for me, Sir Ray.
Helps me to remember where I'm from.
I delve into that a lot.
Might need to delve a little deeper.
'Cause the last album was, you know, not up to much.
So why did you stop touring, Sir Ray? Yeah, don't you miss playing live? My songs are like children to me.
Nowadays I'd rather not expose them to the world like that.
I would have loved a few nippers myself.
Oh! What? Years and years of nappies and school plays and teenaged angst? Ha! Can't imagine anything worse.
Quelle surprise.
Motherhood would mean she'd have to think of someone other than herself for once.
Who wants another drink? Just ignore her, Sir Ray.
She's bitter.
And she's bankrupt poor Len over the IVF bill.
Shh.
Touchy subject? At least I'm not lying to myself that I'm still some kind of star.
Rather a fading a star than a housewife with nothing but regrets.
Maybe you should have married her.
You'd have made a lovely couple.
Oh! Come on.
Ringo.
Ringo.
Remember me 'Cause that's all you've got Yes.
I'm a road That don't go home Hmm.
Fading star? Hmm.
You've still got it, baby.
Oh, the reason For my floods of tears Is 'cause you say We're surely dying Remember me 'Cause that's all you've got 'Cause I'm a road That don't go home Kurt? Kurt, stop messing about.
Kurt, is that you? Kurt, this isn't funny.
Terry.
The scene is secure, and I've asked everyone who's still here to wait in the main house.
Everyone who's still here? One of the band left in the night.
Okay.
Despite the countless crime scenes that Matilda had created during her childhood, the real thing still played havoc with her equilibrium.
Hi.
- Daniel.
- Oh.
Sorry.
Sorry, I'm a quiet walker.
Should have knocked.
Oh, bloody hell.
Well, there goes my teenage years.
Had a huge crush on Electra Bliss.
She knew it was unreasonable, given the situation, but the idea of Dr.
Lynch having feelings for Electra Bliss, even way back, caused Matilda to think bad thoughts.
Excuse the outfit.
Came straight here.
So, what have we got? The deceased, Susan Foyle Aka Electra Bliss Was 50 or 55, depending on the source, and lead singer of Volcanic Youth.
They're a new-wave band from the '80s.
Their biggest hit was "Blue Girl," which was used in a jean commercial.
La, la, la There's a blue girl over here And she's giving me the fits I think I vaguely remember them.
Last seen alive? According to their manager, she retired alone to bed at midnight.
Any thought on time of death yet? Need longer to be accurate, but I'd estimate between 1:00 and 4:00 a.
m.
- Who are your lead suspects? - Everyone who we know was here.
Tallulah Savage-Hughes, keyboard player and wife of the manager, left in the night and remains unaccounted for.
Her phone's off, so we've been unable to track it, but there's an ANPR out on her car.
Very good.
You can put the missing-dog investigation on hold for now.
Dead dog, I'm afraid, sir.
Run over.
Oh.
Poor thing.
Well, we need to focus our resources, and I want zero interference from your aunts.
Do I make myself clear? As a tubular bell, sir.
What Inspector Thorne wanted to say next was Oh, world, no world but mass of public wrongs, confused and filled with murder and misdeeds.
But what he actually said was Better get to work, then, Stone.
Let's take a look at her room.
- I'll, uh, see you inside.
- Okay.
I'm a bit busy, Aunt Beth.
Can I call you back? - Are you at Trent House? - I might be.
The sister of the cleaner there just told me there's been a murder.
Of course she did.
Someone was in here with her.
And this has been wiped down in a hurry.
Drilled from this side recently.
She was being watched.
My horoscope said that this week would end on a bad note, but I thought it meant, like, you know, musically.
About time.
I'm Detective Sergeant Stone, and I'm in charge of the investigation.
Right, hi.
My name's Len Savage, manager of the band.
You should speak to me first before the media gets hold of this and arrives at the gate.
Can we stop word getting out? Well, it would help if none of you posted anything on social media.
Whoa, whoa, hang on.
Susan's fans have the right to know what's happened.
Her fans?! What about my right to some privacy in my own home?! You can't suppress the truth, old man! Truth?! Yeah, right.
Okay, let's all try to keep calm.
We'll need a copy of any footage you've shot since arriving here.
Ommmm.
Uh, I wasn't allowed to shoot last night, so I doubt it's much use to you.
I'll be the judge of that.
Ommmm.
Have you heard from your wife since she left? Ommmm.
Did anything take place between her and the deceased last night? Tallulah had a barney with Electra and then went storming off.
Well, you were right, Mr.
Savage.
We should talk to you first.
Ommmm.
Now I feel really bad about what happened yesterday.
You weren't to know, Cat.
She wasn't always such a cow.
When I first met Susie, she was great fun.
The five of us had such a mad time starting that band together.
Keep things a mystery You know they have history And, no, it never ends well It's called death by vinyl I remember you two laughing a lot.
How was she killed? Strangled with a microphone cord.
You know Volcanic Youth had a song called "Strangled"? - Have you got it? - No.
I made a point of not buying the albums after I quit the band.
I think we should take a listen.
What time did your wife leave? Well, I carried on drinking till about 2:00.
Then I went back up to the room and we argued some more, and then she drove off about 20 past.
Any idea of her destination? Were you and Electra Bliss having an affair? You're joking, aren't you? It's bad enough being married to oneof them.
No.
Purely professional between us.
Hey, Pat.
You got a copy of "Twenty Seven"? Course I have, Cat.
- There you go.
- Cheers.
Scream and shout my angry words A song you just can't handle Before I clench my steel guitar This voice cannot be strangled Any issues going on with the band? There's always issues with the band.
Care to elaborate? Well Electra demanded that I get in a session drummer to replace Viv.
She wanted her out.
You hear that? Don't remember that on the radio.
- What was it? - Backmasking.
It's a technique where you record lyrics backwards onto a track that's going to be played forwards, so the only way you can hear the words is to spin the record in reverse.
Carry your sin Through the moonlit wood Okay, so that's not weird at all.
- This was mixed by Kurt Lee.
- Yeah.
He's the sound engineer I met up at Trent Farm.
Let's start with the accident.
Accident? What? What do you mean? Am I under arrest? If I-If I Well, then, I need Len.
Or I need a solicitor.
Did you run over this dog on your way to the studio yesterday? I don't know what you're on about.
I-I thought we were here about Susan.
I mean, I can't believe she's dead, do you know, and murdered to boot.
She's been my friend for 40-odd years.
Did you know she wanted you replaced by a session drummer? No.
No.
I didn't.
No one else arrived or left until the cleaner turned up at 8:00 a.
m.
And your aunts are here.
Please don't tell anyone.
No.
No, no, no, no, no.
If Inspector Thorne finds out you're here You need to leave.
Mattie, we might have something on the case.
You can't be involved Especially as you knew her and apparently had a fight with her only yesterday.
Look, kid.
Susie was strangled, correct? Well, guess what the last song on their breakup album was called.
I'm gonna go for "Strangled.
" No such thing as a bad coincidence.
And it was mixed by Kurt Lee.
Tell her about the backmasking.
We listened to "Strangled" on vinyl.
The band recorded a secret message at the end of the song backwards.
"Carry your sin through a moonlit wood.
" And? It's rather sinister, don't you think? A strange lyric at the end of a 30-year-old song? It's hardly a motive for murder.
No, now, come on! You need to leave.
Go on.
Although she had dismissed it, this was exactly the sort of obscure potential clue that would churn endlessly around in Matilda's brain like the worst kind of earworm.
I owe it to Susie to look into this.
Don't stop, or Mattie might see me.
Cat's eventful year as a Hollywood stuntwoman had stayed with her.
Known amongst that close-knit community of thrill seekers as "Nine Lives," had it not been for an aversion to health-food fads and a yearning for actual seasons, she may well have settled permanently in the City of Angels.
I understand you gave Susan the studio keys.
Yeah, she knocked on my door about 2:00 asking for them.
Said the muse was in her and she wanted to record alone.
So you were the last person to see her alive.
Well, I guess.
Except for the murderer.
- Hmm.
- What do you see? Well, Susan set it up for vocals.
Was anything recorded? Um, I don't know.
But the tape's been taken.
There was a reel on there yesterday.
You've reached the office of Steven W.
Tyne at Retrodisc Records, Please leave a message.
Uh, Steven, hi.
It's Len Savage again.
Um, obviously, under the circumstances, it's, uh, it's it's really urgent that we speak, so call me back.
Okay.
Um Bye-bye.
You were the engineer on "Twenty Seven.
" At the end of "Strangled," there's a backmasked lyric "Carry your sin through a moonlit wood.
" What was that about? Sorry, it's a long time ago now.
I really don't remember.
Are there hidden messages on other albums? I didn't kill her.
Susan was spectacular to listen to.
You know, not just singing, but talking.
Even breathing.
She'd whisper a lyric or shout it or make a sound that just, you know, connected right here, like she'd reached in and and grabbed your heart.
You know, it's what great singers can do.
Can make you feel something.
You know, I would never rob the world of that.
Isn't that their missing keyboardist? Park up over there, Beth.
- Mr.
Ives.
- Ah.
It's going to take a lot of komiyam to balance out the negative energy that the murder would have produced.
Komiyam? Cow urine.
To rebless the property.
Uh, I need to ask you some questions.
Did you know Electra Bliss prior to Volcanic Youth coming to record here? - Only by reputation.
- And how was she at the dinner? Exactly as you'd imagine.
A complete diva with highly narcissistic tendencies.
Didn't warm to her, then, Mr.
Ives? You don't warm to rock stars.
They expect everyone to be in their orbit.
And it's Sir Ray, by the way.
Sorry, Sir Ray.
Of course it is.
Truth is Volcanic Youth weren't much of a band after they lost their original singer, Nikki Holler.
For my money, she was the talented one.
Oi, Len.
No way are you getting out of this.
It's not my responsibility.
These people do not mess about, okay? We need to pay them what she owed.
That's your problem, Gina.
It's not mine.
One call, it's gonna be your problem too.
I take it you had keys to the studio and Electra Bliss' room? You keen on DIYs, Sir Ray? I try to do as much of the maintenance here as I can.
I like my privacy.
Why do you ask? Need a hand putting up a shelf? No.
I think someone was keeping a rather close eye on the deceased.
- Look.
- Oh, not another one? We mustn't let Mattie see them.
Oh.
Where is she off to now? Shh.
She'll hear us.
Well, why has she stopped? Did Len send you? No, we're Cat Stone's sisters.
- People are looking for you.
- Tough.
They'll have to record the album without me.
Album? Electra Bliss is dead.
She was murdered last night in the studio.
Go on.
Tallulah Savage-Hughes, you're under arrest.
- Citizen's.
- What? You're supposed to say, "I am making a citizen's arrest.
" - I'm making a - Yes.
What's the point of that? You're coming with us.
Give it a rest, Jonas.
See you've still got the jacket.
One previous owner Janis Joplin.
I got it when "Twenty Seven" reached number three in the charts.
So where's the jacket now? Perhaps the killer took it.
D.
S.
Matilda Stone.
Mattie, I know we're not meant to get involved, but we found Tallulah in town.
And we're bringing her in.
I'll meet you outside.
Tell me that wasn't one of your aunts.
That wasn't one of my aunts.
Technically, Matilda wasn't lying.
I spoke to the travel agency.
They said you bought a ticket to Brazil.
- I'm leaving my husband.
- Seems like a long way to go.
The further, the better.
You had an argument with the deceased a few hours before her murder.
Being in a band together for over 30 years means we're a highly dysfunctional family.
At the start, we were equal.
We'd flog the merch, drive the van.
We all chipped in.
Well, that changed.
For years now, Susan has had the rest of us over a barrel.
I just wanted out.
Okay.
So who else might have a motive to kill her? I don't know about a motive, but you should be talking to Viv.
As I was driving off last night, I saw her going into the studio.
I need to speak to the drummer.
Set up a room.
I just want to check something out first.
Okay.
Babe.
Babe, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa.
- Where have you been? - None of your business.
It's over, Len.
All of it.
You don't get to control me anymore.
Oh! Aunt Cat, what are you doing in here? Same as you.
Trying to solve this.
But the door was How did you get in here? What are you looking for? Ugh, Janis Joplin's jacket.
Right.
Okay.
So now that Susan's murder is trending on Twitter, we've got to get you lot into the studio to record some music to go with the lyrics she laid down last night.
You're out of luck, Len.
Tape's missing.
No, no, it isn't.
I-I-I slipped it out first thing this morning before they sealed the studio.
But isn't that, like, evidence or something? I mean, shouldn't you hand it over to the police? Oh, guys! Come on! It's just lyrics! We owe it to the memory of Susan to record this.
Ha! Now, where have I heard that before? Something I want to show you.
"I know you're drinking again.
I won't let your inability to deal with the past ruin our future.
" Viv lied to me.
She did know Electra Bliss wanted her out.
You've reached the office of Steven W.
Tyne at Retrodisc Records.
Please leave a message.
Steven, uh Oh, it's like a bad joke.
Um, how can you claim to run a record company if you don't answer your damn phone, huh? It's Len.
Savage.
The method by which Len Savage had been dispatched was not without wit, for Volcanic Youth's manager had always been a rather enthusiastic backstabber.
Keep things a mystery You know they have history And, no, it never ends well It's called death by vinyl