Insomniac Radio King Art Bell Reclaims His Crown

The curious voice of late-night America returns to the airwaves

Ian Allen for TIME

Art Bell photographed preparing for his comeback at his home studio on Sept. 1, 2013 in Pahrump, Nev.

Since July, two events have shaken the typically sleepy patch of the Mojave Desert an hour west of Las Vegas. After decades of obfuscation, the CIA acknowledged the existence and location of Area 51, a base for testing secret military aircraft that has long been central to UFO lore. And Art Bell, whose late-night radio show once attracted an audience of millions of loyal insomniacs, announced he was returning to the airwaves full time after more than 10 years away.

For Bell fans, the timing wasn't a coincidence. They are the sort of people inclined to believe the government knows more about mysterious shapes in the sky than it lets on. And starting Sept. 16, on Sirius XM satellite radio, with Art Bell's Dark Matter, they will eagerly welcome back his unique blend of science, science fiction and science-maybe-fiction while the rest of the country sleeps.

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