Archive for Goth

music to die for: the story of Goth in 33 songs

Posted in Music, Popular Culture with tags , , , , on October 29, 2017 by phanteana

music lists compiled as a “history of [insert genre here]” are always interesting to read. some songs fit perfectly, while others appear to be a square peg in a round hole. the story of Goth has long been up for debate: who really started it, where did it begin, etc. these theories can go on for days in online discussion forums and on social media, and sometimes a resolution is nowhere in sight.

to join in the ongoing debate, Pitchfork put together “The Story Of Goth In 33 Songs” in an attempt to shed some light on the dark side of modern music. in addition, they conducted a phone interview with Peter Murphy, who is often viewed as one of Godfathers of Goth despite never fully aligning himself with the title. Murphy’s solo albums are less brooding than his work with Bauhaus and his two greatest influences were David Bowie and Iggy Pop (who were credited with inventing Glam Rock and Punk, respectively), but he never lost his eerie creative flair (thank goodness).

while i can’t say i’m familiar with the latter entries on the list (other than Fever Ray’s “If I Had A Heart“), the classics i know and love certainly reflect the story of Goth well. my only issue with this list is the lack of inclusion of “Paint In Black“, which is probably one of the best representations of Goth in its infancy (and paved the way for numerous covers by both Goth and non-Goth artists)…a job well done, Mick.

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days of black

Posted in Music with tags , on October 20, 2017 by phanteana

i live in a major US city that hosts a lot of popular musical acts on their tours. however, some of the artists i enjoy are European, and rarely cross shores whether it be for travel issues, financial matters, or simply just less of a fan base to perform to. while there are some folks who have the means to travel around the world to see their favorite musicians, others do not and unfortunately miss out on the experience. but again, it costs money to have fun these days.

one group that i’ve been a long-time admirer of is Amsterdam’s Clan Of Xymox. for over 30 years, they’ve cast a spell on listeners with dark & dance-able tunes. they’ve headlined some of the biggest festivals in Europe and South America, but finding a home with US audiences hasn’t been so easy; while the West Coast and the Southeast have welcomed the band with open arms (despite their lack of US appearances, they have played multiple one-off shows in Florida, Texas, and California), parts of the Northeast only contain smatterings of fans and obviously concerns of whether or not audiences will turn up certainly have held CoX back from playing places like New York & Boston (despite both being large cities with rich culture). but both these cities will finally have an opportunity once again to see Clan of Xymox next spring, as they tour the US for the first time in almost 20 years…happy days of black are here again.

unread, unread, unread

Posted in Art & Photography, Music with tags , , , , , , on October 13, 2017 by phanteana

since it’s Friday the 13th and all, it only makes sense to post something Halloween-related….but instead of bombarding y’all with Jason Voorhees memes, let’s talk about this monster of all coffee table books being (appropriately) released for pre-order on Halloween.

Bauhaus (specifically Peter Murphy) have been in my collection and my heart for decades. they are the band that started it all. without them, none of the artists they influenced would exist. i have seen Bauhaus as a collective twice during their resurrection, and separately (again, specifically Peter Murphy) on more occasions than i can count (most recently was the summer tour of Poptone and their re-imagined versions of some notable works). they may have long since called it quits, but the boys of Bauhaus* still know how to market themselves. well done, gentleman.

 

 

*i was at this performance…still seems like only yesterday, even though it was almost 20(!) years ago.

Mr. Moonlight and The Prince

Posted in Music with tags , , , on September 20, 2017 by phanteana

someone’s gettin’ the band back together (or at least part of them): Peter Murphy has announced that an old friend of his will be joining him during a momentous 2-week residency in San Francisco next winter. this is incredibly exciting news, not only because these two haven’t performed together since the last Bauhaus album was released almost 10 years ago, but word of health issues forced Peter to postpone his performances (which were originally scheduled for late June/early July of this year). now that the concerns of Peter’s health have (mostly) been alleviated, let the show go on!

 

(now if only Bauhaus would do another reunion…it’s a long shot, i know. i got to see them twice, but a third time would be lovely)

the greatest goths in literary history

Posted in Library Science stuff, Popular Culture with tags , , , , , on August 31, 2017 by phanteana

even with Labor Day and the end of summer vacation approaching, the season doesn’t officially end until late September. so while the layers don’t have to be pulled out of storage just yet (especially if you’re in L.A. where September is chock full of heatwaves), the summer reading lists are wrapping up just in time for the school year (or the beginning of the fiscal year for some working folks). reading trends have changed over time, but one genre that has maintained consistency on teachers’ syllabuses is that of Gothic Literature (or, Goth Lit for short). you don’t necessarily have to be Goth to enjoy classics such as Frankenstein or Wuthering Heights, as these publications are universally acclaimed by a variety of readers.

where Goth Lit is concerned, most people often think of Mary Shelley or Edgar Allan Poe. yet there are plenty of other Great Goths in literary history, many of whom you wouldn’t expect to be even remotely linked to the term (save for Nick Cave, who is the only actual Goth on the list)…until you delve a little deeper into their works. you don’t have to wait until Halloween to read these authors, as their works can be accessed year-round. but if you feel the need to get into the spirit (even though it’s still shorts weather), grab a book and put on a classic Goth album of your choosing to enhance the experience.

 

Image result for goth lit meme

 

thrift store jackpot

Posted in Music with tags , , , , , , on August 24, 2017 by phanteana

i’m quite fond of thrift stores. whether it’s in my own city or when i’m travelling, i make it a point to stop in and see the unique treasures for sale ranging from books (old print smell forever!) to clothing. here’s a recent find for a dollar well spent:

 

deep cassette

 

it’s a nice companion piece to the personally autographed CD copy i’ve owned for closed to 20 years (and still plays perfectly). that’s deep.

Goth’s not dead…it’s just matured

Posted in Music, Popular Culture with tags , , , , , , on July 5, 2017 by phanteana

despite its association with doom and gloom, Goth is alive and well…or at least is a little more mature. there was a time when Goth was considered youthful, with its “sleep all day, party all night, never grow old” mentality. but since most folks are not members of the Lost Boys they eventually get jobs, have families, pay mortgages, etc. but hey, we can still wear black and listen to Bauhaus!

so what’s the issue? lack of fresh blood (no pun intended). while it’s great that many folks who were teens and 20-somethings during the Goth heyday of the 80’s or the 90’s revival are still enjoying the music and managing to venture out to events when feasible, the younger generation just doesn’t seem to take much notice of it. one factor might be the economy…because let’s face it, having fun costs money. yet there are plenty of free or low-cost events taking place to alleviate this concern. another might be feeling out of place in a crowd full of 35 to 50-somethings who often reminisce about the good ol’ days. in addition, a lot of cities just aren’t hot beds for Goth as they used to be…Los Angeles and New Orleans are still going strong, as are Berlin & London. but places like New York have fallen behind in recent years, due to rising rents and declining attendance. still, those who are loyal will be around for many years to come.