Reviews: gothic

(deathrock / (dark)wave / postpunk)

One for Jude – Hélice

A nice EP from the French formation One for Jude. Compared to their previous cd ‘Figures’ I find especially that the vocals have been drastically improved. The music can be situated between coldwave, chanson, pop and gothic rock. The music seems to be less folky than in the past, like for instance their contribution on the Sol Invictus tribute album…

Last Days of Jesus, The – Alien Road

More and more good new gothrock, post-punk and related music is being released lately. One of the most important outlets for this music is the Strobelight Records label. Their newest discovery is called The Last Days Of Jesus and come from Slowakia. This band plays a wacky sort of atypical post-punk/deathrock…

Curious – The Intimate Stranger

Curious is the name of a band that was once a Cure cover band. Nowadays they write and play their own songs. Not surprisingly their sound is still very much influenced by The Cure. This debut album, The Intimate Stranger, is filled with romantic melancholic wave/rock songs that are in the vein of the sound of The Cure during their Disintegration period…

Ikon – Psychic Vampire

There is no other gothic rock band that sounds so addictive as Ikon. This is due to their catchy guitar riffs, the nice melancholy vocals but above all because they write very good songs. All the records this Australian band has made or more or less comparable, but all are solid and enjoyable, for the above mentioned reasons. Psychic Vampire is not different from that…

1999 – Midnight People

The Swedish label Release The Bats is doing great. For a time now they have been releasing the most obscure bands in the field of post-punk and related styles. This 7” is the debut by the new Swedish band 1999 and the best release from the label until now. 1999 plays rocking dark post-punk. Their music is more punk than Bauhaus and more gothic than Au Pairs…

Nebelhexë – Laguz: Within the Lake

Andrea ‘Nebel’ Haugen has been gaining fame with her pagan folk project Hagalaz’ Runedance for some years now. On this new album, under the name Nebelhexë, the (war)drums, flutes and other authentic instruments have almost disappeared. Instead computers, electric guitars and synths have been used to make the music. What is left is Andrea Haugen’s conjuring voice…

Glass Candy – Bräckliga Kvinnor

Glass Candy is a band that plays retro post-punk, no-wave and glam rock. Their music is chaotic and hectic. The two songs on this single displays an energetic and weird band, as one you seldom will find. This single was original released in 1999 and shows the band in their early days. ‘Bräckliga Kvinnor’, the A-side, is an angular and whipping up song with the bass as the dominant factor…

V/A – New Dark Age

What is there to say about a compilation album that brings together thirty-four of the best bands and tracks of contemporary goth rock? Strobelight Records is rapidly becoming the saviour of the traditional goth sound. Through this compilation (and their other releases) they show they know what they are doing…

V/A – Strobelights vol. 1

Next to the compilation series New Dark Age, with contemporary goth rock bands, Strobelight Records has started yet another series. Strobelights is a collection of goth rock classics and personal favorites of label boss Paul Cuska (also from the band Kiss The Blade). His aim is to give some extra exposure to this type of (goth) music, which is not much heard anymore nowadays…

Le Triste Sire – Effusions…

Le Triste Sire has what might be called a classic darkwave sound. The music is slow, sounds sad, tragic and dark, but also very atmospheric. From the eleven tracks on this album only one has vocals. This song, ‘Deliverance’, is also present in an instrumental version. Musically this song is typical for the sound of the record and that of Le Triste Sire…

Mephisto Waltz – Nightingale

Mephisto Waltz represent a classic type of gothic rock for quite some years now. The band was formed by Barry Galvin in 1985 after he left Christian Death. This single contains two solid tracks. The classic goth guitars sound haunting, the voice of female vocalist Christianna fit the music nicely, she varies very well between a sweet and a robust style…

Fertile Reality – The dune of the mill

This Dutch 5-piece band is influenced by the likes of Joy Division, Interpol, Wire, The Cure, Ride and The Cranes. So they operate somewhere on the borders of wave, indie, shoegaze, and rock, with a somewhat dark edge. This cd, their second demo album, is quite varied. Fertile Reality does not always chose the easiest road in their compositions. But overall their songs are quite melodic…

Gerstein – Here comes sickness 1990-2001

“Gerstein was born in fall 1984 and since then started to experiment with sounds and emotions. This cd collects many of the rarest and unreleased tracks.” Gerstein is a name I remember from the past. This Italian project was present on some samplers in the early 90’s, like Taste This (Discordia)…

DeSADE – Suicide Lounge

Last year there have been quite some good gothic rock releases. Maybe there is even some indication that there is a renewed interest in classic gothic music and that this will continue (a new generation of ‘goths’ are discovering the history of this music). DeSADE is a band with a typical American, sleazy, deathrock sound…

Dust Fear of Lover – s/t

Dust Fear of Lover is an Italian project from someone called Death Boy, who is also a member of the duo Psycho D-Vein. A cdr with 12 tracks, including a track by Chrisma (?) and the Joy Division cover ‘Decades’. Musicwise this goes in the direction of postpunk, with quite some psychedelic noise added and a little shoegaze…

Swann danger – Swann danger

Last year a lot of good gothic rock has been released. Swann danger is on of the latest new bands that are among the best new comers I have heard. The five tracks on this EP are, together with the latest Black Ice EP, the best new material that has been released the last months in the post-punk/gothic rock genre…

Screams for Tina – 2003 A.D.

It has been silent around legendary, American based, deathrock band Screams For Tina for about ten years, except for the song ‘Life of sin’ which was featured on a compilation. That track is also present on this new EP. 2003 A.D. opens with the track ‘Standing in the rain’…

DVAR – Rakhilim

Monopoly Records is a brandnew label, based in Moscow, Russia, and with a professional look and feel. Their first release was an album by the Russian formation Cyclotimia, shortly followed by “Rakhilim”, the third album by Dvar. I did not know them too well, apart from a track on the ‘Russian gothic compilation’, but I’ve read that they are pretty eclectic…

Collection d`Arnell Andrea – Villers-aux-Vents

Collection d`Arnell Andrea has been among my favourite groups for quite a while. This French ensemble was founded by Jean-Christophe d’Arnell and Chloé St Liphard in 1986. Their music is a mixture of classical influences, cold wave, rock and heavenly voices. Often their songs have a very melancholic mood…

Chamber – Ghost stories and fairy-tales

The second cd by Chamber, also known as L’Orchestre de Chambre Noir. “Ghost stories & Fairy-tales” comes in a luxurious digipack, with various drawings and an additional textsheet. This German ensemble around Marcus Testory has delivered twelve new songs, or in their own words, ‘twelve handcrafted tales of live and love itself’…