Goth Rock

Artist: 
Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds
Label: 
Bad Seed Ltd

For several decades, Nick Cave has presented himself as the anti-St. Peter. Cave is the sleazy, slicked-back doorman at the gates of Hell who sees your fake ID and lets you in anyways. But for all the doom and gloom of both Nick Cave's bands (Birthday Party and the Bad Seeds), he always seemed detached, more an omniscient narrator than an actual actor in the plots he wove. Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds newest record Skeleton Tree bucks that trend for an awful reason. In 2015, Cave lost his teenage son off a cliff in an accident in Brighton, England.

Sounds Like: 
Tom Waits
Sounds Like: 
Oneohtrix Point Never
Name: 
Nick Kivi
Date Reviewed: 
09/28/2016
Artist: 
Preoccupations
Label: 
Jagjaguwar

Preoccupations is the band formerly known as Viet Cong, so if you know them or their previous band Women then you've already got a ballpark approximation of Preoccupations' sound in your head. Alternately feedbacky or shimmery guitar, blown out synth, distorted bass, pounding drums, etc and there's a similar focus on incorporating ambient passages between sections of more traditional songwriting.

Sounds Like: 
Viet Cong
Sounds Like: 
Women
Sounds Like: 
Joy Division
Sounds Like: 
Future Islands
Name: 
Andrew Boring
Date Reviewed: 
09/14/2016
Artist: 
Van Halst
Label: 
Van Halst

World of Make Believe is Canadian band, Van Halst's debut full-length album and while I was really excited to hear another metal band that had a female vocalist, I was slightly disappointed. This album is not bad by any means, I suppose I just expected more from it. I wasn't really into the vocalist's, Kami Van Halst, voice as it seemed to constantly be at the same pitch and felt almost emotionless. While this isn't necessarily a bad thing, it's just something I'm not personally into.

Sounds Like: 
Halestorm
Sounds Like: 
This Moment
Name: 
Danielle Perry
Date Reviewed: 
03/08/2016
Artist: 
Grave Babies
Label: 
Hardly Art

Grave Babies combines the elements of vaguely 80s rock beats, the darkest of 90s grunge, and some melancholy harmonies to achieve this deeply intense album. There are some light metal components to their sound that draw out the seductively scary vibe Grave Babies puts out. The band is based out of Seatlle, but you would think their music fits better in a zombie version of The Breakfast Club. Their themes are contemporary gothic in nature, ranging from the topics of war, aggression, and punishment to a song called "Beautiful Lie" (track 2).

Sounds Like: 
Alice in Chains
Sounds Like: 
Killing Joke
Sounds Like: 
Alt-J's sludgier, spookier step-cousin.
Name: 
Brianna Bartos
Date Reviewed: 
09/08/2015
Artist: 
Xiu Xiu
Label: 
Kill Rock Stars

Xiu Xiu's seventh album is surprisingly rhythmic while remaining its bizarre goth-rock sound. Jamie Stewart warbles like the vampire musical man from Forgetting Sarah Marshall, and does it with such intensity-- he cries at almost every one of his live shows. Trust me, it's bizarre. Meshing fragmented electronic beats with whistles and bells, over depressing lyrics about bulimia and death, Xiu Xiu brings their music to an entire new level of loathing of the human existence. Seriously, listen to this if you want to experience a happy (sad, confusing) nightmare.

Sounds Like: 
Jame Stewart
Sounds Like: 
Ten in the Swear Jar
Name: 
Hannah Hollins
Date Reviewed: 
02/16/2010
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