Gothtober 2017 – 17th of October / – Glory Days

I wanted to put Amnesia in here. I really, really did.
Amnesia is an amazing song. One of my many, many favourites.

But. BUT!

I’ve put in enough old and older and ageing songs already.
It’s time to go for something newer.

And will you look at that, the sixth chapter in the Dreamweb saga has just been released! And I do mean /just/. On the 13th of October 2017, to be exact.

And it’s amazing.

The whole saga is a really beautiful thing. Six albums telling a story. Started in 2004, it continues until today.

Concept albums have always fascinated me. The very first one I was consciously subjected to, was when my dear Moonchild told me to listen to “Be” by Pain of Salvation. … Yeah, I managed to miss Avantasia and a few other things before. I still don’t know how. (I mean, I knew /of/ Avantasia, but I wasn’t particularly into concept-album stuff back then. Apart from possibly Prog Rock, if that counts. Which it might. I don’t know. Prog makes things kind of… Hazy.)

Anyway: Storytelling.

Many songs that I call favourites are very story-heavy. Not simply consisting of stanzas and choruses, but also containing changing patterns that mimic the flow of the story.;

And also having time to breathe and expand and develop. By now you’ve probably realized that I have a very slight penchant for longer songs. Barely noticeable I’m sure.

But those long songs, with or without lyrics, give me something I deeply enjoy: The ability to dive into and fully lose myself in a song. And so I’m drawn to the genres that offer such fare: Many goth sub-genres, Prog of all kinds, many forms of Metal, Blues, Jazz, classical and neo-classical music, all forms of ambient and even quite a few Rap and Hip-Hop offerings.

I simply love bonding with music, for lack of a clearer explanation.

And so one day I stumbled upon A dark, synth, cyberpunk concept /act/.

I simply couldn’t resist.

From this day onward, always were a part of playlists meant to go with Shadowrun and Mage.

It’s just a perfect fit.

It’s also a perfect fit for walking and driving through urban autumn scapes. And thus: Perfect Gothtober material.

Dortmund Hombruch, 14th of October, 2017

Dortmund Hombruch, 14th of October, 2017

Gothtober 2017 – 16th of October / No More – Suicide Commando

Let’s do the time-warp again…!

Yeah. Man, that’s an old song.
And not one that would have been grouped under the (back then not even established) Goth umbrella.

But it didn’t just inspire a few mad Belgians’ band name, with its international success it paved the way for Darkwave to evolve. While it itself was firmly grounded in the (sadly only briefly existing, kind of like the Trip-Hop of its time…) No-Wave post-punk, coldwave inspired genre, the sound and style it created were quickly incooperated into later Darkwave acts. (Anne Clark’s “Changing Places” is a good example. Sleeper in Metropolis, All Night Party, Lover’s Audition and Wallies are goth classics themselves.)

It was also made in the time where electronic music of all kinds was breaking new ground. There was no Industrial, no Techno, no EBM, no Hardcore… It was all new and exciting and fresh and experimental.

Throbbing Gristle were still the new shit. Nitzer/Ebb were yet to release their first record.

And the audiences for both were bound to be way less Goth than today.

Early ‘alternative’ electronic music was its own umbrella terms. Only when the 90s came around and lines began to harden, did some acts find suddenly being part of a wholly different genre. While some (like DJ Hell, The Hacker and Ellen Alien) straddled the line for quite some time, many did chose between varying shades of darkness. Some went Goth and started to form the backbones of the EBM/Industrial (which spawned Futurepop/Synthpop as synthesis between harsher EBM and softer Darwkave) scene. Some went “Techno” (and would later split into all the varying styles, from Hardcore to Trance to Acid and Jungle and Goa and, and, and…).

And some, the darkest of them all, went full-on pop. It was only those last few that would turn their backs on experimentation and collaboration in total.

Then, later, in the early 2000s, Techno and EBM/Industrial would meet again and birth the (dreadfully named, and often dreadfully blunt) ‘Hellectro’ genre which would open up a small and still smoldering civil war inside European Goth culture. (It’s 2017 now. And we’ve still got “No Neon!” dresscodes as a lingering result from that debacle.)

Musical Genres are a weird thing.

Make them too general and they loose all meaning. (Goth. Metal. Techno. Electro. Classical. Apart from the most base similarities, you could pick two bands out of any one of those ‘genres’ and get two bands that are worlds apart.)

Make them too specific, and it becomes unwieldy, hard to categorize and harder to monetize. So many big publications as well as all major labels frown on something like “Post-millennium Electroclash Punk”. Which, while specific, is hard to put under a meaningless and shallow ‘review’. (Mia.’s “Hieb und Stichfest”, by the way. To this day one of my most beloved albums.)

Bands also shift and morph between them, seldom staying firmly inside one. (Compare Svbway to Sally 1994 vs. Svbway to Sally 1996 vs. Svbway to Sally 2003 vs. Svbway to Sally 2014…)

Although, of course, there are exceptions.

Neither approach to musical progress is the ‘right’ one.
And it’s also okay for fans of a band to ‘drop’ them if they develop into a style those fans don’t like any more. As long as they aren’t fucking assholes about it and try to ruin it for those who actually enjoy the new direction.

Progress in perfecting your skills and abilities is good.
Progress in evolving your skills and abilities into something else is good.

If not for those two things, they sounds you like now, liked before and will like in the future would never have come to exist.

Only standing still and stagnating is bad.

Dortmund, Südfriedhof, 14th of October 2017

Dortmund, Südfriedhof, 14th of October 2017

I promise that tomorrow’s track will be a new one. ;)
A REALLY new one. So people younger than 40 can actually appreciate this collection as well. :D Continue reading