Vnv nation, dance music, goth vs. punk, all of that stuff

This isn’t actually a video, just a song. And to folks in the goth scene, it’s mostly a played out one.

When I first got into goth, it was for the darker, heavier stuff by and large: the swans and skinny puppy. New Model Army, who aren’t as heavy but certainly aren’t electronic dance. I used to really begrudge EBM (electronic body music: the combination of industrial and electronica). I hated that goth music had “gone to shit”, had “just become techno with lyrics.” In short, I was a judgmental idiot.

And it was this song, Darkangel by VNV Nation, that eventually won me over. It’s just so damn catchy and danceable, but still all spooky and sad.

In the anarcho scene these days, punk is dead. Long live (shudder) Michael Jackson. The pop dance party is the thing. Most of my friends think I hate dancing, because if I end up at a party, unless I’m drunk I stand in the corner, maybe talk to people or something. My goth friends know me better: I love to dance. Hell, it’s the reason I wear skirts. (So much fun to dance in!)

This summer when I was in Portland, VNV Nation had some posters up on posts around town for a show they were playing. VNV Nation, in case you don’t know, uses futurist/german-expressionist images. Think of the movie metropolis. Lots of “into the bold future of humanity!” kind of images. Which is a lot of the same stuff that fascists adopted as well. So all the punks were in a mild uproar, trying to figure of if this was some nazi band. Fortunately, someone said “we should ask Magpie.” VNV Nation is not some nazi band. Goths just use different imagery than punks. VNV Nation is explicitly anti-war, anyhow. From their environmentalist song “Carbon”: “By our blindness and stupidity, we kill everything.”

2 thoughts on “Vnv nation, dance music, goth vs. punk, all of that stuff”

  1. I’ve been on a bit of an EBM/Synthpop kicklately, VNV, Covenant, Wolfshiem, Depeche Mode, and Beborn Beton mostly, although I’ve been mixing in a heavy dose of Nitzer Ebb.

    The strong militaristic/empire imagery seems prety standard with anything remotely industrial, regardless of politics. From KMFDM to any of the Andy La Plegua projects in the new school to more old school like Nitzer Ebb, Front 242, etc.

    As you know the imagry can be turned around though… check out this print an Agorist friend did:

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