Oh, how I love Bauhaus, like any good goth. But I hadn’t really known any of their songs to be political until my dear friend pointed this song out to me today for this series.
Bauhaus: Double Dare
I dare you, to be real
To touch a flickering flame
The pangs of dark delight
Don’t cower in night fright
Don’t back away just yet
From destinations set
I dare you to be proud
To dare to shout aloud
For convictions that you feel
Like sound from bells to peal
I dare you to speak of your despise
For bureaucracy, hypocracy- all liars
My friend just let me know about this band, a sort of supergroup of gothpunk and punk bands. And this is a useful place to point out that, regardless of the genre, being radical in some elements of politics doesn’t mean that you don’t have some problematic themes in your music.
DAF, Deutsch-Amerikanische Freundschaft wrote this song as a sort of bizarre satire. It’s useful to point out because goth, as a subculture, is less afraid to mock fascism by pretending to embrace than, say, punk. But politics can be a lot blurrier in the spooky subculture, and of course there are those who do embrace fascism, though they’re very much the minority.
Okay, I don’t really know what this song is about totally, but it’s about the earth being destroyed and how the earth will fight back, and that what we have is only borrowed from the earth. I don’t know what all the stuff about believers and secrets is about though.
I’ve liked Rasputina for close to a decade… I’d heard them some, and then saw them play in Pittsburgh and liked them more still. The song above is about The Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire in NYC in 1911 when 146 garment workers were killed, since they were locked into the building during work hours and they couldn’t escape the flames.
I’m working on a magazine entitled Graceless: A Journal Of the Radical Gothic. It will be a print magazine (available for free download), black and white interior, glossy color cover, perfect-bound. It will probably be published by Strangers In A Tangled Wilderness, but I’m not sure. The politics will be broader than just anarchism (but without electoral or right-wing politics), and our interpretation of “gothic” is fairly loose as well. I’m looking for contributors. Specifically, I’m looking for: Continue reading Radical goth magazine looking for contributors!→
Lexx Sinister turned me on to Birmingham 6, a danish industrial act that is named for the Irish falsely accused ex-prisoners the Birmingham six. They’re pretty blatantly political, with songs with titles like policestate.
When VNV Nation came to Portland, and their posters were up all over town on lampposts and whatnot, my friends approached me and asked if they were fascist. Gothic bands use different imagery than punk bands, it’s true. VNV Nation uses futurist imagery. The fascists were also influenced by fascist imagery. It’s a logical fallacy to then presume VNV Nation to be fascist, which they rather explicitly aren’t. (Though I can understand the worry if you’re not familiar with the goth aesthetic).
I used to kind of hate VNV Nation, years ago, because to me they represented the electronic “techno with words” that had strayed from the “true goth,” most of which had been written when I was like 8. Eventually, I listened to the song Darkangel (warning: the fan video uses the font papyrus) enough and realized I loved it. I love dancing, or driving, to VNV.