As all of you gothic rockers out there know, it’s currently a very healthy, varied genre. Indeed, labelling music does it few favours; you either dig a band or you don’t. You can’t force it. But if we must define a genre, Then Comes Silence are, no offence, way ahead of their contemporaries. Perhaps in part because Alex Svenson has been writing and performing for a long time, honing the sound and range of the band. 

This, their seventh album, is the first on the Metropolis label, who were no doubt impressed by the ‘Hunger’ album released in 2022. From the opening notes of ‘Ride Or Die’, their sound is instantly recognisable, whilst across the album the keyboards are more prominent than before, which keeps it interesting and gives the band more scope. Alex refers to their bond, their dedication to each other; “you read my mind, I’m right behind, together we die”.

‘Like A Hammer’ is even more infectious, it’s on regular rotation chez moi. Apparently, each of their albums has “an ABBA moment, a Ramones moment and a  Judas Priest moment”, and this is their ABBA one. They certainly have a knack with addictive chord sequences, so there is that similarity. The metronomic drumming of Jonas really drives the song along.

‘Feel The Cold’ wraps layers of sound around your ears, pumping synths and simple, effective melodies. Since Mattias left, Hugo handles all the guitar parts, and as they’ve shown on their recent tours, this works really well live in conjunction with the backing tracks. ‘Tears And Cries’ is a dark, glam duet with shades of the Glitter Band. ‘Stay Strange’ melds a punchy riff to an unexpected middle-eight, and ‘Stiffs’, with its refrain of “if I can’t have your soul, I can take your bones” should alert the local mortician, with an end like a haunted merry-go-round.

‘Blind Eye’ is the kind of tune that longtime fan Wayne Hussey would be proud of; sinister and catchy. As he said, they’ve got the tunes and the looks. And, of course, Alex’s voice. But the ace up their sleeve (sorry) is that they are greater than the sum of their influences. They have created their own personality. ‘The Masquerade’ proves this by sounding only like Then Comes Silence.

‘Never Change’ has a chiming, spacious riff, similar to Killing Joke, while ‘Dead Friend’ gets a little heavier on the guitars. ‘Runners’ is one of their most atmospheric songs to date, a sign of their desire for progression without losing their identity. With ‘Ghost House’, the album ends on one of their most commercially accessible songs, worthy of radio play, in an ideal world. I’d already preordered, knowing that Then Comes Silence always deliver quality tunes. With every new release, more people are recognising that this band are special. Join us. W.O.O.O.U, as they would say.

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Author: Martin Chamarette

The first taste of live music in 2024 is a trip across the border and into the Exchange for a night of Cider and black and guyliner n Goth for Swedens Agent Side Grinder are opening tonight’s show in support of the most excellent Then Comes Silence.

With a healthy turnout Agent Side Grinder takes to the stage bathed in a sea of Fog (as you’d expect) and turn up the electronic goth tones for a forty-five-minute take on some very impressive Soft Cell meets Depeche Mode whilst absorbing the Gary Numan back catalogue synth Goth (if you looking for a yardstick to measure their sound then these seem like the perfect touching point) This three piece (Two Keyboards and one vocalist) deliver a modern twist on ‘Speak and Spell’ meets ‘Non Stop Erotic Cabaret’ hailing from Stockholm and already having delivered six studio albums in their almost twenty year existence I’m almost ashamed to say this was my first time seeing the band.

Supporting their 2023 album ‘Jack Vegas’ the band got on with business and aided by the most excellent PA in the Exchange they were able to turn it up and dive in. Songs like ‘Waiting Room’, ‘Madeleine’ and ‘Wolf Hour’ sounded excellent and bringing Alex from Then Comes Silence up for a few tracks added another level to their sound that came to life with the additional bass guitar, giving the songs more depth and a big bottom end. Emanuel led this synth trio through an impressive set and I’m glad I was there early enough to catch the perfect opener to ease you back into the live arena after a few weeks off from live shows.

Then Comes Silence are back to a three-piece and take to the stage and proceed to spend the next hour or so delivering the perfect guitar-based Goth Rock currently doing the rounds anywhere. The three-piece kicks off with ‘Ticket To Funerals’ and roll straight into ‘Flashing Pangs Of Love’. Hugo is whirling in circles as he throws out the Brian James Lords-inspired riffs drenched in delay and chorus that evoked memories of a young Daniel Ash at his prime so much so that I commented he played the riff of ‘Fashing Pangs’ at about two o’clock that afternoon such was the delay on the overdrive. However, the sound as per usual in the Exchange is second to none, and Then Comes Silence are playing a blinder. A well-oiled machine that they are they throw out banger after banger touching on Goth greats Such as the aforementioned Lords Of The New Church as well as a host of other post-punk bands who dabbled in Goth. It’s no surprise that Wayne Hussey holds them in such high regard with songs like ‘We Lose The Night’ and ‘Warm Like Blood’ dripping with sheer class and a hint of The Mish in their DNA.

A frenzied pit of Gothness broke out mid-set and a more polite and gentile mosh pit you won’t find anywhere this side of Hades. The fuzz of ‘Strangers’ gave me goosebumps and the relentless attack on my senses was further heightened as the fantastic ‘Strange Kicks’ played out. There wasn’t much in the way of banter between songs more preferring to let the music do their talking and to be fair they sounded fantastic as we headed for the final Hurrah as ‘The Rest Will Follow’ made way for the inspired ‘Animals’ and without fanfare, we were done.

That was nothing short of awesome. How this band are playing small clubs is a mystery, they should be rolling through towns with trucks hauling their gear and large concert venues being laid waste with plumes of dry ice and the sound of distorted decaying riffs ringing through your ears.

This old Goth can go out into the cold winter air happy in the knowledge that 2024 got off to the best possible start gig-wise. I only hope 2024 sees a new album and more live shows from my favourite Swedish Goth Rock band. That set my friends will take some beating and its only just January.


Author: Dom ‘Nosferatu’ Daley

The sun is still blazing in the sky over a hot and sweaty Barcelona evening as a line of people zigzags up a metal staircase to Club Razzmatazz where a packed out room is bathed in dry ice as the PA creaks to ‘Tadeusz (1912-1988)’ and the already sweaty audience breaks out into a heaving mass of football sing-a-long excitement before the band walks on for one last hurrah around Europe on the Deja Vu tour.

The few times I caught The Mission last year they were on fine form breaking in the new drummer just ahead of the UK tour post covid lockdowns and they were (pardon the pun) on a Mission and full of energy. Barca expects and as the band winds up ‘Beyond The Pail’ the club is jumping and with hardly any room to breath its a heaving mass of swathing bodies singing along and I’m imediately taken back to the early days where packed clubs like Bristol Studio or New Ocean Club in Cardiff would see you carried along in a sea of bodies well this was like that. ‘Tomorrow Never Knows’ was played early doors before the band lashed out ‘Serpent’s Kiss’ and an enthusiastic ‘Over The Hills’ this was warming up to be something special.

The sound was good and the band sounded well rehearsed and full of energy. With a great mix of songs from way back to more recent offerings, it was ‘Within The Deepest Darkness (fearful)’ when we could take a breather and take in just how bloody good a band the Mission are. The show was taking shape in manageable chunks as the audience sang back every word from the epic ‘Kingdom Come’ and ‘Stay With Me’ it was ‘Butterfly On A Wheel’ where Wayne let the audience sing back to him and I think he was impressed how loud and in tune it was. the main set was brought to an end with an energetic ‘Wasteland’ before ‘Deliverance’ saw the band leave the stage for the first time. A dozen songs had just flown by and I’d found myself in a pocket of air towards the front as the band returned for a trio of songs culminating in an exhilarating ‘Crystal Ocean’ that was the highlight of the set for me. How or why I don’t know but tonight I was moved by this song even though I’d heard it live dozens and dozens of times the whole experience was uplifting and life affirming and I love that Rock and Roll can do that even in a sea of top tunes one will stand tall.

The band left the stage for a second time before Wayne returned alone to announce that one of the band needed a toilet break but would say who so it was left for a welcome return of ‘Love Me To Death’ which only left an epic rendition of ‘Tower Of Strength’ before it was done leaving only Wayne and Simon to twist out a feedback soaked ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’ and then it was done. Off to Madrid for one last time as we filed out into the warm night air happy I’d once again seen The Mission deliver the goods and cement their place as one of the best live bands still treading the boards.

I know they’ve alluded to this possibly being their last foray into Europe but I’d ask they reconsider that and maybe do it one last time next year or the year after and I’ll be there and by the looks of it so will a lot of others. Another night of Deja Vu with the awesome Mission. Gracias amigos.



Author: Dom Daley

The first ever complete overview of Goth culture will be released in March 2023.

Finally, after a decade of work, countless interviews and immersing himself into the culture, John Robb’s definitive book is a journey deep into The Art Of Darkness. The first in-depth book on Goth is a deep dive into the enduring culture and the social, historical and political backdrop that created the space for The Art Of Darkness to thrive.

A deep dive that takes in the fall of Rome, medieval gothic architecture, dark folk tales, romantic poets, Lord Byron, Aleister Crowley and march more before accelerating through the Doors before arriving at the classic post punk period.

The book comes with interviews with the likes of Andrew Eldritch, Killing Joke, Bauhaus, The Cult, The Banshees, The Damned, Einsturzende Neubauten, Danielle Dax, Johnny Marr, Trent Reznor, Adam Ant, Laibach, The Cure, Nick Cave and many others, this is the definitive walk on the dark side and into the very heartland of Goth.

The shadow of Goth is now everywhere and The Art Of Darkness is central to these dystopian times…but where did it come from?

Every generation has got to deal with the blues – embrace the melancholy. Find a beauty in the darkness, a poetry in sex and death…

Whether it’s the Roman love of ghost stories, European macabre folk tales of the Middle Ages, Romantic poets, or the original Gothic tribes sacking the Eternal City, a walk on the dark side has always had its attractions. In the post-punk period, Generation Xerox saw music, clothes and culture come together to create one of the most enduring pop cultures of them all that still resonates to this day.

It may have been a retrospective term for a scene that was already thriving, but its back story goes back millennia. The book starts with the fall of Rome and ends with Instagram and Tik Tok influencers, taking diversions through Lord Byron, European folk tales, Indian sadhus, Gothic architecture, Romantic poets, philosophers and idealists before coalescing through the dark end of the Sixties’ youthquake, and then blooming like Baudelaire’s Les Fleurs Du Mal in the post-punk period.

Defying the broken heartland of the post-industrial cities, the semi-forgotten satellite towns and the grim real politic of the Thatcher years, this was a post-punk culture full of dark dance and a death disco. The music soundtracked the style and a Stygian obsidian soundtrack fused the many fragments of culture that had been flirted with in the post-war pop narrative; a darker culture that began to coalesce around the holy trinity of the Doors, the Velvets and the Stooges in the late Sixties before flirting with glam rock, being amplified by punk, exploding as Goth, and then splintering into electronic dance music, industrial, psychobilly and new Goth, before finally filtering through dystopian Hollywood blockbusters, modern literature and throughout the modern world.

In the late Seventies, Goth culture emerged around a clutch of bands who found a new form of beauty in the apocalyptic foreboding, as a new youth tribe took glam rock from the catwalk to the cobbles and onto their own dance floors, creating their own art of darkness.

Pre order – Here

A bit of retro Goth Doom never hurt anyone did it?  Seeing as it’s coming into spring and summer I need some tunes for sitting outside in the blistering Welsh sunshine and as the first drum beats break cover and the soaring and searing overdriven guitars sharpen their riffs I apply the corpse paint and turn up the volume on this Human Trophy.


It’s like the Sisterhood grew up bitter and twisted and melted all their Numan albums. The cover art is the work of the weird kid from school who nobody went to junior school with and has heard him speak but his art is well weird and the soundtrack to the art is the music it houses ‘Binding Me’ is a deadpan slice of rapid drum machine beats with vocals dripping in echo as the song charges to its sudden conclusion.   To be fair it’s pretty much the pattern for the whole record Goth not for the faint hearted.  It makes Joy Division sound like Jive Bunny or Newlydeads singing Stock Aitkin and Waterman.


Saying all that ‘Empty Places’ is a belter of a tune with its searing guitar being wrestled from feeding back I got sidetracked realising the vinyl is indeed Goth purple in colour which is a nice touch and the fact that there is a track entitled ‘Forming Horror’ which to be fair is another great track that sails fairly close to being an upbeat pop song – if you close your eyes that is.  The title track is almost upbeat as well in a Goth sort of way.


The album finishes on ‘Blood Apex’ and the grinding bassline and hammer-like drum beat are giving me vertigo it’s like falling into a vortex and being touched by demons as you fall.  You either love or hate it I guess there is no in between with pure Goth.  When its loud and I’m in the mood its spell binding when I’m not in the mood however I just turn it up a little bit louder 😉


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UK TOUR 2021

28.07.21  YORK Fulford Arms
29.07.21  NEWCASTLE Cluny
30.07.21  EDINBURGH Opium
31.07.21  GLASGOW Ivory Blacks
03.08.21  MANCHESTER Night People
04.08.21  NOTTINGHAM Rescue Rooms
05.08.21  WOLVERHAMPTON Slade Rooms
06.08.21  BRISTOL Exchange
07.08.21  LONDON Garage
tickets and information / /

Due to the ongoing Covid-19 crisis, Canadian post-punk goth act The Birthday Massacre have been forced to postpone a November 2020 UK tour to promote their new album, ‘Diamonds’, which was released in late March. All nine shows have now been rearranged for the summer of 2021, as per the itinerary above.

The tour will be the first opportunity for UK fans to see two recently installed group members, drummer Phil Elliott and bassist Brett Carruthers, perform with the band. Carruthers is also the frontman of fellow Toronto-based act A Primitive Evolution, who released an excellent album of industrial tinged rock entitled ‘Becoming’ on Metropolis Records in 2018 and have remained an ongoing concern.

Born on this very day in 1957 Daniel Ash of the parish of Bauhaus.  Ash played guitar in the Goth legends before forming Love & Rockets and going on to enjoy artistic credibility as a solo artist and most recently he reunited with bandmate Kevin Haskins to form Poptone a friend he has known since infant school. 

Ash had become friends with Peter Murphy during his teenage years. Ash went to art school and Murphy went to work in a printing factory. They met up again five years later and Ash suggested forming a band. Rigging up a makeshift rehearsal space, Ash played an Echo 12 – bar blues, while Murphy sang a series of newspaper articles. Four weeks later, they formed Bauhaus and recorded “Bela Lugosi’s Dead”.

After nearly five years Bauhaus fell apart and Ash put together Tones on Tail again with drummer Kevin Haskins. As Ash described them: “We were a motley crew of individuals who essentially wanted to sound like a band from Venus or Mars!” it was to be a band that lasted until the mid ’80s.

Ash founded Love and Rockets in 1985 with Haskins and David J, also of Bauhaus. The band lasted until 2009 when Ash called it a day and stated that was it and a band he would never return to.  During the last ten years, he has been experimenting more with electronic music, both with Love and Rockets and as a solo artist. Since the last reformation of Bauhaus, however, he has been returning to a more guitar-based rock sound. In 2008, Bauhaus released ‘Go Away White’, (their first studio album in 25 years) which was followed by a world tour.  Funnily enough the very same year Love & Rockets played Coachella Music and Arts Festival, funny that.

It was March 2017, Daniel Ash, Haskins (obviously) and Haskin’s daughter Diva Dompé formed POPTONE and a US tour, featuring songs by all the three bands the pair had performed in together.

Ash has so far managed five solo albums, Five with Bauhaus, One with Tone & Tails and one with poptone as well as a plethora of EPs live albums compilations and anthologies. Ash has and continues to be a pioneer and influence plenty of guitar players and songwriters.


If you were to cross members of Nekromantix, The Brains, Stellar Corpses, and Rezurex! You’d get a batty mix of Psychobilly punk rock and roll so it’s a bit of luck that just that has waled into the ether and dropped onto RPM HQ. With special guest slots form the likes of Jyrki 69 of The 69 Eyes and Danny B. Harvey! It’s fair to say I was sitting up waiting for the air to be filled with the sound of some pretty heady rock and roll. It’s fair to say I wasn’t disappointed.

As I scan the cover I notice a few surprises in the choice of covers ranging from The Damned and some pretty famouse pop tunes given a good seeing to. With fifteen original tracks and five psychobilly-infused covers including their renditions of Danzig (“Mother”), the king of surf Dick Dale (“Misirlou”), The Damned (“Love Song”), Gloria Jones (“Tainted Love”), Portugal. The Man (“Feel It Still”), and Panic! At The Disco “Say Amen” (Saturday Night). To be fair ‘Tainted Love’ has previously been given the Psychobilly treatment from Living End and this is a very similar version. also doing Danzig isn’t too much of a stretch either seeing as both vocals are very similar.  The one that really intrigued me was them taking on the mighty Damned and ‘Love Song’ and to be fair it’s such a monumental tune its never going to touch the original but as far as interpretations go this is decent.  Great crunchy guitar with the drums rolling through like a steam train and whilst they remain fairly faithful its a great attempt and Damned fan needn’t look away. As far as ‘Mother’ goes this is cool as I’m not a huge Danzig fan and I guess it would have been too easy to pick a Misfits tune so this is good and once it breaks open I love it.


As for the original tunes I love the groove they get into on ‘Graveyard Girl’ and the guest vocalist work of Jyrki is suitably Gothic and dark How cool would it be if he took a bit of this direction back to 69 Eyes? to be fair twenty tracks is a lot of music to work your way through and whilst the heart is always Rockabilly there is enough variety here and with the inclusion of the covers breaks up the record.  Saying that it could have been two albums six months apart but hey what do I know?

If you want a bunch of songs to pick through to try before you buy then look no further than ’50s inspired ‘She Wolf’ or the melodic ‘We Own The Night’ which is like one of the best songs the Misfits never got hold of. ‘Getaway Car’ is poptastic from the acoustic guitars it’s like a modern ‘Leader Of The Pack’ and could easily sell huge in the American alternative market and crossover. ‘The Man’ follows suit I love the dripping reverb on that guitar lick an interesting cover, to say the least.

Fans of the other bands these guys are in will be interested in checking this out as will rockabilly rebels and fans of quality Rock and Roll out looking for a whole lot of music for your money and excellent tunes they are too.  Pick it up!




Author: Dom Daley