24th November 2018
Review and videos by Demitri Levantis
London was catapulted back into the dark side of ages past tonight as some mighty fine Gothic, Industrial and Darkwave bands took the happy revellers on a journey through time and space, to a melancholic place I can only liken to Berlin in the early 90s.
Lord of the Lost, all the way from Hamburg were in town to promote their new album ‘Thornstar’ at The Garage in Highbury and first on the bill we had some raw, homegrown talent.
Auger, a Darkwave duo from the north of England, the ideal place for such music to spring up. Which certainly felt the ideal setting as these two young men blasted some finely dark beats that sounded ghoulish and frightening but beautiful to the naked ear.
Spine tingling melancholia drifted as the drum machine and keys operated by vocalist Kyle Wilson bounced around the room, and the dark blue lights lade a foreboding shadow over their electronic symphonies which the people around me fondly likened to Bauhaus.
This band were what I’d call a close take on Boy Harsher, had they gone full blown trad Goth and spent a winter in Leeds. Very well paced beats, finely jagged guitars and heart-warming vocals aplenty.
Second on the bill was some more homegrown talent all the way from Coventry. Deadfilmstar, a band who pride themselves on a mix of Goth with traditional Rock n Roll.
It definitely felt like a dark set of tunes to bop along to, imagine high pitched screams and wails possessing your innocent heart and having you leap and skip to some catchy guitars and synths, as the puppet master gazes on in delight of your obedience, as vocalist Gary gazed hungrily into the audience.
Deadfilmstar did remind me of the hundreds of hours I’ve spent enjoying dark underground horror and sci-fi movies and collecting morbid paraphernalia, so they’re that band to add to your collection if you enjoy the darker side of entertainment, be it audible or visual.
(Apologies for the bad videos, I’m not a videographer and don’t have the most advanced phone).
Many a reveller was swaying jovially, so a fun band to get the crowd going in prep for the headliners.
Next up it was time for something from the headliner’s homeland: Unzucht, a band who seem to epitomise everything one would picture when given the term: Dark Metal.
It was all here, the melancholic crooning vocals, deep and harshly tuned guitars and a melody that rang over the sentimental wailings and angry growls that make Gothic styles of metal both horrific and beautiful.
Having grown up listening to Gothic Metal, one can say this band were not quite in the same realm as Paradise Lost or My Dying Bride, but they had a typically European take on this darkened genre, the same way one has heard people talk about different scenes having their own sounds in other genres like Black Metal.
Germany was what screamed from Unzucht as they sailed down a sea of notes to give London a good taste of the Dark Metal scene in central Europe. Nothing short of excellent and nothing short of European.
If that was not enough to tell London that Germany is the capital of all things dark and alternative, the headline act did not disappoint in giving off said statement.
Promoting their new album ‘Thornstar’, Lord of the Lost ascended to the stage dressed to slay all in their path with the most memorable Gothic tunes that would please both a metalhead kid at a shindig like Bloodstock or have an experienced trad Goth elder bopping along on the dancefloor.
These boys meant business from the word go and I was pleased to see they had both a strong passion for their alternative identity and a sense of humour – it was more than mesmerising seeing them play a cover of Lady Gaga’s hit ‘Bad Romance.’
Said stunt told me this was a band across the genres and across the ages. Looking at the crowd, this was a good range of people who have been in the Goth scene a long time and plenty of youngbloods who will keep it alive for years to come.
Lord of the Lost also mentioned an after party at Slimelight, the primary Goth institution of the UK, so I hope that went well. The Lords brought in the party from Deutschland and nothing at all was lost in their ferocious onslaught of wonder.
Come again soon Lord of the Lost.