Squeeeeee! A local paper yesterday printed a four-page spread on Elegant Gothic Lolita and one of my fave (and also local-ish) bands RazorBladeKisses! I have sent a desperate text message to friends and family begging them to somehow hunt me down a copy. <3
Ever wondered what your fellow Goths, as well as musicians, designers, and models, have to say about the scene? Well, no, you possibly haven't. But browsing through back issues of my fave dark alternative zines threw up a whole collection of interesting opinions, viewpoints, and descriptions of this spooky scene of ours. So I have put much time and effort (ahem) into compiling these quotes from famous Gothtastic lovelies, as well as various 'normal' Goths (is there such a thing?) from all around the world. Enjoy...
"Gothic culture is creativity unleashed. It is defining yourself using a dark sensibility. Being Goth is celebrating life in new and unexpected ways. It is a way of dressing, an art form, and it is a musical style. As Goths we hug the monster under the bed and say to it 'I love you! You rock!' rather than 'I fear you... I think I wet my PJs.' We celebrate Halloween like it was Xmas, we love loud, dark moody music and we just enjoy the balance between the light and the dark.” - Lauren Jones, from the letters page in Gothic Beauty Magazine.
"I'm intrigued by the freedom and pure creativity designing for Goths comes with. Goths have an eye and appreciation for detail that set a custom item apart from something off the rack.” - Dianna DiNoble, fashion designer, Starkers!.
"There are plenty of Goth bands that are funny... I'm just the only one that is intentionally so...." - Voltaire.
"I get horrified when I hear the term 'classic Goth'. I think you've got to allow people to express themselves in whatever way they want. Some will do this in an exciting and original way and some won't, but it's their choice. The most exciting thing about the Goth scene is the way that it continually re-invents itself and appeals to such a wide spectrum of people.” - Paul Steventon-Marks, The Beautiful Deadly Children.
“Most of the people who call themselves Goth today do not really know where this term comes from and what it stands for.” - Deacon Syth, DJ.
“We were really excited that the show (The Amazing Race) did want to refer to us as 'the Goth team'. We knew the word 'Goth' would be broadcast on TV screens in millions of homes all over America, and felt that this would be really positive.” - Vyxsin.
"I think the Goth community has lost sight of what makes it great. You go to a club and you hear synth pop music. Most of the clothes have become so uniform and off-the-rack boring. The scene as a whole seems to be just a watered-down, middle-ground version of what it could be.” - Matt Riser, publisher, Newgrave magazine.
"Goth is a label, I prefer not to be restricted to labels. However most people who are attracted to this label are looking for a way out of the social norms of society, the hypocrisy, the corruption, the lies, the failure. I am one of them." - Valor, Christian Death.
“Goth is a way of making the fact that you will never fit in work for you.” - 50 ft Queenie, The Goth Bible's Cross Section.
"Goth fashion has become more street-friendly over the years but it would be nice if more people went all out when it came to clothing. I hope Goth fashion becomes more extreme and incorporates more of a dress-up attitude.” - Jenny Wong, fashion designer, Deadly Dichotomy Designs.
"Through the years, the scene has grown and morphed to the point that the term 'Goth' means something different to pretty much anyone you ask. To some it is a style of music and to others a way of dress. Many people who don't consider themselves Goth are a little bit Goth by other people's standards, while others see being Goth as a way of life and proudly celebrate their morbid tendencies.” - Jonathan Williams.
"What makes a Goth in my opinion, is attitude. State of mind. Either you relate to it or not. Trends come and go, but Goth has been there for a while. I know some people despise all newcomers to the scene, calling them poseurs etc, but I'm kind of glad to see young people discover themselves through Goth rather than hip-hop, for example. Even if it's just a phase in their life that lasts for just a few years, I'm sure they'll learn a lot more through Goth than they would through a lot of other subcultures.... Overall I think Goth is not music-centred, that is why Goth is Goth and Gothic music is Gothic music. Goth in its essence is so much more than just music." - Evestus (musician).
"I don't like the misrepresentation of Goth, by that I mean when you go to a supposedly Goth event and all there is on the play list is CHART based music. I don't call that Goth in any way, shape or form; yes there are electronic based Goth bands (Cruxshadows, Scarlet Soho etc.) who do the job properly but there are many acts played in clubs that are not. They aren't even bands, just somebody with a computer churning this stuff out with no knowledge of their craft and, more importantly, with no understanding to the roots of the scene of music that they are involved in.” - Matthew North, All Living Fear.
"Goth has turned into many different fragments and I say fragments because I believe it to be broken but not unfixable. It is very different from how it started out. I really do think it is good to have the heart and roots of Goth alive (although there are many out there who have no idea what this is and where Goth came from, which I do think it would be worth their while finding out) but I also think some people in the scene find it hard to accept that change needs to happen for the scene to grow and expand. Change does not mean a loss of the heart and soul; it simply means refreshment, a breath of life." - Toxic Candy, model.
"To me I think Goth is intelligence; the intelligence to embrace the light and the dark. Although we can be ironically stylish, the heart of Gothic culture is to see beauty in everything no matter how unattractive, horrific or how angelic. When I was a teen, instead of black, I used to dress like a powder blue fairy, even down to my lipstick. I didn't do it for attention but to see others' reactions, the good and the bad. It was fascinating." - Victoria Mazze, The Divine Madness.
“Goth is not the same as it once used to be, but still in places like Whitby and London you can still see it in its full glory. Generally I think the Goth scene is evolving, and that's a positive thing as evolution is necessary for survival.” - Azadeh, RazorBladeKisses.
"Is that still going on? I don't know, I suppose I find it very odd..." - Siouxsie Sioux, when asked about Goth.
“It still amazes me that people don't get it: that Goth is unique. It remains the only musical form that articulates many different areas of your life, of things that interest you, affect you and shape you. And as your interests change there are then new areas of Goth which can also become naturally relevant to that. It is for life, because it always adapts.” - Mick Mercer, author.