Slap on your darkest shade of lipstick — this upcoming Sunday, May 22, is "World Goth Day."  First began in 2009 by British DJs Cruel Britannia and Martin Oldgoth, this holiday celebrates the dark post-punk music and vampiric fashion sensibilities that make "goth" what it is. Also, black. A lot of black. Possibly also some pink if you’ve goth-leveled up enough, but mostly black.

A lot of us here at Team Revelist had our own “goth phase” as preteens, just as we were learning about the injustices of the world and realizing that listening to industrial-sounding guitars could be an incredibly cathartic experience. (My own phase was severely dampened by my mother’s insistence that I could only own one black t-shirt at a time.) 

And sure, we could fill up a playlist full of ~cool~ goth bands like Bauhaus or Sisters of Mercy — but that doesn’t feel entirely true to the spirit of our embarrassing former selves, the one who actually felt those intense feelings of melancholy and social pressure for the first time and didn’t know how to react with anything other than burned CDs full of Napster-downloaded sadness.

photo: Warner Bros.
So, instead we’re gonna share with you the tracks we listened to over and over again as disaffected youths. Some of them might not be considered goth by the purists, who would certainly call us out as the "Hot Topic posers” and “scene kids" we probably were. But if you feel like taking yourself back to a time somewhere between the mid ‘90s and mid ‘00s, where nobody understood your Pain and Anguish, then buckle your many bullet-adorned belts and then your seatbelt and join us on an angst journey!

The full Spotify playlist is all the way down the page, but of course we'd be remiss if we didn't share some of our own personal tales of suffering — especially from from senior beauty/fashion editor Alle Connell, who is our resident goth queen. Let's dive in, shall we?

Alle, "Plainsong" by The Cure

"Disintegration" is the best album of all time, and I love every song on it like it's a tiny goth baby covered in black diamonds. If I ABSOLUTELY HAD TO PICK one song off of it to include, I'd pick "Plainsong." It's slow and moody and totally lush with evocative lyrics — I feel like I get something new of it every time I hear it. It's the perfect intro to the perfect album, and also happens to be great for making out to. Just saying, goths need love, too.

Victoria, "Going Under" by Evanescence

"Fallen" was one of the first albums I ever bought with my own money and I knew every single song backwards and forwards. This was definitely my favorite song on the album, partially because Amy Lee has a near-ridiculous vocal range and partially because the call and response in the chorus was incredibly catchy, but mostly because I’m a sucker for songs about feeling overwhelmed by something. 

Lauren, “Asleep” by the Smiths

It was mentioned in "The Perks of Being a Wallflower" and I fell deeply in love with it. I was completely obsessed with hearing it and every time I did I sort of felt like I was having my own "infinite" moment.

Alle, "Spellbound" by Siouxie and the Banshees

Siouxie is a goth beauty icon with — in my opinion — a criminally underrated voice. I banged this song HARD in about ninth grade while reading Anne Rice vampire novels, and I still feel like this a great new-wave-meets-goth track: upbeat and dancey, with totally spooooooky lyrics. Love u, Siouxie.

Liv, "I'm Not Okay (I Promise)" by My Chemical Romance

I blasted this on the boombox in my room until I got my boombox privileges revoked because my music was too loud. But honestly, what did my parents THINK was going to happen when they took my bedroom door off its hinges? That was their one shield from my angst. Dummies.


Christina, “Closer” by Nine Inch Nails

I drove in a thunderstorm down Route 208 in New Jersey with "Closer" by Nine Inch Nails blasting, and my friend and I drove in silence 'til it was over, and when we pulled up in her driveway she said, "That will be my wedding song," very earnestly.

Alle, "Love Will Tear Us Apart" by Joy Division

This album is 100% a masterpiece, I will hear nothing against it — but this song in particular I listened to on repeat for WEEKS following a really bad breakup in college. I cried into my pillow and wondered whyyyyyyy this idiot boy didn't looooooove me, completely oblivious to the fact that it was because he was human garbage. Anyway, this song — and the Postal Service's album, which is a whole other story — was the soundtrack to one of the moodiest times in my life.

Shaunna, “Freak on a Leash” by Korn

I used to actually vote for “Freak on a Leash” for TRL in middle school. I’d also listen to it in my room — a CD my mother PROBABLY STILL DOESN’T KNOW I PURCHASED — super loud on my Walkman, and revel in amazing lyrics like “A cheap fuck for me to lay.” Oh, pre-feminism existence.

Alle, "A Gothic Romance" by Cradle Of Filth

Because I am secretly (ok not actually secretly) Richmond from "The IT Crowd."

Feeling goth yet? Check out the whole playlist: