ABOUT GOTHIC METAL
Gothic Metal is a genre of music that finds itself in the umbrella of goth music. It didn't grow out of gothic rock, but organically grew from death, doom, and death-doom metal artists who were seeking something more emotive, grand, somber, etc, and were particularly interested in a lot of gothic music. Several artists are still people who grew organically into or out of gothic rock, but most of the time all of these bands came from death-doom metal backgrounds. I intend to make a separate page for death-doom despite how similar it is to gothic metal. Gothic Metal has a uniquely emotionally heavy atmosphere most of the time, and lends itself well to dual vocals, medieval or romantic era aesthetics, or themes of religion.
FAVORITE GOTHIC METAL
Draconian - Arcane Rain Fell
What characterizes Draconian is the heavy romantic lyricism that out-romantics all of its contemporaries. They typically do a split clean fem vocals and death metal growl male vocal thing, very popular in both gothic metal and death-doom metal.
Draconian - The Burning Halo
Draconian - The Closed Eyes of Paradise
Draconian - Dark Oceans We Cry
Draconian - Frozen Features
Their most ambitious demo that I keep coming back to because of how big in scale the main song is. The later version of it that would end up on the following album pales in comparison to what's on here.
Draconian - Where Lovers Mourn
The Gathering - Mandylion
Such a beautiful, romantic, and tragic album, encompassing all of the necessary elements of a gothic metal album, and executing them in such a wonderful way. What really makes it is the vocalist, who really has an incredible voice. Every track on this album has an overbearing emotional energy that will crush you if you aren't prepared for it.
The Gathering - Nighttime Birds
How Like A Winter - Beyond My Gray Wake
Katatonia - Discouraged Ones
Lacuna Coil - Comalies
My first favorite gothic metal album. It stuck with me for years and years since I was 17 and I still think of it every week. It's maybe not in my top five anymore, but it will always be the huge nostalgia one, and it's still pretty fantastic.
Lacuna Coil - Unleashed Memories
Moonspell - Irreligious
FULL MOON MADNESS
Moonspell - Wolfheart
My Dying Bride - The Dreadful Hours
My Dying Bride - Songs of Darkness, Words of Light
Novembre - Arte Novecento
Novembre - Dreams d'azur
The Old Dead Tree - Blossom
The Old Dead Tree - The Nameless Disease
The Old Dead Tree - The Perpetual Motion
Paradise Lost - Icon
Paradise Lost - Draconian Times
I was hopelessly obsessed with this album when I first heard it because of how rich of an atmosphere it evokes, much like Tiamat - Wildhoney.. The only thing that may be a dealbreaker to some is that the singer can sometimes sound like Dave Mustaine. Nonetheless, I'm a huge fan of Paradise Lost
Paradise Lost - One Second
Between all of their albums, I think this one is my favorite.
Paradise Lost - Seals the Sense
Rapture - Silent Stage
Rapture - Songs for the Withering
Sirrah - Acme
Another album that's really fantastic with creating atmosphere, but is more on the death doom metal end. It also has a bit of a sense of humor at times, which makes it more fun to listen to in general.
Theatre of Tragedy - Aegis
Theatre of Tragedy - Velvet Darkness They Fear
Tiamat - Gaia
A sampler of songs that were on Wildhoney, but altered a little bit. I throw this on my phone whenever I'm out and about because it has Visionaire, The Ar, and Gaia all within close proximity.
Tiamat - Wildhoney
Another one of those albums that I can never get away from even if I was running at top speed for the rest of my life. Tiamat's best album by a long shot, a massively dense gothic metal experience, evocative of the sunset of a dying age. Very focused on nature and the darkness of man. Makes you think if the designers of Dark Souls ever listened to Tiamat. It's not necessarily something every American can get into because the accent of the singer is very thick. If you can look past that, you'll find an album that embodies the concept of atmosphere.
Tristania - Darkest White
Tristania flexing that they're old and still make good music
Tristania - Widow's Weeds
Type O Negative - Bloody Kisses
Of all the bands on this list, Type O took themselves the least seriously. This is a double edged sword because they kind of just came off as overly worried of their image. Nonetheless, their songs have a lot of humor in them.
Type O Negative - October Rust
Type O Negative - Life Is Killing Me
Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines OST
This game was ultimately my introduction to gothic metal in a big way, and pushed me deeper into rivethead and gothic culture than I already was. It has Tiamat, Ministry, Lacuna Coil, and several other fantastic bands worth listening to. And if you can get your hands on the cut songs, they're all originals and all have a uniquely somber and nostalgic tone to them. Not gothic metal, mind you. The cut songs are more like atmospheric synthy rock with some acoustics.
Virgin Black - Requiem - Fortissimo
Virgin Black - Requiem - Mezzo Forte
Virgin Black - Sombre Romantic