Chilean vocalist Laura Vargas is no stranger to the symphonic and gothic metal scenes. While she might not have reached “household name” status, she spent eight years as a member of Sacramento, eventually scoring support slots with Theatre of Tragedy and Within Temptation. After relocating to Canada, she formed her own theatrical art/music project The Inferno Doll, whose debut album (‘Dollmination’, 2015) fused gothic metal with striking imagery to tell the tale of demonic possession within a mannquin-like figure. After that somewhat dark release, all seemed to go quiet, but The Inferno Doll eventually re-emerged in 2019 and dropped various hints regarding the continuation of their haunting and twisted musical tales. An EP eventually emerged at the death of 2020 – long overdue, but certainly worth the wait.
Creating a sound they’ve dubbed “Munstercore”, Dickie Devil and the Deviants create music that takes a hefty dose of rockabilly and punk, a decent amount of surf rock and just enough sass to create perfect additions to your Halloween themed playlists. Their 2020 digital release offers a couple of numbers which resurrect fond memories of the early 80s and of classic psychobilly fare, but with a dash of Necromantix toughness and some good pop culture thrown in for good measure.
After three years of brilliant pop frivolity, 1987 has a huge contrast in mood with albums and singles that seem far more thoughtful and downbeat. U2 turned in a career best with ‘The Joshua Tree’; Pink Floyd made a huge comeback with the moody ‘A Momentary Lapse of Reason’ and from a more alternative perspective, Sisters of Mercy and The Jesus & Mary Chain made huge waves with epic goth sounds.
On their debut album ‘Here Now, There Then’, Dool formulated a sound that blended goth, hard rock and a touch of trad metal to create a sound that drew a lot of influence from the early 90s, but in some ways sounded almost timeless. With elements of Killing Joke providing a core influence – especially in some of Job van der Zande’s chosen basslines – it was a record that had a relatively strong musical foundation, even if some of the songs weren’t especially memorable. A cover of ‘Love Like Blood’ flaunted their love of Killing Joke further on an EP in 2019 that, in the band’s own words, saw them growing in confidence.
Lindsay Schoolcraft released her solo album ‘Martyr’ in October 2019. Nominated for a Juno award, the album presents a world of melodic goth metal that should very much appeal to fans of Evanessence, Nightwish and other bands within that musical sphere.