Essential New Music: Various Artists’ “Silhouettes And Statues: A Gothic Revolution: 1978-1986”

As far as exercises in futility are concerned, encapsulating a five-disc, 80-plus-song boxed set in 150 words ranks alongside trying to adequately describe the contextual importance of the original U.K. goth scene to those who weren’t there. Luckily, Cherry Red has offered this starting point. Everyone from household names like Joy Division, the Cure, PiL, the Mission and Adam And The Ants on down to those bands only folks with multiple hair crimpers and bottles of black nail polish strewn around their bathrooms would know (Nevilluxury, S-Haters, Sunglasses After Dark, Modern Eon) is included. Given that contributions are limited to a single song from each, it’s the booklet that sheds light on the situation, with an erudite introduction to the genre’s history and comprehensive notes about each of the tracks/bands included. Packaged in hardcover book format with tons of rare, archival photography, Silhouettes And Statues is the perfect companion piece for black-lit nights at home.

Kevin Stewart-Panko