Nothing did more to further the cause of Alternative Nation-building than 120 Minutes, MTV’s Sunday-night video showcase of non-mainstream acts. For nearly two decades, the program spanned musical eras from ’80s college rock to ’00s indie, with grunge, Britpop, punk, industrial, electronica and more in between. MAGNET raids the vaults to resurrect our 120 favorite and unjustly forgotten videos from the show’s classic era.
#16: Clan Of Xymox “Muscoviet Mosquito”
We never thought of goth as a reaction to the neon and hot-pink ’80s so much as a theatrical/pompous/fun diversion from the unflinchingly plain style and boring rules of punk and hardcore. But let’s leave the thesis paper on goth-rock cultural impact and analysis to a forthcoming Sisters Of Mercy post (wait for it!); here we have Clan Of Xymox, a lesser-known but long-standing goth outfit from the Netherlands. Frontman Ronny Moorings sings like Bauhaus’ Peter Murphy and writes decent hooks; “Muscoviet Mosquito” is from Xymox’s 1985 self-titled debut but got more attention when it appeared on 1987 4AD compilation Lonely Is An Eyesore, a well-timed showcase for the label’s dark, ethereal aesthetic: Dead Can Dance, Cocteau Twins, This Mortal Coil and Wolfgang Press also contributed tracks. The best part about the video for “Muscoviet Mosquito” is that it mostly takes place on a carousel, and thus we are given the awesome gift of seeing a dismal-looking goth malcontent riding a merry-go-round.