march vladness: the tournament of goth

March Vladness, taking place in March 2019, is the latest in our series of yearly March-Madness-style tournaments of essays about songs. Writers & musicians each take on a song from the 64-song field, and we play the tournament off, essay vs essay and song vs song, until we crown a champion. 

Some of the bands that may be included:

Alien Sex Fiend, Bauhaus, The Birthday Party, the Bolshoi, A Certain Ratio, The Chameleons, Christian Death, The Church, Clan of Xymox, Cocteau Twins, Concrete Blonde, The Cramps, Cranes, The Creatures, The Cruxshadows, The Cult (and its earlier iterations: Death Cult and Southern Death Cult), the Cure, Daisy Chainsaw, Dead Can Dance, Depeche Mode, Elysian Fields, Fields of the Nephilim, 45 Grave, The Frozen Autumn, Ghost Dance, The Grinning Plowman, His Name is Alive, Inkubus Sukkubus, Joy Division, Kommunity FK, The Legendary Pink Dots, London After Midnight, Lords of the New Church, Lycia, Marc and the Mambas, March Violets, Mazzy Star, Ministry, Miranda Sex Garden, The Mission UK, Modern English, Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds, Nine Inch Nails, Nosferatu, Peter Murphy, Q Lazzarus, Rosetta Stone, Seraphim Shock, Sex Gang Children, Shriekback, the Shroud, Siouxsie and the Banshees, The Sisterhood, Sisters of Mercy, Specimen, Swans, The Tear Garden, This Mortal Coil, Type O Negative, Virgin Prunes, The Wake, Xmal Deutschland, and more.

Maybe even 16 Horsepower, Jesus and Mary Chain, PIL, Smashing Pumpkins, the Smiths, Talking Heads, or Violent Femmes. How far out from the core of goth do we want to go? Songs will be roughly 1979-1999, with an emphasis on the golden age of goth, 1980-1989, especially in London and LA.

We'll post the song list here in August 2018, but we welcome submissions or pitches for essays and poems relating to goth or any of these bands, or arguing for a band's (or song's) inclusion. We publish original essays and original and reprinted poems on related subjects before the tourney starts, so hit us up with your arguments for Valor-era Christian Death or why the Sisters of Mercy totally sold out after First and Last and Always, or essays about classic goth clubs or experiences or trying to make sense of this brilliant era of music and lifestyle and fashion and ethos.

Have a pitch or a suggestion? Hit us up on twitter or email.

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