Greetings to everyone attending Whitby Goth Weekend right now, and hello to everyone travelling down next weekend for Tomorrow’s Ghost Festival. Yes, we’re in the final throes of the great Whitby division, where the two competing events are occurring at separate times.
Next year, they’ll run side-by-side but from now until next Monday, goths will be heading to and leaving from the small seaside town that has become a major nexus of the UK scene.
We’ve covered the split of the Whitby crowd in interminable blog posts before. Suffice to say, the line-up at Tomorrow’s Ghosts continues to be the biggest draw for me, as well as similar expression of interest amongst my friends. Whitby is what you make it, and a good soundtrack and mates about you is a strong foundation of that.
At the main event in Whitby Pavilion, I’m especially excited to take in She Past Away, who have been catapulted to the forefront of the modern goth sound with songs like the darkly beautiful Kasvetli Kutlama. Although the track is now ten years old, it’s still a breath of fresh air (albeit from a mouldering crypt) in a scene far too hung up on venerating the musical pioneers of the early Eighties.
Innovation is the lifeblood of even a necrotic scene like goth and more bands need to be stepping up the line-up to become firm fan favourites. A commendable booking choice.
On the heels of that statement however, I’m obviously dying to see Clan Of Xymox – the Dutch dark wave / synth rockers who have been a goth mainstay since ’81. They’ve played Whitby before and are a flawless act that deliver hypnotic live sets.
Equally intriguing is the chief raconteur of the trad-goth scene, Wayne Hussey himself, who will be headlining Saturday. Rather than travelling solo as we last saw him, or armed with Eighties heavyweights The Mission, he has assembled a hitherto un-encountered group entity known as THE DIVINE:
I will be joined on stage for the evening by a group of musicians that I have never before performed live with: a piano player; violin, cello, and double bass players; and a female backing vocalist, collectively christened by me as The Divine.
Quite what this will mean in terms of music style, I’m not sure – the music of The Mission lends itself most strongly to being performed by a full rock outfit, I feel. But I’d be contradicting myself by challenging this innovation, so let’s see what happens Saturday night! Ensure you’re following the blog and social media for regular updates…
For the most loyal of Eskimos, this weekend will have an opportunity to snap up the rarest and most valuable piece of band memorabilia. Designed and manufactured by expert jewelers W Hamond of Whitby, this one-of-a-kind pendant has been sculpted into the form of The Mission’s debut album, “God’s Own Medicine”.
Formed of sterling silver and iconic Whitby jet, the necklace is on Ebay now and will be auctioned off to the winner by the end of Sunday 3rd November. It’ll be on display throughout the festival, so I’ll be sure to drop by for a gawk…!
Added to that, I’m delighted to say I’ll be attending the newest match between local stalwarts Stokoemotive Football Club, and maruading newcomers F.C. Gothenheim. Ensure you’re following me on The Blogging Goth’s Facebook page as I’ll attempt a live video-stream from the commentary box with long-standing football ‘observer’, Wesley “Death Lynam” Mallin. Expect a booze-fuelled rant of epic proportions that will bear little to no relation to the exploits of near-football taking place before us.
In the intervening time I’ll be floating around the pubs, ambling through markets, making a regular visit to the iconic Abbey, and generally making a nuisance of myself. I’ll also be collecting footage for my YouTube channel which I hope to get off the ground sooner rather than later.
Visiting Whitby is a highlight of my calendar. I’ve been very lucky with access to events, thanks in the most part to The Blogging Goth – so, really, thanks to you the reader for visiting and supporting my work. Keep following me for ever more updates!