Mar 2017 27

Goth Brooks - Moonshine and MascaraGoth Brooks
Category: Goth / Industrial / Country
Album: Moonshine and Mascara
Stars: 2
Blurb: Celebrating as much as poking fun at country and goth/industrial, Goth Brooks blends the two genres in a manner that should garner a few laughs… but probably not much else.


Goth Brooks… yes, the name conjures up a very specific image, and listening to the band’s Moonshine and Mascara album, there is a certain glee in the fact that it is exactly what you might expect. While country music has never shied away from dark topics the likes of which even the goth/industrial scene has occasionally held an appreciation for (although, in most cases, few are quick to admit it), Goth Brooks isn’t afraid to plant tongues firmly in cheeks as the lyrics throughout the album present a sardonic and satirical take on both genres in a manner this writer has rarely heard since Type O Negative’s “Black No. 1.” Virtually every component of the two styles are presented in equal measure, with programmed beats, vocoders, samples, and synth sequences blending with pedal steel guitars and banjos, all the while topped off by raspy, atonal vocals that border on pastiche. Take a song like “She Thinks My Hearse Is Sexy,” with lyrics like “Save a corpse, ride a goth boy” and “Absinthe makes her clothes fall off” screeched atop a strutting dance beat and samples of Ennio Morricone’s score to The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly… this writer is willing to bet that description alone was enough to make you crack a chuckle. Oh, and then there is “Maria” in which the vocals drenched in a monotone vocoder sing a twisted love song over swells of steel guitar and bouncy electro beats, and while “Freak Out” starts lightly enough, the chorus erupts with samples from the “Time Warp” and the Mortal Kombat techno theme before breaking into a bouncy bit of bluegrass; the effect is disconcerting to say the least. “Hardcore” should certainly find an audience on the dance floor, sampling Britney Spears and “Macarena” alongside The Sisters of Mercy’s “Lucretia, My Reflection” (yes, I’m serious) and with a chorus as catchy as anything by The Gothsicles. Oh, the samples… America’s “Horse With No Name” in “Pale Rider,” John Mellencamp’s “Jack and Diane” in “This Color Don’t Run,” Nancy Sinatra in “Combat Boots,” Shania Twain in “Achy Breaky Twerkin;” credit simply must be given to Goth Brooks for the production values alone. Some of the lyrical references are obvious, but no less humorous, especially with “Lil Bit Cuntry” standing not just as a riff on Donny & Marie but almost as Goth Brooks’ personal statement of “I like my banjos, and I like my industrial. I don’t know if it’s bad or good, but the music moves my soul.” Ultimately, that’s all that can be said of Moonshine and Mascara; at the very least, even if the blend of country and goth/industrial does nothing for you, the band knows how to poke fun at itself, and for that alone, the album is worth a listen and a laugh… but not much else.
Track list:

  1. Motherfuckers from Hell
  2. Dressed In Black
  3. She Thinks My Hearse Is Sexy
  4. Lil Bit Cuntry
  5. Maria
  6. Pale Rider
  7. Fall to Pieces
  8. Freak Out
  9. Hardcore
  10. This Color Don’t Run
  11. Combat Boots
  12. Achy Breaky Twerkin
  13. We Come Together

Goth Brooks
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Ilker Yücel (Ilker81x)

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