What more can be said about The Gothsicles? Since the 2006 release of the NESferatu debut album, the band has been on a steady upward trajectory that has shown no signs of slowing down.
Lyrics that reference all things nerdy – from video games to sci-fi to ’80s cartoons and everything in between – and music that is as maniacally spastic as Brian Graupner’s punklike vocals, The Gothsicles stands in a class all its own. With the release of the EP celebrating the 20 year anniversary of “Konami Code,” what is arguably the band’s best known and most beloved track, Graupner gives ReGen Magazine his own entry in The 6ix List, letting us in on what continues to inspire him to send his fans into spasms of nerdy delight.
The 6ix List
6 favorite artists/bands/musicians
- Kraftwerk – Baffling audionauts from out of time. There’s been a lot written about their influence on modern electronic music, and rightly so I think, but what sometimes gets overlooked is their tracks, even just at face value, are still incredible.
- Devo – More unfathomable electromancy. I mean, put ’em on whatever bullshit ‘One Hit Wonder’ compilation you want, or put a fuckin’ flowerpot on your head for a last minute Halloween costume, but every individual song this band creates is a unique alternate dimension with its own laws of physics. That is insane.
- My Life with the Thrill Kill Kult – Genre-bending ear-worm germs. The sleaze to please!
- Angelspit – Zoog is one of the best human/humaliens I will ever meet in my entire life on this or any other planet. It’s difficult to objectively judge Angelspit’s music with how I feel about him personally, but in a manner as unbiased as possible… dude, Angelspit is amazing. Every miniscule electronic blip is treated and placed like it’s made of threaded gold and the end result still somehow hits like a jackhammer.
- Leæther Strip – Claus Larsen is the Dwayne Johnson of industrial: hard working as all get out and constantly kicking ass.
- Pankow – Weird as shit? Check. Don’t care? Check. Industrial AF? Double check. Holy crap, I love Pankow.
Graupner: If this list kept going, I would also mention Front 242, Project Pitchfork, and Scooter, but you asked that I keep it to six, so I will not do that.
6 favorite albums
- Kraftwerk – Die Mensch·Maschine (1978). This album should not exist. The brutal economy of its length and deceptively simplistic song structure veil a nigh-on scying pool of what electronic pop would become, all from 1978.
- Devo – Greatest Hits (1990). Okay, a greatest hits album, I know, but in addition to being an amazingly well curated collection, Greatest Hits holds tremendous emotional value for me. My buddy Ryan (WORT 89.9 FM’s DJ Koob) and I used to listen to this whole thing three times a day at our summer janitor job. To this day, if I don’t stop what I’m doing and clap along to the first set of claps on ‘That’s Good,’ it throws off my whole thing.
- My Life with the Thrill Kill Kult – Confessions of a Knife (1990). High production slime. Your body basically grows a leather jacket when you listen to this album.
- Hocico – Signos De Abberacion (2002). I still get a chill when the snare drum busts in like the Kool-Aid Man on ‘Untold Blasphemies.’ This whole release is such a monster.
- Pankow – Gisela (1989). So weird, but also laser focused, if that makes sense. And they also sing about dicks. A+!
- Neotek – Brain Over Muscle (1995). This is sort of the unsung harbinger of industrial dance, IMHO; real techno sensibilities with a decided industrial edge. I must have listened to this disc 20,000-million times.
6 inspirations outside of music
- Locality – Nutrients are always absorbed from the surrounding area, right? Anything about driving was written while I was living in Wisconsin; it’s a car-based state. Most of the animal stuff was written while living across the street from the Lincoln Park Zoo in Chicago. I’ll be moving to Boston in May. I’ve never been there in my life, but I’m excited to see what it inspires (which will probably be something Lovecraftian).
- Geek Culture – Video games and superheroes have literally been the most popular things on Earth for the last 10 years, so it feels messed up to categorize them as any type of subculture, but whatever, it’s a descriptor. I mean, I’m going to catch up on Aquaman and this incredible new Mr. Miracle title as soon as I’ve completed this InterView. I still make sure I remember how to beat Shadowgate at least once a year. I see Babylon 5 shit and I light up. That nerd life influence can’t be denied.
- H.F. – GTW
- The Dementia Community – We randomly bamfed into the world of dementia music (as in ‘Dr. Demento’) a while back and quickly found a second home. The largely rap, folk, and parody scene openly embraced the industrial/goth band and that acceptance has always been a warm and fuzzy kind of inspiring.
- Matt Fanale – Not only did he basically save my life, but he’s a fucking genius. I don’t know if he gets enough credit for it.
- Animals – Otters, squids, octopuses, goats, and tamarins. Honorable mentions: caracals and nine-banded armadillos. New contender: go-away-birds. And more. And more and more. They’re all so totally awesome. I don’t know how everyone isn’t just freaking out about animals all the time.
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Gabe Wilkinson (Microwaved)