Greatest Gothic Metal Bands


The Top Ten

1 Nightwish Nightwish Nightwish is a symphonic metal band from Kitee, Finland. The band was formed in 1996 by lead songwriter and keyboardist Tuomas Holopainen, guitarist Emppu Vuorinen, and lead singer Tarja Turunen. It's currently formed by Tuomas, Emppu, lead vocalist Floor Jansen, bassist and vocalist Marco Hietala, more.

I guess it is one of the best gothic bands I've ever listened.. Just hope they got to the 1st rank and fulfill our hopes forever..

There is no contest between Nightwish and any other band. The songwriting is superb and the musicians are very talented as well. The singing by any of the 3 lady singers is perfect. Also live they achieve the perfect sound to match the recorded music.

The best band ever..

I liked them before with Tarja and Annette but Floor has made them unbelievable she blends perfectly with Marco

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2 Evanescence Evanescence Evanescence is an American rock band founded in Little Rock, Arkansas in 1995 by singer/pianist Amy Lee and guitarist Ben Moody.

Best Gothic Rock band ever. Amy Lee's voice is simply enchanting...i get goosebumps whenever I listen to her. To be honest, I thought the only gothic rock band was evanescence. And I'm not suprised to know none of those top 10 bands. Guys, If you listen to any song by this exemplary'd fall in love. I seriously adored them by listening to one song. And now, here I am, their most loyal fan. DO THE WORLD GOOD. AND LISTEN TO THEM.NOW.VOTE HIGHER! I'm SHOCKED THIS BAND isn't IN THE TOP TEN.SHAME ON YOU!

Amazing band, with lead singer Amy Lee who has with no doubt the best female vocals in the whole music industry. This is the best gothic band in my opinion, and #4 does not do them justice!

Evanescence is the one who introduced me to the genre. The song lyrics Amy writes are just fantastic. Amy makes the pain look beautiful. She becomes the strength of the listener and her mind just imprints whoever listen to her. Surely, according to me this should be on the top 1 position :))

I'v never forget the feeling of listening to perfect songs from this band
Amy lee is a perfect singer‚̧

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3 Epica Epica Epica is a Dutch symphonic metal band, founded by guitarist and vocalist Mark Jansen after his departure from After Forever.

Epica is my best gothic band ever, she really had great voice and good lyrics of their songs...and of course " AMAZING BEAUTY"

Nightwish, eah... That's good gothic metal in this world, I think. But I like epica better than evanescence and manson.. Manson not scare me

For me it's the #1 by far. I like the others groups listed here (especially Nightwish with Tarja), but Epica surprise me from the first album to the latest.

The best ever

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4 Within Temptation Within Temptation Within Temptation is a Dutch symphonic metal band founded in April 1996 by vocalist Sharon den Adel and guitarist Robert Westerholt.

Of the options given, WT is the best. But that's only because THE BEST band wasn't included - Kamelot. As for Nightwish, used to be a huge fan (before they fired Tarja) but when they replaced Tarja with Annette, it went down hill for me. It just wasn't the same and a lot of the songs felt too poppy. Also I have seen Nightwish, Lacuna Coil, Epica, and WT live at one point or another and none of them (except possibly, possibly Lacuna Coil) compare to Kamelot live.

Within Temptation is best Band Ever. Sharon is Angel.

Within Temptation is not only a band... It's a complete package... The number 1

Cool ban St.Nicholas the great 1

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5 Draconian Draconian

They are truly best gothic metal band. Their beauty and the beat vocal creates dark feeling. Awesome keyboard creates great atmosphere. Gothic metal means sorrow, pain, loss, darkness-all this things is present in their music. Only metal band that makes me cry. It is very sad that lisa had left the band.

As with all music based lists on this site, I dare congratulate Draconian with the fact that they are in fact the highest rated gothic metal band on this list, thus are number one, the bands that are higher in this list are all influenced by the genre, but none of them is for 100% a part of it, although they are popular in the gothic scene, at least where I come from, also am I truly delighted to see 2 bands from my home country are above this band on this list, go Netherlands!

Draconian is the only gothic metal band I see here. CoF are black metal, Him is rock (not even metal), Epica and Nightwish are power metal, and so on.

The Emperor of Gothic/Doom Metal - Angra-Mainyu

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6 Type O Negative Type O Negative Type O Negative was an American gothic/doom metal band formed in Brooklyn, New York City in 1989. Their lyrical emphasis on themes of romance, depression, and death resulted in the nickname "The Drab Four".

There's humor, intelligence, creativity and slamming chord progressions in their music. Their tempo changes and melodic interchanges coupled with the growling, gut-wrenching vocals of Pete Steele are unrivaled. They kick ass with tracks like Profits of Doom and then make you shiver with a track like Love You To Death (an intensely beautiful and powerful song). Don't understand why they aren't in the top 10.

Apparently no one here has heard of the greatest Gothic band since The Cure, seriously Evanescence is above Type O Negative which is a shame if you ask me. This band is like the Metallica of Gothic metal and the Megadeth of Gothic music in general (The Cure brought Goth to the masses so they are number one in my book). - deangelo.gracey.39

Why aren't Type O Negative the top, or at least in the top five? They're amazing, their sound is unique and Peter Steele's vocals in every one of their albums are dark and talented.

The gyn

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7 Tristania

, great band! Specially their first albums! Viveke's voice is just haunting and beutiful! They were one of the first gothic metal band's to stand out! Every time I listen to songs like The Ravens, And My Lost Lenore. Just takes me to another world, and feel another atmosphere. Even though that people that played important role in the band like, Mortem And Vibeke left. They still figured out ways to keep their spirit, I was impressed with Illumination even though mortem haded already left. And the new singer its not a soprano but she is doing a very good job, I loved rubicon and I can allways feel their spirit, Tristania Forever!

Vibeke Stene is one of the greatest female singers ever. Compositions are brilliant. They are so complex and various. All songs have specific dark, sometimes even creepy atmopshere. Whole band are great musicians and their playing technic is faultless. Of course, bands which are above are great too but they aren't gothic metal at all.

I like tristania and vibeke stene

Vibeke Stene's voice + Pete Johansen's violin = The Perfect Match - Angra-Mainyu

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8 Lacuna Coil Lacuna Coil Lacuna Coil is an Italian metal band from Milan. Since their formation in 1994, the group has had two name changes, being previously known as Sleep of Right and Ethereal.

Christina is a more Genuine Rocker and not some mindless Babe in Black. The band is truly one of the pioneers that I can't live without. Andre was always a great vocal Growler and better, but he Really has stepped it up and grown his vocals so very well that he now has more of an up front and often lead vocalization ie: Delirium album

Lacuna Coil is really awesome! Andrea and Christina sound great!

All song is the best ever lacuna coil love you

I can't live without lacuna

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9 Cradle of Filth Cradle of Filth Cradle of Filth are a British extreme metal band that formed in Suffolk in 1991. The band's musical style evolved from black metal to a cleaner and more "produced" amalgam of gothic metal, symphonic black metal and other extreme metal styles.

Wow. OK, this is coming from a Goth. Not your emo wannabe who stares at the floor all day thinking about death, but a Goth in the actual sense of the word. I know Goth music. I mean, I know Goth music probably better than anyone within 500 miles of me. And none of these bands are remotely Goth, save a couple. Type O Negative was Goth for Bloody Kisses, and that was a real landmark in the genre. I voted for Cradle of Filth just because I like them the best, and they have a few Romantic, morbid themes. They really aren't Goth though... As for Evanescence though... Get over it you little girls, you find me one true "Goth" (not emo, mind you) who actually considers them Goth and we will have something else to talk about. Goth music is dead, and has been dead since the late 80's. There may be a few bands that spring up now and then, but near all the bands existed in the 80's. Try out Bauhaus and Christian Death for a start and stop calling any band that dresses in black ...more

I completely agree. As a goth myself I have came to realize that goth music is dying. I wish more people would listen to Bauhaus or alien sex fiend or hell even siouxsie and the banshees - SatansPrincess666

The Best gothic metal band ever! if you heard Hallowed Be Thy, Name, Nymphetamine, or Her Ghost In the Fog, they are the best songs of cradle of filth, Amazing band, cradle have a great voice, they are the best, and the guitar is amazing!

What? The only bands on this list that are gothic are cradle of filth and nightwish! Dimmu borgir is satanic black metal, and marilyn manson is industrial pop punk, damn you people are stupid! - shelbyjordathonjones

Marilyn Manson definitely isn't gothic metal, but where are you getting the idea that he is pop punk from lol, he's industrial rock. - username4122

Definitely one of the best gothic metal bands of all time. Beautiful, emotional and powerful music. I would have chosen Seraph in Travail too, but... alas, nobody knows they exist.

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10 Theatre of Tragedy

This is true gothic and deserves to be on top. Great numbers like a distance there is, a rose for the dead, fragment, hollow hearted-heart departed..

Their first three albums are superb! Great band in general (aside from the electro pop period). I can't believe bands like Nightwish, Epica and After Forever are on this list! I love all those bands, but they are symphonic, not gothic. When will people stop calling every female fronted band gothic?

This is the only true Gothic Metal band in the top 10. don't get me wrong, I love bands like Nightwish and Epica but Gothic they are not. Theatre of Tragedy and Saviour Machine are the best Gothic Metal bands out there.

The best and the unique gothic metal band on the earth. they played pure gothic metal. the female voices of other bands above mentioned tends to be more high and aggressive and so, for me, they did not play ghotic metal but other genres with some dark atmospheres. In this genre the female voice must to be angelic and ethereal and this is very important,like in T.O.T. theatre of tragey is the only one gothic metal band

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The Contenders

11 Delain

Meet them this year at a within temptation concert. But they where better! Went back for their own concert a few months later, it was absolutely great! Best band of this moment! So much energy playing great songs!

This band perfected symphonic gothic metal. It should be number one

I love 'em they are the legends" - Ananya

How can delain don't be nr.1? Or at least on the top 1!

12 After Forever

After Forever - great Gothic metal band with female vocals, probably the best in the whole metal scene. Oh, incomparable Floor Jansen!.. Especially beautiful in the first two albums - Prison of Desire and Decipher. And indeed all art - gorgeous!

I only discovered this band recently, I love doom metal, and I love classical/operatic music, and they combined the two! BRILLIANT!

I love it, the best

13 Lacrimosa

Lacrimosa, their songs, dreams, taste and their Gothic music atmosphere are respectful, prideful, Masterpiece and best in the world.

Lacrimosa really stands out. The band has its own sound, and its own character. One of the examples of (broadly) popular music that is very much close to real art.

Artistic Gothic music as a Masterpiece that never can not be described. No Gothic bands could be compared with Lacrimosa.

This is a list. Why isn't Lacrimosa on top 10?! God, and I have neither seen Paradise Lost nor My Dying Bride yet. Really? what!

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14 Sirenia

Until now I have never listened to a band which was even close to Sirenia's songs. I've never heard even such a song.

I just wish that they was in every radio station...

Sirenia is really an amazing gothic metal band.

I believe that might be more famous.

I think that Nightwish have not better songs to sirenia.

Sirenia one from the best gothic metal bands why nightwish and epica, Evanescence and Within Temptation considered?

Brother in law with tristania... Best of best...

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15 Paradise Lost Paradise Lost Paradise Lost are a gothic metal band that formed in 1988 in Halifax, England and are considered by some to be one of the pioneers of the death/doom genre and of the gothic metal genre.

The godfathers of the genre and still very good. They should be way up the list. Marilyn Manson is not gothic metal, something more like industrial! Neither is Nightwish, they are symphonic power metal.

Still the best band in the world. Conquerors of all genres (even the not very good ones), now they're back to their gloomy, growling best. The Plague Within is nothing short of being a sensational return to their roots and for any other band to be considered above these gothic, doomy maestros is a travesty. Pioneers.

These guys pretty much created this genre with their second album "Gothic". 15 albums and recently got back to their best ever sound.

So... The inventors of the WHOLE genre, the creators of MASTERPIECES like GOTHIC, ICON, DRACONIAN TIMES, ONE SECOND and SYMBOL OF LIFE that mastered this genre in a vast amount of variations that the majority of pack just followed.are ranked at #15? And worst off all: are surpassed by acts like Lacrimosa? Sirenia? Theater of Thragedy? DELAIN? AFTER FOREVER? TRISTANIA? LACUNA COIL? DRACONIAN? Are these cats kidding me? And C.O.F., Epica and W.T. aren¬'t even near Goth Metal. But the worst off it all: pop drag former MTV blockbusters EVANESCENCE topping the shadow kings? Is everybody insane? I know opinions are just opinions, but come on! The only goth metal influenced band I see in the top 20 worthy of being mentioned in the same sentence as Paradise Lost is Type O Negative. Oh man... after seeing this list I really fear for the future of mankind :P

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16 HIM HIM HIM is a rock band from Helsinki, Finland. The band was formed in 1992 by vocalist Ville Valo, and bassist Mikko "Migé" Paananen, under the name His Infernal Majesty.

What's better than putting up a mix of 70's Sabbath vibe, 80's pop hooks and the dark aesthetic of Type O Negative? All this and emphasizing on love rather than hate, which is something that seems to get rarer and rarer in the world of Rock and Metal.

HIM were only Gothic Metal with their first album, 'Greatest Lovesongs Vol. 666' which I believe is an extraordinary album, one of their best. They are now considered rock though.

HIM best gothic metal band with greatest vocalist Ville Valo

Its poetic, its beautiful, its heavy, its soft, IT IS LOVE METAL. HIM created their own style of music.
In my opinion they're not gothic and have nothing to do on this list, but every list they appear on, they should be number one.
Ville's voice, Linde's guitar, Mige' base' Burton's keybord and Gas' drums comes together perfect in this art we call Love Metal.
They will be missed. I've lost a part of myself as they have now anounced the end of HIM.
HIM forever

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17 The Sins of Thy Beloved

Watch their live show on YouTube. Some of the most beautiful music you will ever hear. Melodic and very atmospheric with droning low frequency guitar and keyboard. Anita's performance is hypnotic. Sins of thy Beloved deserves a much higher spot.

Please Listen to The sins of thy Beloved and think about beauty in the dark - Angra-Mainyu

18 Marilyn Manson Marilyn Manson Marilyn Manson is an American rock band from Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Formed in 1989 by frontman Marilyn Manson and Daisy Berkowitz, the group was originally named Marilyn Manson & the Spooky Kids with their theatrical performances gathering a local cult following in the early 1990s. more.

All the emotion MM puts into his amazing songs just blows my mind. Whenever I hear his voice I feel free - like a bird. He saved from the dark corners of my soul. Anyway, he's awesome.

Not exactly gothic metal but he's a goth and I love him so... I'll vote him to

This band is just great

This band IS a metal band, they aren't Goth though. They are whats called Industrial Metal. : I

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19 Tiamat

So dark and sensual.

While Wildhoney, a masterpiece is well known, there are very less known masterpieces too.

What, Tiamat nr 23? Such a great band, deserve to be in top 3. Listen to Wildhoney, a masterpiece..

Wildhoney... alone is enoughto make tiamat number 1

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20 Moonspell Moonspell Moonspell is a Portuguese gothic metal band. Formed in 1992, the group released their first EP Under the Moonspell in 1994, a year before the release of their first album Wolfheart.

I love many bands in here, like Evanescence, Nightwish, and I am adore Within Temptation (specially in their first album, which is pure gothic and doom metal mixed with symphonic metal). I also Love Tiamat But Moonspell simply feels the most gothic. It's origin in the late 80's/early 90's makes it one of the oldest gothic metal bands in the world. They were never afraid of showing experimentalism and showing their roots and influences. They appear quite frequently in top gothic bands/gothic albums lists, and not without reason. In fact, simply, their one of the darkest bands without even crossing into black metal territory (exclude Wolfheart and Under the Moonspell EP for a second).

What the heck? Most of the bands here aren't even Gothic Metal Bands! Epica, Nightwish, Lacuna Coil are all Symphonic Metal! Moonspell are the best representatives here of the genre in question! MOONSPELL ROCK!

I agree, Moonspell is (next to The Vision Bleak) the most Gothic metal band on this list

Moonspell are simply awesome, his musis penetrates into a tunel of many many moods of metal, progressive and experimental, heavy and loud, sofisticated and raw, moonspell is an special loved band in mexico, like others bands, but riveiro and mexico are deeply united,mephisto a master piece, log live moonspell m/,

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21 Katatonia Katatonia Katatonia is a Swedish metal band formed in Stockholm in 1991 by Jonas Renkse and Anders Nyström. The band has released nine studio albums spanning the course of three decades, and their tenth studio album, The Fall of Hearts was released on May 20, 2016.

And what exactly is "Katatonia" doing here at 37th position? Katatonia is one of the best metal banda out there. Their songs such as "unfurl" and "for my demons" are a pieces of true art!

Love Katatonia but it isn't really gothic metal. It's it's own genre, it went from death-doom to alternative doom, but has never been gothic.

Once of the best bands in the world, but is strange and no have a only musical genre defined.

22 Leaves' Eyes Leaves' Eyes Leaves' Eyes is a German-Norwegian symphonic metal band from Stavanger, Norway and Ludwigsburg, Germany.

I cannot understand why this band hasn't appeared before! One of the best bands in the gothic panorama, much more authentic than Manson or Evanescence. Liv Kristin: the haunting voice from the early and greatest years of Theatre of Tragedy. Thumbs up for them, please!

They are just wonderful!

23 Xandria Xandria Xandria is a German symphonic metal band, founded by Marco Heubaum in 1997. The band's music combines elements of symphonic metal with light electronic elements.

Very good band! Deserves to be among the first places!

Xandria with Manuela Kraller is awesome!

24 Celtic Frost Celtic Frost Celtic Frost was a Swiss extreme metal band from Z√ľrich. They are known for their heavy influence on extreme metal genres.
25 Charon

Charon is a GREAT band few people listen to. If you like Paradise Lost and Lacuna Coil, you'll love them. They are real good. A true Gothic metal band. They aren't posers like evanescence, epica and marilyn manson... -. -

Great skill, meaningful lyrics and catchy melodies. Amazing band, great motivational music.

26 Deathstars

I don't listen Gothic much but I did listen deathstars ad evanessence so I think death Star actually deserves to be number 1.

Combining all the classicness of past goth greats and creating their own bundle of joy

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27 Anathema

Without Anathema, Paradise Lost and My dying bride we won't be here speaking about gothic metal: listen to "The Silent Enigma", "Alternative 4" or "Eternity" albums... Great sounds and atmospheres!

28 Theatres des Vampires

ACTUAL Gothic Metal. Not your whiny hot topic crap (Evanescence and Nightwish, I'm looking at you).

29 Motionless In White Motionless In White Motionless in White, often abbreviated MIW, is an American metalcore band from Scranton, Pennsylvania.

Probably the best modern goth metal band ever. They mix a deathcore-driven angry sound with gothic themes and amazing melodic music. These guys aren't metalcore, they're the definition of modern gothic metal and truly deserve the top spot at this list.

I really like how they've stepped away from the Metalcore scene (thank god). I know a lot of people criticize their newer stuff, but it's definitely better than their old stuff. They've finally found a genre that suits them and, personally, I love it.

There first stuff was utter crap. The Whorrer sounded like pubescent boys on their man-period. But take into account MIW's newer stuff- Specifically Infamous and Reincarnate. Off of Infamous, America is definitely not super heavy- but still an insane track. And compare Reincarnate, City Lights, and Immaculate Misconception- they're all completely different but still sound original and incredible. They're all amazingly talented. Motionless In White IS the definition of Gothic Metal. - StainedGlassEyes

I like motionless in white - SatansPrincess666

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30 Trail of Tears
31 Apocalyptica Apocalyptica Apocalyptica is a Finnish metal band from Helsinki, Finland formed in 1993. The band is composed of classically trained cellists Eicca Toppinen, Paavo Lötjönen, and Perttu Kivilaakso and drummer Mikko Sirén.
32 The 69 Eyes

Great songs like "gothic girl" and a couple more. - SatansPrincess666

I just love their recent works

33 Darkseed

Great riffs, great solo, great music, great VOCAL, great lyrics,
Everyone can make contact with their song, even not metalheads
Darkseed is only band in it's own genre

34 Kamelot Kamelot Kamelot is an American power metal band from Tampa, Florida, formed by Thomas Youngblood and Richard Warner in 1991. The Norwegian vocalist Roy Khan joined for the album Siége Perilous, and shared songwriting credit with Youngblood until his departure in April 2011. On June 22, 2012, Youngblood announced more.

Kamelot - Most awesome band ever, hands down. The composition is exquisite, the execution is perfect both in studio and live, and the whole band really contributes in a meaningful way. Just listen to "Torn" from their new CD, Silverthorn, and tell me they aren't incredible.

KAMELOT IS AWESOME! I don't know how I would live without this band, its literally given me a Reason To Live "that's Ayreon, yeah but the singer Tommy was singing that. So I can say that?! Yep ok thanks"

35 Katra
36 My Dying Bride My Dying Bride My Dying Bride are an English doom metal band formed in Bradford, England in 1990. To date, My Dying Bride have released twelve full-length studio albums, three EPs, one demo, one box set, four compilation albums, one live album, and one live CD/DVD release.

Amazingly haunting, provokes the same feeling you get if your bride was dying, but also arouses Tolkien type imagery as well

Come on... I mean for cereal My Dying Bride should be top 10 AT LEAST!

Dimmu Borgir isn't goth. Nightwish isn't goth. My dying bride is most certainly goth

Gothic darkness approaching epic

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37 Lake of Tears

There's just something overwhelmingly true, natural and genuine in their minimalistic yet perfect pieces. They don't sound like they're trying too hard, their music is simple and beautiful. Also, seemingly sad and mournful music hides some sort of joy and happiness. If I was to describe what I feel when listening to them in one word, it would definitely be,peace".

38 Mortal Love

Awesome goth metal band one of the best I have ever heard along with deathstars oh anthema is good but not goth metal

Manson (n)! Sucks!

39 The Gathering

I don't consider them "Goth" but a great band nonetheless.

40 Amorphis Amorphis Amorphis is a Finnish metal band formed in 1990. Initially, the band was a death metal act, but on later albums they have evolved into playing other genres, such as folk metal and progressive metal.
41 Macbeth

Great fusion of different style of metal! Andreas has a great voice

I actually really like macbeth - SatansPrincess666

42 Unsun
43 Dimmu Borgir Dimmu Borgir Dimmu Borgir is a Norwegian symphonic black metal band from Oslo, Norway, formed in 1993. The name is derived from Dimmuborgir, a volcanic formation in Iceland, the name of which means "dark cities" or "dark castles/fortresses" in Icelandic, Faroese and Old Norse.

Last time I checked Dimmu Borgir was a Symphonic Metal band. They used to be Black Metal however now they only drag influence's from the genre. They are a good band, but they are not gothic metal.

Not gothic. But I do like some of their songs - SatansPrincess666

They are not gothic metal and specially they are absolutely nothing close to black metal or symphonic black metal, never were and will never be, they are just commercial, watered down and overproduced hot topic mallgoth for 11 year old wannabe-goth angsty obese kids with acne-covered faces who just want to piss their parents off.

44 Lacrimas Profundere

My release in pain. enough said. I don't even really listen to Gothic metal but this song I still found extremely intriguing. Edgar Allen Poe

Their style has gone from doom roots to a more mainstream gothic style but it's great all the way through. - dragonzrmetal

Maybe Gothic in a general sense but many cross-over fans I'm sure

45 Sentenced

Real finish goth metal sound and lyrics

46 Dark the Suns
47 Autumn
48 Opeth Opeth Opeth is a Swedish progressive death metal band from Stockholm, formed in 1990 by David Isberg, who invited Mikael Akerfeldt into the band as a bassist. Isberg ended up leaving the band, which lead to Mikael becoming the band's vocalist, guitarist, principal songwriter, and driving force. Along with more.

Why aren't they on here? Please vote for the most talented band of all time guys! Opeth's vocals and lyrics have a defined gothic vibe still they have much better song composer than most of the bands on here

49 The Sisters of Mercy

To the person who just called The Sisters of Mercy emo... I hope you're deliberately trying piss people off, otherwise you're one of the most idiotic poseurs I've ever came across.

This is gothic band

The sisters of mercy is THE gothic band. The real gothfathers. Listen to lucretia my reflection and you'll know what I'm talking about...


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50 Vampires Everywhere!

This band is awesome, really love their cover of "rape me"

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