Top 10 Best Goth Rock Bands

The Top Ten
1 The Cure The Cure are an English post-punk/gothic rock band formed in Crawley, West Sussex, in 1978. The band has experienced several line-up changes, with vocalist, guitarist and principal songwriter Robert Smith being the only constant member.

Gothic music is really about the whole gothic rock, post-punk genre, and I think everyone should listen to this type of music before they start getting into the gothic scene. Sure, Evanescence is inspired by the goth culture, but their sound isn't the traditional sound you think of with bands like The Cure and Siouxsie and the Banshees. I found this a really hard decision (as I'm a massive fan of lots of bands on this page) but I just love listening to The Cure. Sorry, I like a few Evanescence songs, but they're not traditional goth rock.

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

I totally love Evanescence. Their songs are deep and meaningful. They certainly have to be the best goth rock band! And, of course, Amy Lee complements the band further with her amazing vocals that are just out of this world and kind of give you goosebumps. Not to mention her adeptness in playing the piano. Gosh, she sings and plays the piano at the same time effortlessly! I respect her because she isn't like some other female artists who rely more on their sex appeal rather than talent to sell their songs. I'm not saying that all artists are like that, but sadly, nowadays many lack real talent like Amy Lee, and their songs are just meaningless. So now, I listen more to Evanescence and truly enjoy their songs as I love rock, and they sure know how to rock it with those great guitar riffs, impressive drums, and chillingly good vocals! Someday I hope to attend their concert.

3 Bauhaus Bauhaus were an English gothic rock/post-punk band, formed in Northampton, England in 1978. The group consisted of Peter Murphy, Daniel Ash, Kevin Haskins and David J.

One of the most influential and underrated bands ever. That shows true passion and talent, not caring about being super famous and getting tons of media hype, but still making fantastic music. I think it's great how they even influenced non-gothic bands (e.g., My Chemical Romance. Listen to the intro of Bela Lugosi's Dead and Vampires Will Never Hurt You, it's very similar.) Being born in 2001, I didn't really get into '80s stuff, but this band sort of kick-started my interest.

There are a lot of baby bats here. Those who mistakenly think alternative radio rock bands like Evanescence, HIM, Manson, NIN, and so on still have a lot to learn. Wearing black clothes and playing a piano does not make your music goth. These people are only using the term because the media idiotically uses the label to define such acts (and, unfortunately, horrible things like school shootings, etc.). Bauhaus is credited with creating the first true goth song, "Bela Lugosi's Dead". Baby bats should do their research and look into genres such as darkwave, post-punk, deathrock, coldwave, dream pop, industrial, new wave, minimal synth, and neofolk... to name a few. Also, for the record, there is no such thing as emo-goth.

4 The Sisters of Mercy The Sisters of Mercy is a British rock band formed in 1980 in Leeds, England. They are often associated with the gothic rock genre but have explored a variety of musical styles over the years, including post-punk and alternative rock. The band is known for their dark, atmospheric sound and introspective... read more

I totally agree with the previous poster - most of the entries above the Sisters on this list would probably not even exist if it were not for the Sisters. This band pretty much invented modern Goth Rock. Yes, Bauhaus laid the template, and the Cure and the Banshees moulded the idea, but it was the Sisters who became the model for all future Goth Rock bands in terms of their sound and look.

Even with their limited releases, they still epitomise what Goth Rock should be about - not the commercial, oh-so-pretty pretenders who appeal to the Goth-teens of today (judging by those positioned above the Sisters in this list). The Sisters of Mercy are, and will always be, the true Godfathers of Goth. For me, only the mighty Fields of the Nephilim come close.

5 Joy Division Joy Division were an English post-punk band formed in 1976 in Salford, Greater Manchester. Originally named Warsaw, the band consisted of singer Ian Curtis, guitarist and keyboardist Bernard Sumner, bassist Peter Hook, and drummer Stephen Morris.

I'm not Goth, and I hate pretentious elitist people who seem to think only certain people can be into Goth. However, I do think that if you're going to call a band a Goth band, you need to know your stuff. If you're calling Evanescence or HIM Goth, then you certainly do not understand what Goth music is. Goths can, of course, be into any music, but don't call non-Goth music Goth.

Joy Division, The Cure, Bauhaus, Sisters of Mercy, Siouxie and The Banshees, Christian Death, etc., are Goth bands. Do your research. Also, Unknown Pleasures for me is the ultimate Goth album. Joy Division are one of the greatest bands of all time.

6 HIM HIM was a Finnish gothic rock band from Helsinki, Finland. Formed in 1991 by vocalist Ville Valo and bassist Mikko "Mige" Paananen under the name His Infernal Majesty, the band broke up in 1993, before being reformed in 1995 by Valo and guitarist Mikko "Linde" Lindström.

HIM is my favorite band of all time. Ville Valo is definitely my favorite vocalist, and Linde (Lioneye) is my favorite guitarist. I have all kinds of heartagrams painted on my walls and tattooed on me. I remember first listening to Volume 666 and Razorblade Romance. They influenced me enough to go to Finland for Ruisrock to see them live. They have been my favorite band for years and will continue to be so.

If you don't know who HIM is, look up these five songs: Dead Lovers' Lane, Wings of a Butterfly, Funeral of Hearts, Tears on Tape, and In Venere Veritas. You are bound to like at least one of them.

7 Siouxsie & The Banshees Siouxsie and the Banshees were an English rock band, formed in London in 1976 by vocalist Siouxsie Sioux and bass guitarist Steven Severin. They have been widely influential, both over their contemporaries and with later acts.

They're better than Evanescence, in my opinion. Plus, Evanescence is not a goth band. Yes, they have songs that are gothic, but they don't consider themselves goth, and they're more focused on alternative metal. Siouxsie & The Banshees have more goth rock songs than Evanescence.

I fear an even greater indignity has been bestowed upon this most important and influential goth band of all time, aside from the sadly predictable ranking below the decidedly non-goth band, Evanescence, is the unacceptable misspelling of Siouxsie. Shameful.

8 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,... read more

I have been a fan of Nightwish since around 2005. They are, of course, awesome. However, I believe it was an absolute mistake for them to have kicked Tarja out of the band. I mean, that just simply does not make any sense whatsoever! But, aside from this, I can honestly say they are one of the best symphonic metal bands out there today!

If I have to put Nightwish into words, the music and the lyrics are something that created a shadow over my existence. I wish Nightwish will keep 'fantasizing in the dark' and bring all of us to their 'dark fantasy'.

9 Killing Joke Killing Joke are an English rock band formed in October 1978 in Notting Hill, London, England. The original line-up included Jaz Coleman, Paul Ferguson, Geordie Walker and Youth.
10 Christian Death

What the hell is going on here? Has Hot Topic tainted the minds of our youth THIS much? Christian Death may not be the "greatest," I'll leave that to Bauhaus and The Sisters of Mercy, but they belong in the top 5 at the very least. Evanescence? Nightwish? HIM? Marilyn Manson? Don't get me wrong, I like these artists (except for Evanescence, hate them posers), but they have no place here. Christian Death is my favorite though, and they truly are "Goth." I will never come to this site again.

I don't get why Evanescence is number one up there. I like Evanescence, don't get me wrong on that, but they're not a Goth band. Yes, they do have songs that are Gothic, but Evanescence is more of an Alternative Metal band. Hell, even Amy Lee doesn't consider herself Goth.

Christian Death, however, are a DeathRock and a Gothic Rock band. I prefer these guys over Evanescence. I'm just saying.

The Contenders
11 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".

Best goth metal band I've ever heard. Peter Steele's vocals are unmatched, as well as their slower, addicting melodic tone. God, it's beautiful to listen to. I agree with other people here that The Cure and Evanescence are not goth but more rock instead, with a goth image.

Type O Negative should be much higher, if not at the top.

Type O Negative played in the small Thomas Township Hall when Bloody Kisses was only a bootleg CD. It was clear that Peter Steele had unique voice control. I suggested they do a cover of "Cinnamon Girl", which they actually did later. I heard it in my head as a much slower version.

12 Clan of Xymox

This band, ever since the 80s, has made dark goth music. They became fairly electronic in the early to mid-90s, but their majority of music is slow and has a lot of darkness in it. A great example of this is Stranger, or maybe even one of their shorter filler songs like Theme II.

This band should be in the top 10. It has very good songs with great production quality. Pretty much every song has some deep and dark feeling to it, especially songs like Craving and Cry In The Wind. This band does not deserve to be this low.

13 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.

I personally believe that this band's music is both inspirational and electrifying. With both cunning vocals and beautiful melodies, this band should be in the top 5. Nay! The top 3!

Lacuna Coil deserves to be closer to the top 3. Cristina Scabbia is incredible. Her voice is just so unique and beautiful. They are also from Italy!

Apparently, those who wasted their vote on Evanescence have never heard Lacuna Coil. Too bad for them. Lacuna Coil should definitely be way up on the list.

14 Nine Inch Nails Nine Inch Nails is an American industrial rock band, founded in 1988 by Trent Reznor in Cleveland, Ohio.
15 Alien Sex Fiend
16 The Shroud

A list that doesn't have Sisters, Siouxsie, or The Cure at #1 is sure to miss this standout band from the '90s. Every bit as nuanced and striking the perfect emotional tune on all levels, if you have not added The Shroud to your collection of 2nd generation Goth trailblazers, you owe it to yourself to run, not walk, to Amazon (or your local music connection) to at least die having heard this sublime music and the superlative vocals of Lydia Fortner-Walker.

The very first song I heard from The Shroud was "Caged Bird" on a goth compilation CD. Lydia's vocals have spellbound me ever since. It's hard to list my favorite songs in order, but here are my top 5 favorite songs by The Shroud: 1) Prophecy, 2) Collector, 3) Let Go, 4) Pandora, 5) Apology. I'm a Native American Artist, and these songs have created some awesome inspiration for me in my artwork and outlook on life.

I think The Shroud is highly underrated. They're inspirational in both lyrics and music. I love The Shroud and love Lydia.

17 The Birthday Massacre The Birthday Massacre is a Canadian dark wave and synth rock band currently consisting of Chibi (vocals), Rainbow (guitar), Falcore (guitar), Owen (keyboard), Rhim (drums) and Nate Manor (bass), that formed in 1999 (even though the 2016 demo collection "Imagica" dates some tracks back at 1998). Originally... read more

Some of the most deeply, soul-touchingly beautiful music that it has ever been my privilege to enjoy is from The Birthday Massacre. Their music is simply from another realm. Another commenter here was right in believing they are better than Evanescence. I do like some Evanescence now and again, but with repeated listening, they rapidly grate on me. I also find them a bit too depressive, despite their other charms.

The Birthday Massacre, on the other hand, is ever new, enriching, inspiring, and uplifting. Their music is always simply beautiful. It's the perfect accompaniment to a night under the stars. I can't wait for their next album!

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

They're amazing, it's as simple as that. Their musical style is very unique, and the singer, Sharon Den Adel, is very beautiful, and so is her voice. They rock. Their latest album, The Unforgiving, is a bit commercial if you ask me, but still, they remain my second favorite band, right behind Evanescence.

Sharon's voice is angelic and dark all at the same time. She has raised the standard for music and has proved to others that you don't have to be just a goth band or just a metal band, but you could be whatever you wanted to be. I love Within Temptation, and their music is golden.

19 Swans Swans are an American experimental rock band formed in 1982 by singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Michael Gira.
20 Faith and the Muse
21 Alice Cooper Alice Cooper was an American rock band formed in Phoenix, Arizona in 1964. The band consisted of lead singer Vince Furnier, Glen Buxton, Michael Bruce, Dennis Dunaway, and Neal Smith.

This man is considered the king of theatrical rock and brought theatrics into music. He should be number one on this list because he started it all.

22 Fields of the Nephilim

Evanescence, HIM, Nightwish, NIN... All amazing bands. All above Fields of the Nephilim on this list. Not a single one of them is goth. This is supposed to be a list of goth bands. I find this misconception rather strange. Evenescence being at the top of this list is like putting The Who at the top of a 'Top Ten Prog Metal Bands' list. They share some aspects, but one is most certainly not the other. Fields of the Nephilim is one of my favorite goth bands, second only to Bauhaus, and Fields of the Nephilim is also one of my favorite bands of all time. I believe that they deserve a higher spot on this list.

23 The 69 Eyes

A mix of Type-O Negative, Sisters of Mercy, and HIM all wrapped into one tragically beautiful package. Great work, guys.

Quite easily one of the best bands, period. They can sound one way in one song and totally different in another.

At least number 5, their song Dead Girls Are Easy is one of the best songs ever. Back in Blood again, another great Gothic song. Come on, you cannot miss them out of the top 10.

24 The Cult The Cult are a British rock band formed in 1983. Before settling on their current moniker in January 1984, the band performed under the names Southern Death Cult and Death Cult.
25 Tool Tool is an American alternative metal/progressive metal band, that was formed in 1990.

The band is set together between Maynard James Keenan (Vocals), Danny Carey (Drums), Adam Jones (Guitar) and since 1995 Justin Chancellor (Bass).

The band is known for their influences from electronic... read more
8Load More
PSearch List