music The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists  

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Blending elements of post-punk and alternative rock, the best gothic rock bands are some the best known rock bands, albeit some of the darkest. Their lyrics are widely known for being brooding at best, extremely dark and gloomy at the other end. The best goth rock bands have made a huge impact on the bands that followed them, with many of the bands from the first goth rock period - bands from the UK in the late 1970s/early 1980s - remaining popular well after they first started out. 

So, what are the best gothic rock bands? Any list of goth rock bands has to include the likes of The Cure, Bauhaus, Siouxsie & the Banshees, Sisters of Mercy and Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds. These bands are closely associated with goth rock and with good reason. Their music has transcended goth rock and has landed them on the top of rock critic's best of lists. These goth band also feature a theatrical element in their live shows, which has made some of these bands as some the best bands to see live.

That said, it's up to you to determine what are the best goth bands. If you notice that a goth band isn't on this list and should be, feel free to add them. This list answers the questions "who are the best gothic rock bands of all time?" and "who is the greatest gothic rock musician ever?" If you know enough about the genre, please vote based on the quality of the band's music instead of just voting for the most popular gothic rock bands that you might've heard of. {#nodes}
list ordered by

1
333 56
Joy Division is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
InRustWeTrust added Joy Division Punk rock, Post-punk

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2
532 164
The Cure is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
The Cure New Wave, Gothic rock, Rock music

3
445 142
Bauhaus is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
Bauhaus Gothic rock, Alternative rock, Post-punk

4
369 159
The Sisters of Mercy is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
The Sisters of Mercy Gothic rock, Rock music, Alternative rock

5
314 132
Siouxsie & the Banshees is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
Siouxsie & the Banshees New Wave, Gothic rock, Alternative rock

6
258 106
Cocteau Twins is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
Cocteau Twins Shoegazing, Gothic rock, Ethereal wave

7
125 58
Siouxsie Sioux is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
Siouxsie Sioux New Wave, Gothic rock, Alternative rock

8
168 93
The Cult is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
The Cult Gothic rock, Rock music, Heavy metal

9
160 89
Christian Death is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
Christian Death Horror punk, Gothic rock, Gothic metal

10
172 100
Fields of the Nephilim is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
Fields of the Nephilim Doom metal, Gothic rock, Industrial metal

11
132 73
Peter Murphy is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
Peter Murphy Gothic rock, Experimental music, Alternative rock

12
117 66
Clan of Xymox is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
Clan of Xymox Synthpop, Indie, New Wave

13
141 87
Dead Can Dance is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
Dead Can Dance Neoclassical Dark Wave, Gothic rock, New Age music

14
90 49
The Damned is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
The Damned Gothic rock, Garage rock, Alternative rock

15
124 76
The Mission is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
The Mission New Wave, Gothic rock, Rock music

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16
70 35
Depeche Mode is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
Rosalie Tran added Depeche Mode Synthpop, New Wave, Electronic music

17
112 68
Killing Joke is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
Killing Joke Synthpop, New Wave, Industrial rock

18
119 75
Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds Blues-rock, Gothic rock, Rock music

19
112 71
Robert Smith is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
Robert Smith New Wave, Gothic rock, Pop music

20
89 53
Alien Sex Fiend is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
Alien Sex Fiend Synthpunk, Gothic rock, Electronic music

21
104 68
The Cramps is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
The Cramps Horror punk, New Wave, Punk blues

22
69 41
Love and Rockets is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
Love and Rockets Gothic rock, Alternative rock, College rock

23
87 56
The Birthday Party is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
The Birthday Party Gothic rock, Deathrock, Punk rock

24
82 52
London After Midnight is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
London After Midnight Gothic rock, Rock music, Industrial rock

25
49 26
Xmal Deutschland is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
Xmal Deutschland New Wave, Gothic rock, Ethereal wave

26
89 61
Switchblade Symphony is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
Switchblade Symphony Gothic rock, Trip hop, Rock music

27
91 63
This Mortal Coil is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
This Mortal Coil Gothic rock, Pop music, Ethereal wave

28
79 53
Nosferatu is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
Nosferatu Gothic rock

29
58 36
Virgin Prunes is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
Virgin Prunes Gothic rock, Experimental music, Alternative rock

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30
64 46
Gary Numan is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
Gary Numan Synthpop, New Wave, Rock music

31
52 36
The Creatures is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
The Creatures Gothic rock, Electronic music, Experimental rock

32
71 54
Red Lorry Yellow Lorry is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
Red Lorry Yellow Lorry Gothic rock, Post-punk

33
57 41
Rozz Williams is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
Rozz Williams Dark ambient, Gothic rock, Spoken word

34
129 108
HIM is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
HIM Gothic rock, Rock music, Gothic metal

35
48 33
The Lords of the New Church is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
The Lords of the New Church New Wave, Gothic rock, Psychobilly

36
52 37
The March Violets is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
The March Violets Gothic rock, Pop rock

37
40 26
Nine Inch Nails is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
Rosalie Tran added Nine Inch Nails Dark ambient, Industrial metal, Electronic music

38
62 47
Rosetta Stone is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
Rosetta Stone Gothic rock, Alternative rock, Dark wave

39
45 31
The Frozen Autumn is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
The Frozen Autumn Synthpop, Electro-industrial, Gothic rock

40
46 32
Skeletal Family is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
Skeletal Family Gothic rock, Punk rock

41
30 17
45 Grave is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
45 Grave Horror punk, Gothic rock, Deathrock

42
86 70
The Birthday Massacre is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
The Birthday Massacre Synthpop, New Wave, Industrial rock

43
51 37
Sex Gang Children is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
Sex Gang Children Gothic rock, Dark cabaret, Alternative rock

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44
97 81
Lacrimosa is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
Lacrimosa Gothic rock, Gothic metal, Heavy metal

45
49 36
Inkubus Sukkubus is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
Inkubus Sukkubus Gothic rock, Pagan rock, Hard rock

46
49 37
Faith and the Muse is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
Faith and the Muse Gothic rock, Rock music, Dark wave

47
24 13
Black tape for a blue girl is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
Milo added Black tape for a blue girl Dark ambient, Rock music, Folk music

48
64 52
The Crüxshadows is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
The Crüxshadows Synthpop, Indie, Electro-industrial

49
55 44
Southern Death Cult is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
Southern Death Cult Gothic rock, Post-punk

50
60 49
Tones on Tail is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best Gothic Rock Bands/Artists
Tones on Tail Gothic rock, Neo-psychedelia, Psychedelic music