About a year ago I wrote about goth and deathrock-type bands in the greater Dallas area (“Gothic Rock and Deathrock in DFW in 2016 – Grave City’s Quick and Dirty Guide,” from Sept., 2016 — that article is here). A few of the bands I wrote about have since broken up (e.g. Ritual Order, Slimy Member), and a few others are on temporary hiatus (Garden of Mary). But some new bands have also arrived. BLOOD BELLS is one of the new ones, and they’re a darned good new one.
I had the privilege of booking BLOOD BELLS to play their first show in Dallas at a collaborative Wardance/King Camel event with Jeffrey Brown at Armoury DE on Friday, September 15. It was a good show. Although Blood Bells are named after the Current 93 song “The Bloodbells Chime,” the Denton duo do not sound like Current 93 or any of the other neofolk and post-industrial bands in Current 93’s orbit.
Instead, Blood Bells play a type muscular trad gothic rock inspired by the classic acts of the genre: the Sisters of Mercy, Red Lorry Yellow Lorry — that whole smoky, 80s Leeds UK sound that has also been explored by current revivalists in bands like Terminal Gods and Golden Apes. Singer Clint’s vocals have a more decidedly Andrew Eldritch sound than was put on display in some of his previous bands, which included Pink Smoke and the Damned cover band Stab Yr Front (damn, that was a fun cover band). Bassist Matt Stewart’s basslines have the classic appeal of Patricia Morrison‘s clean, driving bass on the Sisters of Mercy’s Floodland opus. As singer Clint says below, “I’d say we fall under the deathrock/post-punk umbrella if we had to slap a label on it. I think we’d like to let the listener decide, ultimately.” And with that being said, here is the band themselves, in their own words:
Interview below the cut!