89.5 Skeletal Family – “Promised Land”

The first of more than forty goth records in the top 100, this track was unanimously agreed upon by everyone at Freaky Trigger in some pub around Christmas. Two even sported tattoos of the band.

Skeletal Family were from Keighley in the West Yorkshire delta. They were never a Champions League goth band and most of their other records were tuneless arse. I know this because I have them.

As was the custom, the Skeletals were often asked if they were a goth band “No,” they said, “we write the kind of doomy music and silly bollocks lyrics that pleases us and if any socially inept bangle-arm freaks buy it, it’s a bonus.”

It was around the time of Promised Land that I came out. I asked my parents to switch off the TV, “Look, I’ve got something to tell you.” They shuffled together and smiled, their fingers entwined, “Mum, dad, I think I’m a goth.”

They were fine about it and had suspicions anyway. Their friends’ kids didn’t paint their nails black or listen to Gene Loves Jezebel.

Promised Land is a cracking song. It even dented the danker regions of the charts and the world was theirs for the taking. Well, not the world but a prestigious support slot on the Sex Gang Children tour. It all ended in tears and runny mascara as various band members listened to their own records and left the band in embarrassment. The crimped-up singer went on to form Ghost Dance who, she insisted, were not a goth band.