By Liz Ohanesian


the latter half of the 1990s, I was spooky enough to DJ at a club

called Coven 13. The scene itself was well over a decade old at that

point, but still managed to draw large amounts of suburban teenagers

like myself who were looking for someplace where we could grow giddy

over serious music. By the time I left that world, goth had already

hit the cultural zeitgeist (see SNL's “Goth Talk”) and

felt the backlash following the Columbine murders and other similarly

heinous crimes committed by youngsters. I thought then that goth was

nearing its end. That was eight years ago.


the new millennium, the subculture retreated further underground. The

post-punk revival came and went while largely ignoring the

contributions of this clan. Emo angst and hipster irony dominated the

teen scene. The community itself fractured, with the distinction

between goth and its sister movement, industrial, growing more

pronounced while numerous subgenres sprouted within both realms.

Newbies came to the clubs, but the crowd on the whole grew older,

with the kids who partied all night at eighteen now in their

late-twenties and thirties, balancing careers with their love of the



just a great place to be among people who are creative and take in

the tableaux of everything,” explains Tim Jankowski, a goth

club-goer since moving to Los Angeles in 1993, while sipping on a

drink from Ruin's absinthe bar.


fashion has altered only slightly, with Lolita, cyberpunk and

steampunk styles influencing outfits that remain eccentric and

semi-formal. The music has been updated and, since the legalization

of absinthe, the favored cocktails have changed, but the craving to

exude happiness on the dance floor while a voice through the PA

appears on the verge of tears remains.

Ruin Hollywood, Every Friday @ The Monte Cristo, 3100 Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90038

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