Clan of Xymox

Published on March 8th, 2020

Ronny Moorings

Formed in the peaceful and prosperous Netherlands in the dawning ’80s, early dark wave terrors Clan of Xymox have never really gone away. Of the original trio, only frontman Ronny Moorings remains on board, but that hasn’t stopped the Clan from continuing to make shadowy synth-pop/electro dance music that makes goth kids swoon in their caves.

Clan of Xymox celebrated nearly 40 years as a band by releasing “SHE,” a new single, on Valentine’s Day. How better to celebrate a holiday of love than with a band embraced by tormented dark wavers? Goths are romantics in their own way, even if they’re not happy unless they’re also feeling bereft. Valentine’s and Xymox are for them.

Moorings recently told Spectrum Culture that he doesn’t mind being among the last of his cohort still active: “The fact that I actually like what I do and [am] interested in what is going on around me makes me still enthusiastic about music and the scene.”

Early Clan had high-profile champions including the influential BBC disc jockey John Peel and their dark-hearted mates, Dead Can Dance, on the pioneering 4AD indie label. Clan of Xymox and bands of that ilk were staples in the ’80s and ’90s at South Florida venues like Kitchen Club and Squeeze.

Their 1989 album and major-label debut, “Twist of Shadows,” is a goth milestone, and last year got a richly deserved anniversary reissue. “Without this album there would be no way forward at the time,” Moorings told CNET’s “It was an album opening up a whole new dimension for the band.”

Xymox have classified themselves as a rock band, but fit firmly in the dark wave niche that grew up around them. It’s not a bad place to be. The Cure are considered goth, too, yet they still have some pretty sunny tunes to jam out with your mom to on a long car ride.

Heck, it’s entirely possible some of you millennials were conceived on a Saturday night after a Clan of Xymox set. So treat them well, and show respect for your weird parents’ twisted version of Barry White.

Clan of Xymox with the Bellwether Syndicate play 8pm Saturday, March 21 at Respectable Street in West Palm Beach. ~ Tim Moffatt

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