Gothic Beauty – Issue #8 – Review

Gothic Beauty

Issue #8 $5
by Scott Hefflon

Gothic Beauty recently moved to Pornland, OR (home to Suicide Girls, granola-eating hippie/clean-living freaks, and the guy who wrote Fight Club), and the last couple issues have show the mag really coming together. Ultra-slick glossy cover and full-glossy, mostly b&w interior (some color in the center) make this a visual feast. And that’s the point. It’s part Gothic/industrial fashion mag and part music mag, and if that’s not yer bag, quit snickering and go read Punk Planet or some other narrow-minded “we’re an elitist music fanzine” piece of shit. There are plenty of them out there.

Gothic Beauty features amateur Gothic models and photography, so while much of it is kinda stiff and amateurly-shot, it’s very real, very “hey, that looks like that hot chick who works at the coffee shop,” and that’s awesome. The reviews cover Gothic and industrial as well as a bit of the darker end of metal, and the writers are fans, not critic shitheads, and what they lack in precision and, ya know, style, they make up for by being straight-forward and honest. Not a lot of “I’m 16 and have no musical perspective, so I’m just gonna say this CD sucks cuz my mom grounded me and I’m angry,” if anything, they know a lot about the genre(s) and are too polite. Good bands often put out kinda-useless records, and you have to find dozens of ways to phrase that.

The layout is still kinda clunky, but the review section features postage-stamp-sized CD covers for each review (gotta love glossy resolution), and the reviews are nice’n’short. In contrast, there are LOTS or full-page pieces with simply a model sportin’ a cool corset, and the hair, tattoos, and accessories are all part of the look. There are a ton of ads for boutiques and mail order places all over the country, so aside from the ads being sexy, there are a ton of URLs to check out to find out what’s out there. Cuz aside from modifying and “Gothing out” regular clothing, the fashion aspect is openly as important as the music. Hey, at least they’re open about it…
(4110 SE Hawthorne Blvd. PMB #50 Portland, OR 97214)