Under the influence

About the list: The list covers albums that have influenced the "gothic country" genre in one way or another. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, the saying goes. The same is true when it comes to opinions about music influences. Anyway, this is what I hear.



 Cover Album Artist








The Boatman's Call




Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds

Most people would probably choose "The Firstborn Is Dead" or "Henry's Dream" (more gothic) before this album. But the impact of this album can't be overstated. It's also one of the best albums ever. Dark and brooding.








Our Mother the Mountain




Townes Van Zandt

This second album is considered to be one of his greatest recordings and features some of his best known songs. The album didn't sell much, but earned him a reputation as being the "songwriter's songwriter". His music lives on forever.





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Neil Young

This album is on virtually every music list there is. Twenty years after its release the sequel "Harvest Moon" was recorded with many of the musicians who appeared on "Harvest". It's a timeless album and impossible to wear out.





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 Joy Division 

This second and final album from Joy Division was released two months after lead singer Ian Curtis' suicide. The epic album cover (which was decided before Curtis suicide) depicts a tomb. The last song "Decades" made a lasting impression on the genre. 








Songs of Leonard Cohen




Leonard Cohen

This debut album foreshadowed what was to become a musical career spanning over 45 years. The songs have been covered over and over again, but nothing beats the original. The song "Sisters of Mercy" also gave name to a gothic rock band.





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Master of Reality





Black Sabbath

A new generation of musicians have other references than Hank or Johnny. The Victor Mourning sings I heard Black Sabbath in my car, playing on the radio, can’t remember back that far. Is it really that long ago”. It's still country, dark country music.












Bob Dylan


Most people would choose "John Wesley Harding" or "Nashville Skyline" (more countryish) before this album. But this album is far more influential on the genre. Just listen to "One More Cup Of Coffee". It's also one of the best albums ever.





If I Should Fall From Grace With God alt



If I Should Fall From Grace With God




The Pogues

The Celtic influence on the genre should not be neglected. There's a link between Irish folk music and American country music. The folk punk music of The Pogues have also influenced the "gothic country" genre.




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Hallowed Ground




Violent Femmes

Their second album is often regarded as the first "gothic country" album. "Country Death Song" is based on a true story from an 1862 news article about a man who intentionally threw his daughter into a well and then hanged himself in his barn.




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Never Mind the Bollocks, Here's the Sex Pistols




 Sex Pistols

Their first and only studio album. Often regarded as one of the most influential albums of all time. It had a lasting influence on subsequent punk rock groups as well as other musical genres, including the "gothic country" genre.



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