Written by Kevin Tuxford
On their debut album, the Doors did a cover of “Alabama Song” by Brecht/Weill that also captures that dark spirit of decadence. Anyone who looks it up on the internet will note that the Doors were the first rock band that a critic labelled “gothic.” It had nothing to do with architecture or the sack of Rome. It was that sort of dark, decrepit human ugliness that had been captured in Germany decades before. And let’s face it, Jim Morrison was not a “happy camper.” He had issues. You can listen to “The End,” “People are Strange,” or a dozen other songs and realize that Jim wasn’t a good fit for the “peace and flowers” atmosphere of the sixties.
You can certainly toss in the Velvet Underground, Nico, and Lou Reed with this sort of unpleasant realism. It’s completely valid to point out the precedents they set and the influence they had on the development of post-punk music, but I’m going with Jim and the “gothic” connection for this one.