Things We Never Did – a goth dance party for the rest of the weirdos

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Can we hope for a total smoke machine dance party or should we prepare to have our awkward teen years revisited?

It’s the year 2009 and your friend invites you to an ’80’s themed birthday party over Facebook. You are only 23 and can still drink ten Long Island Iced Teas in a row before losing your shirt. You instantly start creaming over the idea of getting to live through the ’80’s because you were only a child when they anti-climaxed into the ’90s. You pull out your best purple paisley silk shirt and matching bangles. You dust of your all-black Chuck Taylors and you get ready to make immaculate mixtapes on a boombox without a working fast-forward button. You roll up your pant legs, you tuck in your shirt, you draw on your eyeliner, you put on your skull rings and you look in the mirror proud of the monstrosity of miss-matching patterns you have birthed. You are ready to go. You fill your backpack with you mixtapes and your Colt 45s and you put on your black wig. Total goth success.

You love dressing up. You love playing the part even more. You are entirely ready to stay in character the whole night and live out the darkest corners of the ’80’s. However, when you get to the party, the lights are on. Cyndi Lauper is telling you what to do, it’s a sea of neon coloured leg-warmers, and nobody is putting Baby in the corner.

Disappointed, you go and drink in the backyard under the deck alone, thinking about all the things you never did. Total goth success.

Ah! But alas, an ’80’s night for the rest of us weirdos. Things We Never Did is Saskatoon’s newest addition to the nightlife underworld. One night filled with a foray of our favourite ’80’s genres.

“The night will focus mostly on goth rock, new wave, and post-punk,” says host Dan Watson. “There will be some later stuff, but nothing past ’89. I’ll be playing everything from the more well-known bands such as Siouxsie And The Banshees and The Cure to lesser known gems like Xmal Deutschland.”

The night itself is named after a song by Sad Lovers & Giants.

“The inspiration behind Things We Never Did was just the need to have a good night for this type of music in Saskatoon,” says Watson. “If you think about it, there’s very few places to go hang out in Saskatoon that don’t play shitty music. After jealously hearing my friends in other cities talk about goth nights they went to, I decided ‘Fuck it, I’ll just do my own!'”

The first go kicks off this Saturday at Vangelis’ and Watson hopes to make it reoccurring event.

“We plan to hold a goth night once every two months. With that frequency hopefully it doesn’t get stale and there’s enough time in between for people to really look forward to it. If it becomes a regular night, there’s lots of opportunities for guest DJs, maybe live bands, all kinds of fun and spooky stuff.”

In the ’80’s you were only five years old and you barely remember it but the whole decade had a relatively dark side to it, especially in regards to it’s music. There was some edgy and freaky shit going on while you watched re-runs of My Secret Identity. Ian Curtis was hanging himself while you were floating around in amniotic fluid. And as Space Shuttle Challenger erupted and exploded in space you were kicking a rock on your way to school. So why do you suppose when most people draw up stereotypes of the ’80’s it is mostly of terrible pop songs headed by synthesizers, crimped hair and neon coloured leg-warmers?

“I guess whatever music is the most popular – usually meaning the shittiest – people remember that stuff,” says Watson. “Funny thing is lots of bands from the ’80s that are considered corny jokes such as Flock Of Seagulls have a really solid body of work outside their well-known hits. The first Flock Of Seagulls album is amazing!”

So, can we hope for a total smoke machine dance party or should we prepare to have our awkward teen years revisited?

“Hopefully both! There will be a smoke machine, and danceability is definitely a huge factor in song choices for the night.”

– Article courtesy of Victoria Allbright
– Featured photo via Flickr user joeshlabotnik – Creative Commons