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5 Best Goth Clubs In New York

Day-crawlers and the faint-of-heart need not apply. The underground Goth club scene throbs a couple clicks below-the-radar and doesn't heat up till well past midnight. Darkly-lit venues from the East Village to Alphabet City host Goth events a few nights a month, but open and close at a moment's notice, so double check before you go. Get ready to crawl out of your coffins, don your blackest corsets and creepers and travel to the darkest edges of New York's Gothtown. Whether you're just dipping in a black-laquered toe or looking to saturate yourself in music from bands like The Birthday Massacre, Controlled Bleeding and Loretta's Doll, remember this tip: no posers allowed.
Bowery Poetry Club
(credit: Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

Salvation @ The Bowery Poetry Club
308 Bowery
New York, NY 10003
(212) 614-0505
Price: $8 with flyer, $10 without flyer, Under 21 $10 with or without flyer

Tender-fleshed virgins to the Goth scene will find the not-quite-so-intimidating, monthly Salvation events hosted at BPC to be focused around new and classic industrial and deathrock music. The air's a little musty, but the atmosphere as welcoming as possible when partying with the children of the night. Enjoy the sounds of both recent and classic goth, deathrock, dark dance and electronic body music served up by DJs Patrick and Cyn. Leave your smile at home, but don't forget your ID. Remember to make friends with the bartender just in case you need an alibi.

Related: New York's 5 Best Tattoo Parlors

Nightlife & Music Goth, UC
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Absolution @ UC 87
87 Ludlow St.
New York, NY 10002
(212) 677-1100
Price: $8 with printed flyer or Absolution ID card, $10 at the door

Hosted by DJ's Jason and Xtine, Absolution is the first mega-DJ Gothic/Industrial Scene Night. It's currently held at UC 87, Absolution is a dance party featuring up to 12 DJ's every Friday night. You might get away without an ID card here, but dress code is important. If acts of darkness are your thing, leave your jeans and sneakers at home and go cyber bodice or Goth Lolita. Rumor has it you can smoke at Absolution, but you can't, so put that notion to bed. It's all about the music here and while all are welcome, fetishists might do better at Paddles.

Nightlife & Music Madam Ex
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The Court of Lazarus @ Madame X
94 W. Houston St.
New York, NY 10012
(212) 539-0808

Not for newbies, the hard-core scene at The Court of Lazarus is a cross between ritual gathering, dark performance space and Goth-rhythmed cocktail party. This Vampiric Council is hosted at the red-tinged and lush Madame X lounge. Calling itself New York's original Salon Noir, the Court started as a socializng haven for the dark and delightful, but quickly organized as a full-out Vampiric Court, which supports the Pax Vampyri and upholds the Black Trinity. The Goth community is welcome to show up and listen to acts like The Dresden Dolls and Saints of Pain, but formal Goth attire is strictly required. If you want to enjoy the cheap drinks at Madame's or a dark-cornered convo with Fang Goddess Ra Ubasti, don't even think about forgetting your ID. Photograpy and videography are verboten.

Nightlife & Music Goth, Ottos Shrunken Head
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Dark Water @ Otto's Shrunken Head
538 E. 14th St.
New York, NY 10009
(212) 228-2240

This weekly event at New York's best Tiki bar turns the local scene on its ear, featuring sounds by DJ's Spaz, Victor Auton and Cage 23, plus a surprise guest list of the Goth scene's most popular scratchers The music of choice for dark aficionados at Otto's is Synthpop, Industrial, Goth, with a dash of 80s and New Wave. Otto's has a mega-extensive selection of domestic and imported beers and exotic drinks. This party's been going on a long time; those in the know never miss it.

Nightlife & Music Goth, The Delancey
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Contempt @ The Delancey
168 Delancey St.
New York, NY 10002
(212) 254-9920
Price: $5 with flyer, $7 without

The full-performance space downstairs at The Delancey hosts the not-for-profit club event Contempt for Goths who love music and a great party. Newbies to the scene will appreciate the lack of a dress code and non-pretentious, joyful atmosphere. Contempt has a BYOCD policy and plays requests. Bands like Bootblack and Weep make regular appearances. ID required.

Related: Best Goth Bars in New York

Corey Whelan is a freelance writer in New York. Her work can be found at

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