Andrew Eldritch (born Andrew William Harvey Taylor, 15 May 1959, Ely, Cambridgeshire, England) is the strictly (non) gothic vocalist for the (not at all) gothic rock band known as The Sisters of Mercy. They were one of the first bands to be labelled as (non)goth, and produce music that has the power to drive people off cliffs.
Eldritch was inspired mostly by dirgemaster Leonard Cohen who is the real 'godfather of goth', and went on to become well known for his (non) goth musical style, (non) gothic outfits, general (non) gothicness and for being loosely associated with Patricia Morrisson's huge tits.
Eldritch was exchanged for a human baby named Andrew William Harvey Taylor, being replaced instead by a German hob-goblin child named Andrew Eldritch, somewhere in Ely, Cambridgeshire, UK on May 15, 1959.
Eldritch was a 'Different' Kid
This baby hob-goblin was very different from most human babies, but his adoptive parents loved him all the same, in spite of him being born with a monotonous bass-baritone voice, having a strong aversion to daylight, and having these peculiar cravings for fresh blood, muck and crunchy beetles which they found, uniquely, was all that the boy could digest.
Eldritch did not make any friends at school, possibly because he wore black leather all the time and sunglasses which not only concealed his hob-goblin features, but also protected him from the harmful rays of daylight. Other kids also got slightly disturbed when he would randomly munch on tasty bugs in the classroom.
Instead of having schoolfriends, young Eldritch spent almost all of his childhood reading ancient moldy tomes about the occult in high German, Enochian, Japanese, ancient Swedish Runes, Russian, Aztec and Mayan Glyphs, Mesopotamian, Swahili, Chinese, Sumerian and Welsh. He would then perform rituals using time forgotten symbols to various gods of ancient times, often sacrificing goats and other miscellaneous small animals in the process. His goblin name, Eldritch actually means all that is to do with the occult, so it fitted him perfectly.
As well as reading, Eldritch brooded alone in his bedroom, singing along to Leonard Cohen, and spent the evenings hanging out in graveyards, performing rituals to raise the dead and then practising the ancient sacred art loosely known as necrophilia on them. He found that these undead did not mind that he was a deranged hob-goblin, as they had been lonely underground, so it worked out very well on both accounts.
Obsession With Leonard Cohen
But Leonard Cohen soon became a bigger and bigger feature in young Eldritches life, and he discovered that he indeed had great skill in singing the tuneless, depressing dirge that Leonard Cohen was famed for, and he thus sang regularly, driving his adopted parents to psychotherapy.
Eldritch excelled at languages at school, and being a natural polyglot (a hob-goblin racial characteristic), found himself able to decipher archaic German texts about rituals dedicated to Odin, enochian manuscripts, and anything in Welsh, French or Chinese. He also learned to speak fluently in every single other language on Earth including all of the African and Amazonian tribal dialects and the dead languages of ancient civilizations as well as demonic and talking in tongues.A line from a later song of his, "Bury me Deep" (not at all a goth song by the way) alludes to this deep knowledge:
Spoken in tongues,
This skill in languages earned him a place at Oxford university, to study his native German, but being the top English university full of highly educated professors, soon it was revealed from his dining on beetles, that he was actually a hob-goblin, and he had to leave.
So he went to study at Leeds university, also in the UK, to see if they wouldn't notice what species he was there, and studied Chinese; mostly because China is a country known for its freedom of eating.
However, somebody saw him without his sunglasses and that was the end of his studying.
edit The Band
Being a hob-goblin, Eldritch found that only a few people were not scared to talk to him, and he managed to convince some guy in a punk band to take him in as their drummer - this was due to the fact that he could play any funeral march at all on a drum kit, and because the punk scene did not require Leonard Cohen covers at the time.
However, he managed to later find some other guys that were interested in forming an entirely different kind of band in 1979; The Sisters of Mercy - incidently named after a particularly depressing dirge of Leonard Cohen's. Eldritch then invented the drum machine so that he was excused from drumming; and he programmed this machine known as 'doktor avalanche' to play any funeral march that he set the mode for. This instantly meant that the other band members were left with no excuse that they had no drummer, and therefore it meant that he could at last mumble drearily into the mic.
Luckily for Eldritch, kids were bored of punk, and were looking for something quite different, so they started to go to see the Sisters of Mercy, quite possibly because the ironically named band Joy Division had already bridged the gap between punk and dirge, thus making pure dirge acceptable listening. Joy Division had also already been marketed as goth, to differentiate it from punk and were possibly the first band to have been labelled as such, despite their wearing of non-black clothes and sounding more indie.
This all new gloomy sound proved to be popular, but listening to melancholic, doom laden music had the side effects of wearing black, hanging out in graveyards and generally being depressed. These side effects caused by listening to the Sisters of Mercy came to be known as the gothic culture (which also relates to Eldritches German (Gothic) goblin ancestry).
- However, the true roots of goth music are indeed with Leonard Cohen and the black death - see dirge for more details.
edit The goth scene
Other bands soon mushroomed into existance like toxic fungus, bands such as the Cure, Bauhaus, Fields of the Nephilim etc. etc.; and in the early '80s, gothic culture was everywhere. Sisters of Mercy became a popular band and possibly contributed greatly to the death by suicide figures of the 1980s demographic statistics.
Then, in 1985, Eldritch declared war on his guitarist, Wayne Hussey for reasons unknown; but possibly due to Hussey finding out that he was a hob-goblin, and Eldritch began to perform rituals which led to Hussey being tortured by conjoured little demonic gerbils every friday night. Hussey could not stand it anymore and left to create his own band, the Mission, where he discovered that he could sing exactly like Bono. Eldritch and Hussey have not spoken since. The other band members also left, including the guitarist, Gary Marx who Eldritch originally started the band with; but it didn't matter, because Eldritch continued to make miserable dirges, and simply employed a fit female bassist with big tits otherwise known as Patricia Morrisson to replace all of the other band members (with the notable exception of doktor avalanche).
edit Patricia Morrisson's Tits
Once Patricia was in the band, from 1985 onward, sales of Sisters of Mercy's music went up directly in proportion with the amount of men that ogled her cleavage. Very soon even ordinary non gothic people were familiar with their music. She wore medieval wench dresses, Victorian corsets and other kinds of tight fitting dresses (sometimes even pvc) with very low necklines to reveal these huge tits more, and therefore soon, Sisters of Mercy were in the top 10 and even on the famous British chart singles show, Top of the Pops.
Nobody really cared about Eldritch at all really at that time, he was simply there for atmospheric principles; to create the background gothic sound associated with staring at Patricia Morrisson's tits.
But, unfortunately Eldritch fell out with her eventually. Not only had she discovered that he was a hob-goblin, but he had been forgetting to pay her for all that sex that he had been having with her, only giving her enough money to cover her chocolate addiction. So she got very upset, refused to have anymore sex and went back to home to her very rich parents in L.A.
edit Life After Patricia
He knew that Patricia's tits sold the band more than anything that he could ever personally accomplish with it, and because of that factor, he did not make anymore hit singles apart from Temple of Love in 1992, where he substituted Patricia for another scantily clad woman singing bvox.
But after that one final hit, sales of Sisters of Mercy's music plummetted, like a lemming over a cliff edge. And Eldritch had to release 'best of' albums to make any money. He then met up with his childhood idol, Leonard Cohen to discuss the more important matters of dirge, and they spent quite some time brooding together about how they were both miserable and past it.
Sisters of Mercy fell into obscurity thereafter; only to be known for the music they had made 'back in the day'.
edit Andrew is Also Famed for his Blatant Lying
Apart from all of the above evidence which suggests that Eldritch might well be responsible (or at least in conjunction with Cohen) for the spawning of the entire gothic subculture, it appears that he has developed a deep denial concerning everything that he really is (including a hob-goblin).
He publically announces every once in a while that Sisters are not goth, and neither is he. This is, of course a big fat lie, as you will find in any common dictionary under the definition, Goth: Andrew Eldritch.
Why Sisters are not Goth: Evidence
- The way they sound (duh)
- The way they look (particularly Eldritch)
- Most to all of their fans are goths
- SoM are actually worshipped by members of the goth culture as being the original and best goth band
- If any random person is asked to name goth bands, Sisters are always mentioned
- Eldritch has an allergy to sunlight
- Their music videos
- They were one of the original purely goth bands complete with correct dress code
All of this evidence, to ANYONE would strongly suggest that SoM are not only goth, but the very foundations of goth itself. If they are not goth, then either goth does not exist, or Eldritch is a total liar.
The Joy Division Hang Up
Eldritch's blatant lying apparantly originally occured in conjunction with being accused, by the media back in the early days, of ripping off Joy Division who were originally marketed under the label of 'Gothic' (actually it was Cohen they both ripped off, but Cohen agreed with their motives) and then using their style of music to sell his new band, labelling it under the umbrella term 'goth' to attract Joy Division's audience. To try and distract these accusers, he pretends that he and his band are not, and never has been goth (which is such a whale of a lie it isn't even funny), therefore implying that he is not guilty, and that he did not rip off Joy Division at all.This is where things get complex though; Joy Division do not sound like Sisters of Mercy whatsoever. They are far more like indie and not all that goth at all. On that premise, Morrissey could also have been marketed as goth (they are both miserable bastards from Madchester for a start). Also Eldritch wears black and Curtis never did.
Realistically, the only superficial similarity between Eldritch and Curtis is that Ian Curtis had the same vocal type as Andrew Eldritch. But vocal type is not something you can control; simply it is how you sing - and roughly 50% of all males share that same vocal type anyhow - chances are, you're probably one of them (see baritone). Indeed Ian Curtis could well be accused of ripping off Elvis (Love me Tender Vs Love Will Tear us Apart); but crazy media is crazy media - any shitstirring sells; and fans and are overly protective over musicians they like and go mental if they hear of anyone doing anything even remotely, abstractedly similar (particularly if their favorite musician killed himself)...
edit Where is Andrew Now?
Andrew Eldritch occasionally still mumbles depressive dirge into the mic whenever he needs a bit of money. But as he got older, fatter and uglier, he began to look more and more like his true hob-goblin form, so he has taken to hiding out, least the anti-goblin federation discover him and do nasty things to him involving sharp, pointy things.
Eldritch has taken to disguising himself as a chav in recent years for two purposes: Firstly to delude people into beleiving that he isn't, wasn't and can't be goth, and secondly to deter the anti-goblin federation from noticing him.
But yes, he still gets on stage from time to time with whoever he can pay to support him, and his music still has a tendancy to cause spontaneous suicides.