Bauhaus. Joy Division. Sisters Of Mercy.
For three decades now, Goth rock has proven to be some of the most compelling, (tell-tale) heart-pumping music around. So any band whose members initially met at a San Francisco Gothic nightclub is bound to prove interesting, right?
So a doff of the steampunk top hat to vocalist Jeff Wagner and drummer Patrick Crawford, who first bumped into each other at a local funereal gathering called Death Rock Booty Call, before comparing mythologies and deciding to form The Tunnel.
They play The City’s Elbo Room next Monday, backing their sophomore “Fathoms Deep” record. And yes, they do have a human skull featured prominently in their spectral artwork.
Wagner hailed from the creepy theater group Circus Proboscis, and he and Crawford shared a love of B-movies and The Birthday Party when they launched The Tunnel as a bassless duo, before adding bassist/keyboardist Sam Black (of Guilty Party/If Ever renown) three years later. And what they’ve arrived at — on “Fathoms” processionals like “Strange Haven” and “The Beast-Catcher” — is a crypt-creaky Gothic blues sort of sound, less Nick Cave and more early, R&B-sloppy Rolling Stones (Wagner’s voice has some decidedly Jagger-esque qualities). A
nd if you miss The Tunnel this time around, rest comfortably in your casket — they’ll be playing more SF dates this summer.