Cliff and Ivy, Alaska's only goth band
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Cliff and Ivy, Alaska's only goth band

Anchorage, Alaska, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2012 | SELF

Anchorage, Alaska, United States | SELF
Established on Jan, 2012
Duo Alternative Gothic

Calendar

Jun
22
Cliff and Ivy, Alaska's only goth band @ Mad Myrna's

Anchorage, Alaska, United States

Anchorage, Alaska, United States

Jun
23
Cliff and Ivy, Alaska's only goth band @ Alaska Hempfest

copper center, Alaska, United States

copper center, Alaska, United States

Aug
18
Cliff and Ivy, Alaska's only goth band @ Austin Downtown Hilton

Austin, Texas, United States

Austin, Texas, United States

Dec
09
Cliff and Ivy, Alaska's only goth band @ Church of Love

Anchorage, Alaska, United States

Anchorage, Alaska, United States

Nov
11
Cliff and Ivy, Alaska's only goth band @ Triangle

Williamsburg, Virginia, United States

Williamsburg, Virginia, United States

Nov
10
Cliff and Ivy, Alaska's only goth band @ 37th & Zen

Norfolk, Virginia, United States

Norfolk, Virginia, United States

Nov
09
Cliff and Ivy, Alaska's only goth band @ The Depot

Baltimore, Maryland, United States

Baltimore, Maryland, United States

Nov
08
Cliff and Ivy, Alaska's only goth band @ Brighton Bar

Long Branch, New Jersey, United States

Long Branch, New Jersey, United States

Oct
20
Cliff and Ivy, Alaska's only goth band @ Rage City Rollergirls Half time show

Anchorage, Alaska, United States

Anchorage, Alaska, United States

Jun
23
Cliff and Ivy, Alaska's only goth band @ Alaska Hempfest

copper center, Alaska, United States

copper center, Alaska, United States

Apr
28
Cliff and Ivy, Alaska's only goth band @ The Vintage Cocktail Lounge

Garden Grove, California, United States

Garden Grove, California, United States

Apr
27
Cliff and Ivy, Alaska's only goth band @ Gadi's Restaurant & Bar

Yucca Valley, California, United States

Yucca Valley, California, United States

Apr
26
Cliff and Ivy, Alaska's only goth band @ Double Down Saloon

Las Vegas, Nevada, United States

Las Vegas, Nevada, United States

Apr
25
Cliff and Ivy, Alaska's only goth band @ Hyperion Public

Los Angeles, California, United States

Los Angeles, California, United States

Oct
14
Cliff and Ivy, Alaska's only goth band @ The Golden Bull Bar

Oakland, California, United States

Oakland, California, United States

Oct
13
Cliff and Ivy, Alaska's only goth band @ Beatnik Lounge

Joshua Tree, California, United States

Joshua Tree, California, United States

Oct
12
Cliff and Ivy, Alaska's only goth band @ Doll Hut

Anaheim, California, United States

Anaheim, California, United States

Oct
11
Cliff and Ivy, Alaska's only goth band @ Hyperion Avenue Tavern

Los Angeles, California, United States

Los Angeles, California, United States

Jul
30
Cliff and Ivy, Alaska's only goth band @ Alaska Hempfest

copper center, Alaska, United States

copper center, Alaska, United States

Jul
09
Cliff and Ivy, Alaska's only goth band @ Ester Community Park

Ester, Alaska, United States

Ester, Alaska, United States

Jun
03
Cliff and Ivy, Alaska's only goth band @ Hard Rock Cafe Anchorage

Anchorage, Alaska, United States

Anchorage, Alaska, United States

May
21
Cliff and Ivy, Alaska's only goth band @ Hard Rock Cafe Anchorage

Anchorage, Alaska, United States

Anchorage, Alaska, United States

May
03
Cliff and Ivy, Alaska's only goth band @ Alaska Center for Alternative Lifestyles

Anchorage, Alaska, United States

Anchorage, Alaska, United States

Apr
15
Cliff and Ivy, Alaska's only goth band @ Radio Free Joshua Tree

Joshua Tree, California, United States

Joshua Tree, California, United States

Apr
14
Cliff and Ivy, Alaska's only goth band @ Doll Hut

Anaheim, California, United States

Anaheim, California, United States

Apr
13
Cliff and Ivy, Alaska's only goth band @ The Studio Venue

Burbank, California, United States

Burbank, California, United States

Apr
12
Cliff and Ivy, Alaska's only goth band @ Hyperion Avenue Tavern

Los Angeles, California, United States

Los Angeles, California, United States

Apr
09
Cliff and Ivy, Alaska's only goth band @ Ipso Facto

Fullerton, California, United States

Fullerton, California, United States

Music

Press


From Alaska's only goth band to World Goth Band 2019! We were named World of Goth Band for the year of 2019 by World of Goth Magazine. - World of Goth Magazine LLC


"a tribute album done their way" - "the excitement of yore done darker, nastier, less giddy, than say the "brothers" black humored joshing about psychosurgery or Iggy Stooge run roughshod on adrenaline. Covering The Screamers' obscure "It's a Violent World" is the tell; both its title and this rendition are so vicious, they could be booked for assault. The whole LP could." - The Big Takeover Magazine #83 2018


"Alaska’s veteran goth rockers aren’t fooling around... they make affinity to the original L.A. death rock scene of 35 years ago plain, again recording there with Screamers/Twisted Roots legend Paul Roessler and inviting Christian Death pioneers Rikk Agnew and Gitane Demone to guest ... (on) apocalyptic post-punk nightmares such as “Fossil Fuel”... If the world’s going to hell, we need albums like this.
... and to hear the same thing only even more savage on stage, including a nasty thrashing of another vintage L.A. classic, The Gun Club’s 1981 Fire of Love opener, “Sex Beat”... (Live in the City of Fallen Angels) sure suggests C&I are a harrowing live attraction, too. ..." - Big Takeover Magazine


Where do you currently reside? How relevent is the goth scene there?

We (Cliff and Ivy) live in Anchorage, Alaska. I guess you could say that nature has its gothic elements here. It's dark all day and night in the winter. You can see the northern lights (aurora borealis) in the sky at night, mostly in the winter. In the summer it's bright sunlight all day and all night. Ravens are everywhere. Wolves, owls, bats, bears and moose all live near where people live. In the summer there are giant plants, since the sun is up all day and night. Grass and flowers grow taller than a person, with beautiful flowers. Even the weeds are unusual and pretty – like fireweed and devil's club. The insects that live among the flowers are also unusual and large, like harvestman spiders and dragonflies, and Alaska is the home of the huge mosquito. There are a few people who identify as goth, and there are resident vampires here! However the scene is very small right now. Mostly younger people like Scary Ms Carrie, discovering the genre and this is cool because they are very creative and making it their own. There is a small young punk scene which is quite open minded and into art too, and the goth kids crossover with punk. Despite the fact that the scene is small people are dedicated to throwing shows, inspiring each other and making something interesting happen. I believe goth is becoming more relevant. The dominant entertainment culture is like a 90s-metal pizza topped with safe hipster indie rock, a little EDM, and some folk/Americana. Washed down with the latest craft beer. The punk/goth and the hip hop scenes are generally not part of the meal. However I believe they can smell what we're cooking.

When did you first get turned onto goth and darkwave?

I was into gothic themed things as a child. I grew up in a small town in New Jersey - long before the internet. I had a lot of time just to do what I wanted to do and didn't have to worry too much about what others thought. I enjoyed tarot cards, and “gypsy witch” cards, the Ouija board game, astrology, making magical things with herbs, “pyramid power”, bending and moving objects with your mind, making my own dolls, painting and drawing, caring for animals, and spending a lot of time by myself or with a few friends just being outdoors. I loved Egyptian art and history, antiques, and what we now call “oddities”- things like weird taxidermy, old medical instruments and such. I loved Halloween and still do. I would go to the graveyard and do charcoal impressions of the old stones. When I was 12 I was the “card reader” at my elementary school's “May Fair”. A few adults were upset with me and told me what I was doing was “evil”. I wasn't sure why they had a problem with me. I did a book report in 6th grade on Anne Rice's “Interview With The Vampire”. I watched Dark Shadows and Creature Double Feature on TV. A lot of bats would come out at night where I lived, and once I had one that my cat caught, and I tried to heal it to set it free. I was called a witch since I was a child. I first heard gothic and punk music on the college radio station out of Philadelphia. I would stay up at night listening to it and knew I had to learn all about the scene and that I would eventually find new people and places to hang out. I would get music from the record store according to what I heard on radio or just cool artwork on the album, and sometimes get the band info out of Maximum Rock n Roll and local zines. I went to the punk, goth and deathrock shows of the day in the area. Since I was sort of near NYC I could take the bus in and go to clubs and shows there. I met a lot of goth/darkwave people and art people and the scene was very creative. I went to art college and there were more people into this music and they were doing photography, sculpture, painting and performance art. I was a painting major so we would stay up all night painting, writing and listening to music – like The Cure, Christian Death, The Cramps, The Birthday Party, Gang of Four, 45 Grave, Nina Hagen Band, Diamanda Galas, a lot of hardcore bands, and you get ideas from what others are listening to. I met Cliff while in college and we went to a lot of shows together, like Siouxsie and The Banshees, PIL, Diamanda Galas, the hardcore punk scene, and we got really into Killing Joke, and saw them many times – we are of course still fans. In recent years I'm interested in dark psychedelic music, quite experimental and taking you on a journey I always like to have themes of immortality or remembrance after death in my art. In college I did a performance in the local graveyard using masks among the beautiful historic gravestones.

When did you first begin to play music? What kind of instruments do you play?

I started playing the piano when I was a child. I had lessons starting in about 3rd grade. I liked to use my tape recorder to make weird sounding recordings just for my own entertainment or to use for putting on a show. I took my piano apart and played it in different ways, like hitting the strings with a pencil eraser, with a metal rod, or hitting the sound board of it, just trying all different sounds a piano could make. I played piano for the chorus in my high school. I still play. I play keyboard synthesizer too. I have played drums for over 20 years. I started playing in the living room at my apartment because someone left a drum set there. Cliff wanted to practice guitar and he said “go over there and play the drums.” I said I can't play and he said who cares do it anyway. So we played Ramones songs for me to practice to and I just did not give up on it no matter how much it hurt. I had no idea if I was any good. One time I went downstairs and passed by the guy who worked in the parking deck right below my apartment. I said “hi” and he said - “You know that guy who's playing drums up there where you live? He's getting to be pretty good!” So I kept on playing and went on to play drums in bands with Cliff for years. We had a punk band called The Gout, a punk band called Warm Love, a garage rock band called The Dolphin Room, a post-punk band called Lesser Koodoo, a post-punk band called Turan Sul, and an industrial band called Parallax1. I don't know how many female industrial drummers there were at the time. We did experimental performance art theater with electronic tracks, handmade instruments, and projections, and I played drums for all of these. I still play. And now I sing! I always liked to sing but I have a really low register of singing so as you grow up there isn't a lot of acceptance or worth such as available vocal training given to that if you are a female singer and you are in a small town. I did sing in the choir too but always the low parts. The higher voices were always more glamorous and popular. As an adult I find that singing is really interesting and confrontational and it makes me happy to express myself this way.

Tell us about the project(s) you are currently in.

Cliff and Ivy is our duo project. We perform live as a duo with Cliff on guitar and we use backing tracks, and I sing. We also perform with other band members as we have in the past – when they are available and it works out to play. We have been so lucky to be able to perform onstage live with Gitane Demone, Rikk Agnew, Paul Roessler, Deb Venom and Sky Lee Vague! It is truly an experience like no other when we play with them. They are geniuses of this genre and others - and so skillful, bringing exactly what works to the music! We have learned so much and been inspired. We use dark/horror themes in our performance and have some experimental poetry with music from a horror film sound track we are working on. The film is by an Alaskan film maker RocketJoe Productions and it's called Seven Bones. We are also making music for a museum environment for local artist James Havens, who works with paleontologists in Alaska – he researches, reconstructs and paints scenes of dinosaurs found in Alaska. He's making a museum of dinosaurs and art. It's fantastic! (Alaska is the number one state for paleontology studies as there are so many Ice Age and older fossils here, and many discoveries about people here and the way they lived in times of prehistory.) I use animal shadow masks that I make and give some of them to the audience to keep. I also make horror doll characters that interact with the audience (such as telling a story and spitting fake blood.) So we do have an element of dark comedy. We try to present something creative and professional sounding that you can contemplate, makes you think, and you can dance to it! We are working on a new music video for our song Reincarnation from CXI111, doing new recording demos for our upcoming time in Los Angeles, to record at Kitten Robot again. We are getting ready to tour.


What was your most recent release with Cliff and Ivy? Tell us about writing, collaborations, recording, etc.
Our recent release is the album CXI111, self released on our own label – House of Extreme Darkness. It's our second full length release. It includes thirteen new tracks- gothic, dark post-punk, art rock, hardcore, metal and dark psychedelic tunes which we hope to reach out and touch your heart and soul. It's a pretty diverse release – we have tracks that are experimental spoken word, gothic rock, hardcore, and a 20 min epic dark psychedelic track which is straight up doom. We were so lucky and inspired to collaborate on some tracks with long time musicians from the Los Angeles area who lived and created the gothic and deathrock scene and are still creating new exciting music! They are a joy to spend time with and we were and are so honored to have this chance to work with them. Rikk Agnew (Christian Death, Adolescents, Rikk Agnew Band, Social Distortion, DI, Only Theater of Pain (OTOP), Gitane Demone Quartet (GDQ) played lead guitar, and it was amazing to listen to what he came up with. Gitane Demone (Christian Death, OTOP, GDQ and more) sang backing vocals and gave the songs so much creative energy and mystery. Paul Roessler (Screamers, 45 Grave, Nina Hagen Band) played piano and mixed/produced – I learned again how much I love creating on the spot as Paul pushed us to improvise – I was very much out of my comfort zone, in a good way – being pushed forward by the energy of the group and recording everything we did! Deb Venom (OTOP, GDQ, A Bleeding Sky), played synth and bass – she is a very experienced artist, fun to work with and super skilled in recording and mixing – she recorded/engineered/produced the track Silent Solitaire in her studio. Sky Lee Vague (Spirit Before a Fall, A Bleeding Sky, and more) played drums – Sky has great energy, he's quite intense and a good friend who plays not only fantastic drumming but is a multi -instrumentalist and totally dedicated to music.
Our friend Brian Troisi (Neanderthal Studio) recorded drums on some of the tracks. Jeremiah Saint – a great gothic industrial artist from Palm Desert did backing vocals, acoustic guitar, synthesizer on one track. The song Silent Solitaire was co-written with Deb Venom and Jeremiah Saint. We also worked with noted Alaskan jazz trumpeter Yngvil Vatn Guttu on one track – The Ritual - she is a friend and a very active artist in Alaska and the international jazz scene. Tracks for CXI111 were recorded in Alaska at House of Extreme Darkness Studio, in Los Angeles CA at Kitten Robot Studio, and at Appropriate Music Studio in Anaheim CA and in New Jersey at Neanderthal Studio. Many hours across the miles made it happen.

What is your inspiration for creating music for Cliff and Ivy?

We are inspired by many things. I am inspired by Cliff as he has been with me for years pushing me to create. We are quite isolated here in Alaska. The beautiful animals of the night and the glaciers, the norther lights, and the trees and flowers here in Alaska. We are inspired by all the great music we know and love throughout the years. I write our songs' lyrics using a sensory process. I have synesthesia which is a condition where you mix up the senses, seeing sounds, feeling colors etc, in your mind. I have a dictionary that is very old and it's a huge book. I place my hands on it and can feel colors that go with the words. I then arrange them into a color pattern which tells a story. Sometimes it's very abstract and sometimes it has a story line. It creates very unusual beautiful images in your mind. We have 2 teenage boys who both experience Autism. They inspire me so much. Loving them and caring for them has taught me deeply about emotions, communication, and how people see things differently. It has taught me hard lessons about how others see those who are different from “the norm”. I am now truly free because of them. We will always be ourselves, different and see the world in our own way. Who or how else is there to be anyway?

Describe a typical show in Alaska. Do you get to play often in this area or do you need to travel out to play more often?

We don't play out too often in Alaska. The music scene here is just too small for more. A typical show for us is an all ages punk show or an arts festival. We are playing the 2nd annual Hempfest here in Alaska June 23-25. The summer festival scene is definitely growing here. I would love to see Alaska get a big creative festival with real current bands that people want to go see. We can definitely entertain, and people do like our shows when they see us. We do need to play outside of Alaska! We love playing shows in Los Angeles where we have met many like minded people, we feel connected to people there. Alaska enjoyed some rare shows this last Halloween – Oct 2016 – Gitane Demone Quartet and A Bleeding Sky played in Anchorage and in Fairbanks, with Cliff and Ivy, and local bands. - Her Corrosion - Women in Goth


Cliff and Ivy are "one of the more original and intriguing projects in the international goth music scene right now ... with guitar that is at once exotic and abrasive, and layered vocals that flit between ritualistic chanting, wailing and spoken word (their) sound occupies it's own unique and surreal space" (http://gothic-rock.com, August 2015) - gothic-rock.com


1. What was it that got you into goth and goth music from the start?
Cliff : Horror movies, punk rock and disability. I liked the old school horror movie look.
Growing up on the east coast, part of my experience is being treated as an outsider for
having a learning disability – dyslexia. I just think differently so I was always treated as
an outsider at school. Now I know that dyslexia, synesthesia and adhd are connected
with autism.
Ivy: I've always been into powerful art and music. I liked 70's horror movies, vampires,
witches, and the supernatural trends of the day like pyramid power and bending spoons
with your mind. I've been called a witch since I was a child. I can see people's aura's and
shadow people, and I have seen ghosts as a child. I liked the early hardcore punk scene
and there were deathrock and gothic bands after that too. I grew up in a small town in
south New Jersey so college radio out of Philadelphia was a big influence. About the
only cool thing was a Rocky Horror group at the mall so I got involved and found some
like minded people through that. These people were really into the Misfits, Siouxsie and
the Banshees, The Gun Club, the Cramps and Gary Numan/Tubeway Army at the time.
2. How did the two of you come to meet? We met at a Clash concert at Rutgers College in New
Jersey, in 1984. We got to be friends and started a punk band called The Gout. We got close
together over music. Ivy would ride her bike over to band practice at Cliff's house. We've been
playing music together since 1984.
3. What are some things fans may not know about Cliff and Ivy? What sort of thing keeps
you occupied in your spare time or day to day life? (Hobbies collections favorite
passtimes etc)
Ivy: We have 2 teenage sons with autism so caring for them and communicating with
them takes up a large part of my time. Our sons sang backup on “Blackflower
Breakdown” (on CXI111). I like to advocate for people with disability as I also have a
brother who experiences disability. I think alot about how people perceive the world in
a different way and how much people pass judgement on others for being different than
“the norm”. I have a Master's degree in Education. I went to art school before that and
studied painting, drawing, sculpture and psychology. I like to write, draw, paint, sew
costumes and make masks. I've had a few gallery shows in the past and have done work
making props for theater and as a sculptor' studio assistant. I like to go shopping at
thrift stores and pawn shops, and collect whatever catches my eye – art, jewelry, etc. I
have a collection of metaphysical books which were acquired during the pre-internet
days. I like to create interactive props like horror dolls and masks that involve the
audience – I like to share my art this way on stage. I also love to read sci fi and watch sci
fi movies, and I'm a big fan of Dune. I love bats of course. Did you know that Alaska has
5 species of wild bats? They are very elusive but they do hibernate in the winter and are
active in the summer. We both do internet radio – we are DJs on wickedspinsradio.org
(UK) and wfku.org (NYC) and we welcome mp3s submitted by bands doing any type of
original music with a dark feel to it.
Cliff: I do like comic books, crazy horror films and B movies. I have a small collection of
horror and B movie posters. My older cousins had some movie posters from the 60s and
I really liked those. I have a collection of old 8mm films. And comic books and record
albums. I like the art in comics as opposed to the stories. As a dyslexic I was more
interested in the visual storytelling. My favorite artwork is the comic book art that was
influenced by surrealists , dada, and mystical studies.
4. Briefly describe each of your roles in the band or otherwise?
Ivy : I co-write, play piano and synth, I write all the lyrics, I sing, I create and edit audio
files for backing tracks, and help with arrangements and rhythm ideas. I create the band
art and logos. I don't generally play drums in this band but I have played drums for over
20 years so I can play drums in a recording situation or if we jam with other players.
Cliff: I play guitar, bass, co-writer, arrangements, recording, producer, engineer.
5. Your music is thought provoking awe inspiring sensational some may argue
personification or even pyschadelic taking you on a journey of the mind. Where do you
draw inspiration from for such uniqueness? What sort of set up do you have
instruments sfx pedals etc anything special that helps you achieve such a deep sound
atmosphere?
Ivy: I have synesthesia which is a sensory condition in which you mix up sound, touch,
taste, color, texture, temperature, etc. Mine has to do with words; I can see words in
color and feel them in color too. I choose them from a dictionary or other book based
on color and arrange them into a pattern which then tells a story. Also, I can hear
musical tones as colors that have shape. Song arrangements or choices of how to create
a feeling are coming filtered through a visual image for me.
The lyrics inform the song and they end up telling outrageous stories that may or may
not become resolved. When we write songs we care very much about the craft of them,
and how each part makes you feel. The lyrics are often eerie and seem to tell of history
or the future, they sound kind of like Nostradamus. Whether there is any truth in it or
not is up to the listener! It is definitely in the vein of dark psychedelic!
I play a Yamaha digital piano which has good string sounds, and an M Audio Venom
synth which has some great circuit bent sounds that you can manipulate. Paul Roessler
produced CXI111 so the overall finished product is due to his genius at Kitten Robot
Studio. I was fortunate to sing into a great mic there.
Cliff: We've been listening to music for years – there is such great music all the time and
you have to be open to it to be inspired from it. There's a theater edge to it – we are like
a stage theater group too, as we do performance art in our show and bring that energy
to it as well. Some of the songs – the guitar has alternative tunings. I use the devil's
chord on some songs. I get inspired by the music itself.
6.Who are some of your biggest goth influences or other influences?
Ivy: Probably Siouxsie and The Banshees and Killing Joke are my biggest influences. I've been
lucky enough to see both perform live a couple times. I also like The Prodigy, Gary Numan, and
many more. I like that there are new bands working in this genre, like Gitane Demone Quartet,
and A Bleeding Sky, also many of the traditional bands are still creating. I like goth because it can
contain many different influences and in my opinion is the most open minded group of creative
people – not so restrictive as far as the rules of music go. There's a lifetime of creating and
discovery in this genre. I like Christopher Lee, the Mother Superior in Dune, Maleficent,
Sweeney Todd, and Fantasia.
Cliff: Bela Lugosi, Lon Chaney, Christopher Lee, Killing Joke, The Misfits. Also Gang of Four, and
many great hardcore punk bands from the old days. The great dance music and disco of the 70s
– early hip hop was very close to puck rock and very DIY. Heavy dance music – hypnotic beats.
The basic concept that music can transform you physically and spiritually . The idea that music is
transformative – it can be subversive because music can change your life. Music creates culture.
That's what we are trying to do here in Alaska.
7.What is the goth scene like in Alaska?
Ivy: Very small. We are and continue to be the only goth band. However I feel it is slowly
growing. There are young people who are inspired to be themselves in the punk scene which
includes goth and there are a few personas who do cosplay and cabaret performer with
dark/gothic themes. Alaska is sort of known for always being ten years or more behind so there
is a glut of '90s style metal bands and associated personas. There's been a loss of cool venues
which hosted the artsy/new music culture of a few years back and a rise of places which are pay
to play or will only book certain mainstream influenced bands. Overall people are less willing to
take a conceptual risk and less knowledgeable of anything outside the mainstream. Which is
why alot of what we do is “showing up”. Being “goth in public” is still a way to shake up the
mainstream here, sometimes it's welcome and sometimes it's not. For example we've been
kicked out of a festival for our music/persona, while performing, and we've been offered gigs
when we are in a public space, because we stick out. Last summer we were offered a gig to
perform at the graveyard for a history themed event. Marijuana is legal in Alaska so we are
hoping that the culture will become more tolerant of creative music/sounds/art etc. There is a
Hempfest here and some newer alternative festivals so we support them and it shows growing
creativity.
Cliff: It feels still like a wild frontier. People can be themselves and do what you want to do.
Nobody really bothers you too much. If someone is goth people are usually pretty cool with it.
Looking forward to the scene growing. Would like to do some more goth promotion here and
host more shows, release more music on our label House of Extreme Darkness, and continue
with our internet radio shows. I feel like “Johnny Appleseed” and a bit like Dr Frankenstein –
we are planting seeds and nurturing a goth scene here. Trying to turn people on to music they
may not know about with our radio show and our band. Because of the intenet now people
don't have to just listen to commercial radio or what is being shoved down your throat. We get
more of a world view. We have fans all over the world. People have heard of us internationally
now – everyone is learning about Alaska's only goth band!
8.What is your favorite song of yours to perform?
Ivy – I like to perform “I Am I Am I Am” with our collaborators from Los Angeles – we recorded
CXI111 at Kitten Robot Studio with Rikk Agnew, Gitane Demone, Paul Roessler, and Deb Venom
(Gitane Demone Quartet) and Sky Lee Vague (A Bleeding Sky). This song was a jam, 20 minutes
long, that was created in the studio. To play it live for an audience is magic.
Cliff: Currently I like to play Monkshood Bloodshed on CXI111. I like the punk rock/deathrock
vibe of it.
9.What can we expect from Cliff & Ivy in the year to come and on? Any comments or
announcements events about C & I etc?
We will play and record in Los Angeles and area April 2017:
April 6 – Blacklight District Lounge in Long Beach CA with The Veins, and A Bleeding Sky
April 7 – Hear us on KXLU with Stella – Straypop show CA
April 8 – at the Redwood Bar in Los Angeles, CA with Gitane Demone Quartet
April 9 – early all ages appearance at Ipso Facto clothing store in Fullerton CA
April 12 – at Club Dingaling, Hyperion Tavern Los Angeles CA
April 13 – live streaming studio show on You Tube, The Studio Venue, Burbank,
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pRWxMv0WiGI
April 14 – at The Dollhut, Anaheim CA
April 15 – at the Beatnik Lounge, Joshua Tree CA
We hope to play on the east coast/midwest in August. Those dates are TBA but the plan is to
tour as support to an Italian goth band called Christine Plays Viola.
10.What are your touring plans for the U.S. or outside U.S. conventions etc?
Ivy: We hope to tour as much as we can given our resources. I would love to play in the UK, and
Germany, we have fans in both places. We are trying to get resources to travel, it is expensive to
fly from Alaska. Playing Wave Gotik Treffen in Germany is on my bucket list.
Cliff: We want to play everywhere. Currently we play as a duo out of necessity but we would like
to tour with a full band again.
11. Any comments on the current scene or world goth collective? or What are some current
positives or/ challenges you face have faced or are facing etc?
Cliff: For us a challenge and inspiration has to do with being an outsider and not fitting with the
mainstream.
Ivy : We have been lucky to be on a number of international compilations, such as For The Bats I,
II and III, At Sea Compliations La Danse Macabre 2 , and 33 Goth Bands You Should Know VOL 4,
We have a great review of CXI111 in The Big Takeover, #79.
I appreciate the diversity of music now and there are people doing some wonderful
experimental work just on the desktop – witch house is still a thing and using noise and horror
elements in music.
We can truly say the goth scene is everywhere including the frozen north. We love meeting
people from all over through our music and are so honored to be a part of this international
scene. - World of Goth Magazine


“CXI111... a great ghoulish album... C & I are as shadowy, sinister/menacing, heavy and uncategorizable as goth/postpunk trailblazers... Christian Death and The Screamers ... add Play Dead and Killing Joke's industrial fireball... plus some David Bowie "future Legend" like spoken word... Never mind Black Flag, this is creepy crawl!” - The Big Takeover Magazine


Gothic and creepy - that's the only way to describe another unique one song offering from the only Alaskan goths we're aware of... the 1980Cure/1981 Killing Joke Predilections of their New Blood/Old World EP have given way to a witches brew of horror movie post-punk, like a spawn of Choir Invisible and Christian Death in the early Frontier days- with a little Juju Siouxsie's Banshees... - Big Takeover Magazine - Jack Rabid


Marketing themselves as Alaska’s only goth band, Cliff and Ivy are formed around husband and wife team Cliff Monk and Ivy Silence. Whilst it’s hard to deny their claim for local honours, ‘Springtime OF Pure Reason’ is certainly a pleasingly ambitious record which encompasses a breadth of genres. ‘Get Up’ ensures the EP sets off to a fun, punky start where chanted vocals mix with swirling keyboards and wild guitar shapes. The staccato vocals and playful arrangement prove that comparisons with Devo are entirely justified. The next track is the same song but in “explicit” form so we can only assume the first version is for a family goth audience. After this punchy beginning, the group are in a sombre and more reflective mode for ‘Lost Your Soul’. Revolving around a simple descending (yet highly addictive) keyboard hook, the song immediately grabs your attention, whilst the doomy chorus is reminiscent of Sister Of Mercy. ‘Superclass’ somehow balances an incongruous mix of 60’s girl pop vocals and heavy metal with dignity intact. Then, for the final two tracks ‘Transplant’ and ‘Radiant’, metal plays a prominent role again but this time alongside dark poetry, with Ivy Silence performing a fine Siouxsie Sioux impersonation for the latter.

So, in truth, the goth label only tells a small part of the Cliff And Ivy story. The group covers an impressive array of musical bases and moods amongst these five songs, which should cement their position as the best goth/punk/spoken word/metal hybrid in Alaska. - Leonard's Lair


“Alaska’s only goth band” was not expected billing, given this Anchorage pair’s darkwave/new wave/punk wave/cold wave predilections on last year’s Springtide of Pure Reason EP (with ex-Germs drummer Don Bolles, and KRAMER production) or 2012’s Equilux. But damned if “In Your Hands (New Blood)” doesn’t summon memories of The Cure’s Pornography. The tribal toms and callous bass are pure "The Hanging Garden”; only Ivy Silence pursues something more hostile in lieu of 1980 Robert Smith- harrowing, huskily talk-narrating like Cruella De Vil gone Madame Defarge, before a chorus of furies/fairies turn her into Lady MacBeth- for whom all the soaps in Arabia wouldn't wash the (new) blood off her hands. Cruelty and fright = strong, modern, danceable goth! (cliffandivy.bandcamp.com)
www.bigtakeover.com - Jack Rabid, Editor- Big Takeover Magazine Issue #76 (Print Magazine)


We were lucky enough to have a few moments with Alaska’s Cliff and Ivy. How has the Memorial Day weekend been for you?

It was good- a very sunny weekend, in alaska we have 24 hr (almost) sunlight in the summer. We just created a soundtrack for a local theater group doing Shakespeare’s Macbeth at Cyrano’s playhouse in Anchorage. It was directed by David Edgecombe, University of Alaska Theater professor, who created a new dark modern vision of the play. This was his last show before retirement. The play went on tour to other alaskan cities and towns. We spent much of our sunny spring exploring emotional darkness and putting it into music.imag1203-2-1-2-1

The music that you two make are deep enough to require listeners to fully immerse themselves into the band’s recording. What about your music separates you from bands that only require a surface listening?

The more you listen to it the more you can find in it. We approach the music with each element being part of a palette. We’ve been playing music together since 1984 (we were teenagers) so we have a natural complexity. We hear notes, passages and hooks on a gut level and this is how we songwrite. We write lyrics from a process of synesthesia. Ivy can see and feel colors associated with words, so she chooses them based on this sensory process and then they become assembled into a passage. Listeners tell us that they hear prophecy, surrealist poetry, and radical paganism in the lyrics! But this is part of a personal experience for them yet it is transformative.

We are Alaska’s only goth band. We know that we are not “for” everyone but our music could be heard by anyone. We can put different moods and feelings into music for movies, tv, games, or other environments. It’s up to us to decide what goth is in this place. There are plenty of dark themes and stories here, for it’s where the spirits dwell.

Free embed music player from ReverbNation.com

New Blood Old World is your latest album, but the story never begins and ends with an album. Can you give us a little bit about the act’s backstory?

We started out doing punk bands together, Ivy on drums and Cliff on guitar with different bands. In the 90s we played industrial music, and we were doing projects with Invisible Records (Martin Atkins) and Underground Inc (remixes and exclusive tracks).

We toured on the east coast and played the old North by Northwest festival. We did a cameo on a Pigface track called The Horse You Rode In On with Penn Jillette on it.

Although we played as a duo in California (Bay area) and Alaska, we did work with a 6 piece band when we toured in 2013. Our tour drummer was Don Bolles (The Germs, 45 Grave, currently with Ariel Pink) and we played in LA and area, and then on the east coast. There we recorded an ep (Springtide of Pure Reason) produced by KRAMER (Butthole Surfers, Ween, Low, Galaxie 500 and more). We worked with 3 Alaskan friends, Scott Feris (guitar, Alaska Thunderfunk), Stephanie Feris (backing vocals), and John Irving (synth) who toured with us. Rob Press (Unfinished Symphonies) played synth for us on that east coast tour.

This connected us with bigger scenes in the LA area and on the east coast. Alaska is isolated so we learned to reach out to people.

For New Blood Old World, we recorded this in Alaska in the studio of Peter Ratner who works with mainly classical and jazz musicians. The drums were tracked in New Jersey by our good friend Brian Troisi, a very experienced drummer and longtime friend who has done projects with Cliff Monk over the years.

More recently we’ve added performance art to our shows. We played on the street in downtown Anchorage, busking, and we played an outdoor festival. We made shadow-masks in the shape of animal faces and we used them while performing. We did descriptive singing and had some special music to go with it. We gave the masks out to the audience. People really enjoyed getting them and dancing behind their masks. We make goth /horror character dolls and diaolgue with them on stage. We do costumes and weird symbolic props that we interact with. One example is a stack of books that gets stabbed and oozes blood. We see it as another way to reach out to the audience and have art to interact with. Also people get to take some handmade masks home.

How has the band changed in the time that has passed from the first sessions to the post-New Blood Old World practices?

We played in punk bands when we started out- ivy on drums and Cliff on guitar. Our first band was called The Gout. We lived in New Jersey at the time so we got to see and play with a bunch of the 80’s hardcore bands and be in the scene. We played at CBGBs and went to tons of shows there. We played at the Court Tavern which grew to be like the “CBGBs of New Jersey”. We played with other hardcore bands like Pleased Youth and Adrenalin OD. We had a punk band called The Dolphin Room which was most often compared to X. As the 80s went on we had a band called Lesser Koodoo which moved into a dark punk, tribal, industrial, gothic psychedelic sound. We then formed as a rock/metal/industrial band called Parallax1, which toured as a duo and a band. Parallax1 showcased at the old NXNW festival in Portland.

We have changed lineups. 2010 we started Cliff and Ivy as a duo- we went to LA and recorded a demo with Ashley Witt, who worked on soundtracks with Tim Burton and Danny Elfman, he has music in the film Titanic, the Olympics and did session work U2, No Doubt and Fleetwood Mac. Our friend Toby Record had a label called All Ears, specializing in licensing for films. So we did this for this label, the result being the album Equilux.

We’ve changed main instrumentation. Ivy sings and plays keyboard and synth. Cliff plays guitar and bass.

Our currrent music is self released on our own label called House of Extreme Darkness.

We’ve kept our outsider mentality.

As we have discussed, it seems that Cliff and Ivy is a very productive band. You have released a score to a theatre production of Macbeth. What should listeners expect from this title?

It’s creepy, haunting and magical. It was so great to see the actors engaging with our music and conveying the total tragedy aspect. This soundtrack will stick with you. Listeners tell us they get obsessed with some of them particularly the dream sequence ones and listen over and over… You can get it at www.cliffandivy.bandcamp.com

How can listeners listen of your music?

You can stream or download music from www.cliffandivy.bandcamp.com, and www.cliffandivy.com,

or www.reverbnation.com/cliffandivy

We’re at www.facebook.com/cliffandivy , cliffandivy@gmail.com and @CliffandIvy

We do an internet radio show, called Extreme Darkness With Cliff and Ivy on www.wickedspinsradio.org – you can hear our music and we support other bands by playing their goth, punk, hardcore, metal and experimental music.

A little bit of an aside, what two or three bands would constitute a “dream lineup” for Cliff and Ivy to play alongside? What role does each act hold in the creation of the Cliff and Ivy sound?

Killing Joke. They are a huge influence on us. We met them on our honeymoon which was in London. We ran into Martin Atkins there by chance and he was playing with them at the time. We’ve known them since then and have seen them many times. They loom large in our legend.

Gitane Demone Quartet. Rikk Agnew (The Adolescents, DI, Christian Death and more), Gitane Demone (Christian Death), Paul Roessler (45 Grave, The Screamers) and the talented Deb Venom. They came to see us when we played in LA. It was an honor, as they are goth royalty. They are a great band and come from a similar musical wellspring!

Ministry. They bring the melding of industrial, hardcore punk and thrash metal. They sound like a motor. This has been go to music for us for years, bringing the aggression.

What does the rest of 2015 hold for you? Any sort of live dates in support of New Blood Old World?

More local gigs and working on the theatrical parts. We are making new music with a harder edged sound. We recently received a sponsorship from Sony corp which will allow us to work on better video and to do film score.

We are working on new music video.

We are in negotiations to do the soundtrack for a feature length Alaskan horror film called SEVEN BONES, By RocketJoe Films.

We are arranging for Fall showcases in the Los Angeles area.

We are hoping to do a short tour either in the US or UK next year.

Finally, do you have any thoughts for NeuFutur’s readers?

Never give up on your dreams. Music lasts a lifetime. We serve no master.

Thank you so much for your time. - James McQuiston


Alaska’s Cliff and Ivy have just released a music video for their single, “In Your Hands (New Blood)”. The track itself builds off of the goth music of the late eighties and nineties (45 Grave, Sisters of Mercy, Switchblade Serenade) and succeeds based on the sheer energy and multi-faceted approach that the band takes. In Your Hands (New Blood) will require multiple listens to break free the multiple vocals, drums / bass / guitar dynamic, and the multiple nods to different styles, approaches, and genres. The video does well in capturing the overall spirit of the video and will introduce listeners to this otherworldly act. - Neufutur Magazine James McQuiston


Cliff and Ivy come from Alaska (as proof that our music is diffused in all global latitudes by now) . They propose “In Your Hands” (Old World Mix), a suggestive song characterized n brano by female vocals reciting on a dark music canvas (literally, "carpet"). It an engaging tale, full of pathos, which mutates into a chant with spectral nuances towards the end. - Versacrum


... I really appreciate Ivy's voice that I think has characteristics both Nico / Marianne Faithfull and Siouxsie and Toyah... - Skrutt Magazine


" Cliff and Ivy are a great new band from Anchorage Alaska. Totally amazing. My Fiancee Gitane and I went to see Them with the MauMaus on Sunday Matinee in REDWOOD BAR. They are incredible! WOW! and They had Don Bolles on drums who killed it as usual! Mau Maus were amazing as well. A great show put on by the equally amazing Bob Cantu! Great sound by The Mixmonster Ed Fantl. Look out for Why? Things Burn! "
RIKK AGNEW - https://www.facebook.com/pages/Rikk-Agnew/113906245286873


check out a cool video of Cliff and Ivy live at Skinny's in NoHo, Los Angeles. - you tube


This is a short documentary video about Cliff and Ivy, by Alaska Public Broadcasting! - Indie Alaska, Alaska Public Broadcasting


Excerpt from Fall 2013 Vol. V, Issue 3. It's as if Enigma, Nine Inch Nails, and the Matrix Trilogy had a three-way in a Hot Topic fitting room, and produced a love child named Equilux. If you need a good soundtrack to drive through a post apocalyptic wasteland, Cliff Monk and Ivy Silence's latest album would be it. There is an immediate feeling of futuristic, dark dread, with almost loathsome energy that radiates from the music. There is an intended message in Equilux, mixed through heavily synthesized, widely diverse instruments and lyrics. You feel an enduring sadness coupled with a constant beating electronic vibe throughout early all the tracks. Many of the songs have a few heart pounding moments where several varieties all come together and really make you feel something provocative. You get a sense there is a building dread toward the future of mankind, but its as if Cliff and Ivy have accepted the bleak fate, and they're ok with it. "The Development of Democracy" is a track that really stands out and represents what they're all about, "Ancient anxiety, build democracy, a rosaceous mystery" is the main chorus, but even after hearing it repeated many times it still carries profound meaning. Equilux portrays a clear energy as nearly every track has constant spoken word by Ivy that basically draws on all the negative and abstract adjectives that one would affix to impending doom and dark betrayal. At times the spoken word is somewhat of a letdown as it seems to keep the better portion of certain tracks from really taking off, but it all helps to paint the inevitable picture. While every song is different they maintain all the same soul of uplifting darkness. Their use of a wide variety of instruments and occasional tribal chanting seamlessly synced together really makes the album an experience, rather than something you just hear. Obviously very modern in nature, there are glimpses of heavy 90s rock chords, and even an occasional hint of new wave emotional undertones from the 80s. The song Get Up actually has some swant early rock and roll funk to it, showing that musically this duo can accomplish some amazing diversity. Beyond all of the potential for strife and finality through the words, I couldnt help but picutre the gals from the original Addicted to Love video when hearing the droning stoic lyrics coming from Ivy. Madonna's Vogue also came to mind more than once throughout this album, especially the portions of spoken rhyme and industrial sass. "In Your Hands" begins like no other track on Equilux. Tribal drums and a bright uplifting chorus set the tone high but it quickly snaps back to reality with the dramatic low piano keys coupling with dark thoughtful lyrics. Then the beautiful chanting begins and the key lifts a bit and you can really feel some depth to the song, and the artists in general. Another track that stands out is Magnify. It starts with a brief segment of drum and bass then Cliff comes in fast and heavy on the guitar and carries it the rest of the way. This is the only track to feature Cliff as the primary vocalist but it maintains the same flow of spoken word with an occasional chorus. Clearly Cliff Monk (guitar, bass, mandolin, vocals) is a musical genius as the range of instrumental sounds used is quite impressive and executed effortlessly. Ivy Silence (lead vocals, piano, synth) seems to be the one syncing it all together with the mood, synth energy, and all that she has to say. Yet in the midst of the jagged edged guitar and deep synth of Equilux, gracefully eloquent and subtle piano will come through. Just as easily, the beauty if some of the tribal chanting will hint that maybe there is still some light in the dark world of Cliff and Ivy, and perhaps just a little bit of hope. - F Magazine- arts and culture in Alaska- download or hardcopy


With “Jack Frost nipping at your nose”, Cliff and Ivy are following right behind with their one-of-a-kind, ice-cold sound. Hailing from Anchorage, Alaska, the band that calls themselves Cliff and Ivy consists of six members: CliffMonk on bass, Ivy Silence on lead vocals, Don Bolles as the tour drummer (The Germs and 45 Grave), Scott Feris on guitar, Stephanie Ward on backing vocals, John Scott on synthesizer & piano. Ivy Silence proudly proclaims that “We’re pretty sure that we are the ONLY gothic, deathrock/punk band in Alaska!” With that being said it’s safe to say that we now know that Cliff and Ivy are original to the frozen core, which makes it even more intriguing to find out more about this Alaskan bunch!

With over 20 years experience writing & performing together, it’s no surprise that the secret to their success has been their wide array of influences. From art, punk, hardcore, old-school goth & EBM to no wave, industrial & tribal music, current events and unwritten history, Cliff and Ivy epitomize the words unique and different. That is what makes their brand so special is the fact that Cliff and Ivy are so incredibly diverse plus it doesn’t hurt that they are the ONLY band of their kind in Alaska!

I recently had the pleasure to review their latest album ‘Equilux’ for Skope (http://www.skopemag.com/2013/09/09/cliff-and-ivy-equilux) which proved to have a lot of promise and dedication as a full record. The group did a minitour this summer in LA and also on the east coast promoting the album. Four tracks from ‘Equilux’ (“Lost Your Soul”, “My Medication”, “Get Up” & “Transplant”) have received radio airplay and they even charted in the Top 10 of the College Music Journal (CMJ) for the week of August 19-25 at WRSU Rutgers Radio.

The lyrics that Ivy pours out are definitely dark ‘n’ direct & quite poetic but also have been called “apocalyptic” in nature. Silence no more as Ivy reveals the meaning behind it all: “I have synesthesia which means that I experience switched around sensations. In other words each word in the lyrics has a certain color and texture. I gather them together and create a visual image which I see in my mind. It’s like creating a painting with words which becomes a story. It’s sort of an experimental way to write lyrics but it is great when a listener really gets a whole story out of them. I’m working on a graphic novel type book with all the lyrics and illustrations for them.”

Killer press/feedback has been rolling in for Cliff and Ivy and they have even been lucky enough to share the stage with some great acts along the way.

The Mau Maus (old-school LA punk)

Year of the Dragon (former members of Fishbone)

Damn Kids (former members of White Zombie)

I Still Have Nightmares (cool new LA goth band)

The Veins (former members of penis flytrap and 45 grave)

The Sacred Spiders (opened for Peter Murphy)

Not only do Cliff and Ivy have a new EP coming out shortly produced by KRAMER (Butthole Surfers, White Zombie, Ween, Urge Overkill, Galaxie 500 & Bongwater), but they are also hitting the town playing shows locally.

https://www.facebook.com/events/213635172148556/
https://www.facebook.com/events/580942695308342/
https://www.facebook.com/events/693042254042283/

And so the frozen tundra has spoken and that is that there is no stopping the force of Cliff and Ivy! So as it is Cliff & Ivy are putting Anchorage, Alaska on the map in terms of hardcore, deathrock/punk music. But Ivy Silence wants to reassure fans & listeners that: “We wont be giving up the electronic gothic industrial sound as this is for studio versions of our songs and when we play out live we definitely rock out!” So get ready as the icy cool group Cliff and Ivy attempt to silence the critics!

http://www.cliffandivy.com/fr_home.cfm
http://www.sonicbids.com/2/EPK/?epk_id=393561 - Skope Magazine


Hailing from Anchorage, Alaska which can prove to be cold as hell in the winter, Cliff and Ivy are on fire with their new release ‘Equilux’. With themes of mystery, horror, science fiction and real-life imagery racing through your ears, Cliff and Ivy have proven that ‘Equilux’ is one intriguing concept. With an overload of styles & influences hitting you all at once, Cliff and Ivy refuse to be categorized as some generic band of Today.

https://soundcloud.com/cliff-and-ivy

Original to the bone, Cliff and Ivy have come up with an album that shows signs of: goth, rock, pop, dance, industrial synth, electronic, EBM (Electronic Body Music), punk, metal, dark wave and no wave. This fierce group is pretty much a smorgasbord of various musical elements & sounds that will blow your mind! The “Cold as Ice” band is made up of six talented members: Ivy Silence on lead vocals, John Scott on synthesizer and piano (synth), Scott Feris on guitar, Stephanie Ward on backing vocals, CliffMonk on bass and Don Bolles on drums. The group has been compared to the likes of: The Prodigy, Killing Joke, Ministry and Siouxsie and the Banshees just to name a few. And they have even been referred to as “the evil B-52’s”!

Just as “The Red Queen” controls everything in “The Hive” from the movie “Resident Evil”, Cliff and Ivy are buzzing with excitement and ready to grab the bull by the horns! The 12-track recording plays along like some scary, twisted tale that may not have such a happy ending. Playing up the doom ‘n’ gloom card quite well on ‘Equilux’, Cliff and Ivy urge listeners to realize that everything is not so peachy keen today. One will hear Ivy Silence hypnotize the crowd with her dark ‘n’ direct lyrics that will speak out to the masses. Ivy’s lyrics appear to be quite poetic in form as she really digs deep to come up with some imaginative rhyme schemes. But the sunshine does peek out and roses do bloom from time to time on ‘Equilux’ like on track three, “Get Up”, where they actually give you a danceable Pop/Retro vibe mixed with some industrial sound. I’d even go so far as to say that this song could potentially be used for motivating oneself for exercise purposes. And who knows maybe even Richard Simmons himself would be fond of the track so “Get Up” people and move those buns! The listener will also hear very nice vocal harmonies thrown into the mix and perfect examples of this would be found on the songs “The Development of Democracy” & “Superclass”.

‘Lost Your Soul”:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jo6838z51X0

Cliff and Ivy have created a futuristic monster full of wicked beats and ridiculously creative oddities that will baffle your senses. I have to say that I am quite impressed with the efforts put forth toward the making of the new album but I do feel that Cliff and Ivy have a lot more to offer. ‘Equilux’ is one unique piece of material that will surprise many as Ivy & company look to hush up the critics. One last thing I’d like to add is maybe for the next project Cliff and Ivy can give me some Nine Inch Nails meets Skrillex meets Crystal Method, which would make for one huge monstrosity of audio. Cliff and Ivy deliver an explosion of sound that is like no other, so can’t wait to see where they take it next! - Skope Magazine


Interview posted on Skope Magazine
Full interview available at link. First question:

Skope: At what stage in life did music become more than a hobby?
Cliff and I met when we were teenagers, at a Clash concert. At that point we decided we needed to do music and be a band. We decided to take our art seriously and have fun sharing it with the world. This was 25 years ago now! Since then we have done plenty of punk, dance, art, performance art, and film. - Skope magazine


Hi Cliff and Ivy, how are you today?
We are doing great and keeping busy. Thanks for the chance to have an interview!

Can you Give me a brief history of the band, including your past incarnations?
It’s the two of us, Cliff Monk and Ivy Silence. We got the opportunity to go to L.A. and work with producer Ashley Witt, who does arrangements for films and has worked with many other bands, including Fleetwood Mac, No Doubt, U2, John Densmore, and film work with Tim Burton, including work for Titanic and Mars Attacks. We connected with All Ears Music, a label and publisher for licensing. All Ears Music offered us an opportunity to be considered to provide music for films, videogames and TV. We’ve been working on this project for the last two years, writing and recording.

Before that, we took a break from our previous band, Parallax1, which we had for ten years. This was an art/industrial/metal band, which also toured. Parallax1 released 2 full CDs and one EP, and we were included in many compilations, including Invisible Records, Underground Inc. We did some remixes of Parallax1 and we were reviewed in Outburn Magazine. Parallax1 played North by Northwest in Portland in 1998.

Before Parallax1, we played in the experimental underground and garage rock scene in San Francisco, and New Jersey/NY/PA. In New Jersey we played as Lesser Koodoo, which came after our band called Moby Dick (whose demo was co-produced by William Tucker of Ministry, and Thrill Kill Kult). Before that, our first bands were part of the hardcore and punk scene in NJ and NY. We played at CBGBs and other clubs on the east coast in the 80s.

We also have a side project band called Bingo Swingers. It’s a jam band with Cliff on bass and Ivy on drums, Bytet on synth and different local musicians as they are available.

Your website describes your sound as electronic industrial goth with a cool experimental spoken word edge. Would you say you practice a form of music alchemy and if so who is the maestro in the duo?
Well this album turned out this way. It’s about the two of us and the duality we represent. We like to present contrasts within music and it has been this way all along. Often we are told that our music is simultaneously calming and exciting. In the journey to create this we experienced a lot of self discipline, shaped by our resources. We used it to create music, which we hope creates freedom of experience within the listener outside of the confines of one rigidly defined genre. Equilux means equal duration of light and dark.

We write songs as ourselves and aren't afraid to be informed by music that is outside of the goth/industrial genre. There is pop influence there and experimental poetry is a large undertaking itself. We try to respect the art in the music.

We don’t consider one of us over the other, we work together to make the best song we can. Sometimes we find ourselves challenged by it, but we build it up together. It comes from twenty years of making music together. These are all new songs to us and we rely on each other to bring our strengths to the band. One of us may take over while the other is strong in another area. For example, Ivy wrote all of the lyrics.

Can you tell me which instruments you each play in the band?
Sure. On the recording, Ivy played Steinway grand piano, synthesizer, antique pump organ, did some drum track programming, song arrangement and vocals. Cliff Monk played guitar, bass, and mando-guitar, did song arrangements and vocals. Ashley Witt provided drum tracking, song arrangement, recording, production, mixing, engineering, and some backing vocals. We co-produced with Ashley Witt.

In order to present this music live, we need a stage band. Our stage band includes great musicians from the Alaska scene and we are getting live shows going now. Our stage line up includes: Scott Feris (from TS Scream and Alaska Thunderfunk) on guitar; Bytet (who has played original goth/electronic as Bytet since the 90s and who was also in Parallax1) on synthesizer; Bryan Gonzales (from Robots Helping Clones) on drums (he is also an endorser for Silverfox percussion and a world class drummer); Stephanie Ward (from Bent Penny and Steph Infection) on backing vocals, and of course Cliff Monk on bass and Ivy on lead vocals.

You're originally from the East Coast, New York and New Jersey. What made you come to Anchorage and what keeps you here?
We originally moved here in 1993. We moved from New Jersey to California first. In NJ we lived in a ghetto warehouse space left to us by Martin Atkins who started his industrial label Invisible Records there. We then moved to the East Bay in California. We lived in a dangerous neighborhood there, in a warehouse. The band Flipper were our neighbors. We had family members living in Alaska. In Alaska we liked the beautiful nature experience and we continue to appreciate phenomena such as the Northern Lights. The people here are nice, for the most part. There is - The Anchorage Observer


CLIFF & IVY - “EQUILUX”
By Missie Tong
When I sit down to review an album, I listen to each song
and take notes on what I am feeling and thinking about as
I am listening to the song. When I am done, I look over
my notes on each song and try to summarize everything
into a review. For this album, every song had the words
“upbeat”, “energetic”, “dance driven” and “melodic
synthesizers”. This whole album is exactly that….upbeat
and energetic!! Every song had me dancing in my chair
while trying to take legible notes…hard to write when
bouncing around in your chair!! The song Get Up inspired
me to want to get up and do aerobics!! It takes a lot to
even get me to think about doing any kind of exercise so
that says a lot about that song! I also loved the lyrics to
this song…”Shut the fuck up!” …LOVE IT!!!
Speaking of lyrics, I wasn’t sure what to think of the whole
speaking instead of singing but after a few songs I began
to realize that it is a very effective method of getting the
message of your music out to the world. Music is very
powerful and when combined with the spoken word, it
is undeniably one of the most power delivery systems of
your idea.
I gave Cliff & Ivy’s Equilux a rating of 5 skulls out of 5 skulls.
This album is a real blood pumper. If I had to compare
this album to anything out there that I have listened to
before, I would say that if Madonna “Vogue” had a 3-way
with W.A.S.P. “KFD” and any Marilyn Manson, this album
would be the failed abortion that grew up and came back
to kick everyone's ass.... meaning that this is a real get up
and move your ass pumped up on speed dance till you
collapse then get up and do it again album...If you are
having a bad day or a day where you are feeling a little
lethargic, listen to any track on this album and you will be
feeling like you can conquer the world in no time!
Dark Beauty Magazine #15 http://www.darkbeautymag.com/
Cliff and Ivy
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/CliffandIvy
Twitter: @CliffandIvy
Bandcamp: http://cliffandivy.bandcamp.com/
Reverbnation: http://www.reverbnation.com/cliffandivy
Soundcloud: http://soundcloud.com/cliff-and-ivy
Tumblr: http://cliffandivy.tumblr.com/
Band page: http://cliffandivy.com
To get merchandise: http://cliffandivy.bigcartel.com/
on iTunes
on Amazon
- Dark Beauty Magazine. Missie Tong, music reviewer


"I don't review many electronic duos, but this co-ed one is mega fun. And for Seward's Folly's sake they're from Alaska, which has more oil barrels than people (722,718 hearty cold souls for 586,412 square miles), so good for them- here's a better use of Alaska Permanent Fund dough then getting drunk! Expecting something po-faced- their bio correctly promises darkwave/goth/industrial- there's cool dance-blip cheer in the ska-ish "My Medication", which is what Blur's "Girls and Boys" would have been if it were more Mute Records and less Duran Duran. The harder "Get Up" is what Ivy Silence's synths are for- to menace- as quick, clashing industrial rhythms brazenly invite you to ... get up! Meanwhile Cliff Monk's guitars ("Superclass") are as frozen as the Barrow tundra. After Sarah Palin's spectacle, many forgot Alaska's Northern Exposure peculiarities. These hectic, futuristic rump-shaking folks help. "
- Jack Rabid, The Big Takeover Issue #71 (Nov 30, 2012)

- Big Takeover Magazine, Jack Rabid, ed


Cliff and Ivy are included in the Big Takeover Radio Show January 26, 2016 - Jack Rabid, The Big Takeover


Earth Spits Fire is the chosen track. - The Big Takeover Magazine


Alaska goths (it's always fun to write that) shake things up a tad on their latest semi annual single. Where new Blood old World seemed to try a Cure Pornography vibe, this is more of an angry loony-bin creepy post-punk vibe finished with tinkling guitars out of a b movie horror flick (Plan 9 from Outer Space). Ivy Silence's equally eerie matter of fact chanting has me thinking Alice Bag on an ireful day. Maybe this is a nonfiction movie soundtrack - a gummy witches' incantation on the endless fires burning uncontrolled on their half of our continent this year? From the chilly-mad background piano to the prominent tribal drums, and those scary guitar lines up like a spider on your neck, Cliff nad Ivy spit psycho flames. - The Big Takeover Magazine Issue 77 (print issue) - Jack Rabid's reviews


CLIFF AND IVY – DEATHMASK DEVOTION
Growing in stature these past few years our deadly duo offer something particularly interesting here, with three of the four songs being torrid torpedoes.
The darkly punk vibrancy of 'Exhibit' starts in atmospheric gloom before swinging into action with a scintillating pulse, slithering vocals traversing the melodic ascent, bubbling bass accompanying the high, restless guitar set against sturdy drums. ‘Ohm’ tumbles deeper, the same catchy vocal yearning gliding coquettishly across the spaces, then nobly back out of some sweet guitar mangling.
Recorded in Alaska and LA this again boasts the production and involvement of Paul Roessler as they develop their sound and easy impact. Bruised and battering, ‘Velocity Drift’ has as much style as it has guile, a more natural vocal presence and offers a different feel, bass buzzbombs and laconic confidence oozing out of it. ‘Otherness’ lives up to its name with some rhythmical tinkering and deflated vocals drifting. Lacking the immediacy of the other tracks it seems like an interloper from another record, but it’s certainly interesting.
There is a limited edition CD available if you’re quick.
https://cliffandivy.bandcamp.com/album/deathmask-devotion
https://www.facebook.com/CliffandIvy
https://twitter.com/CliffandIvy
https://www.reverbnation.com/cliffandivy
https://cliffandivy.com/ - Mick Mercer


Discography

DEATHMASK DEVOTION rel May 7, 2019

Alaska’s only goth band Cliff and Ivy announce the release of their new EP Deathmask Devotion
Alaskan gothrock duo Cliff and Ivy go straight for your dark heart with Deathmask Devotion, their newest EP. Featuring sonic “torrid torpedoes” (Mick Mercer, May 2019) this goth, dark punk and experimental EP will make you a devoted soul of the midnight sun. Out May 7 2019, self released on House of Extreme Darkness.

AMERICAN SAINTS rel Oct 2, 2018

Punk tribute (cover) album - 8 songs - featuring the music of Iggy and the Stooges, Patti Smith, Christian Death, The Screamers, Germs, The Misfits, and the Ramones.  

Collaborators: with Rikk Agnew (Christian Death, 45 Grave, Adolescents, DI, Gitane Demone Quartet), Paul Roessler (Screamers, GDQ), Sky Lee Vague (A Bleeding Sky), and PJ Franco (The Rocketz). Recorded at Kitten Robot Studio in Los Angeles, produced and mastered by Paul Roessler. 

SPIRIT ROOM rel Oct 3, 2017

Collaborators: with Rikk Agnew (Christian Death, 45 Grave, Adolescents, DI, Gitane Demone Quartet), Gitane Demone (Christian Death, GDQ), Paul Roessler (Screamers, GDQ), Deb Venom (GDQ, Spirit Before a Fall) and Sky Lee Vague (SBAF). Spirit Room recorded at Kitten Robot Studio in Los Angeles, produced and mastered by Paul Roessler.       

American Post-Gothic You Should Know Compilation, Post-Punk Records December 2017

Seven Veils in Transylvania Compilation, Do What Thou Wilt Records, September 2017

Cliff and Ivy LIVE in the City of Lost Angels, live album, released July 2017

La Danse Macabre #2, At Sea Compilation, At Sea Records June 2017

33 Goth Bands You Should Know Compilation, Post-Punk Records Oskar Terramortis Volume 4 October 2016

CXI111 full length album released Oct 11 2016

Collaborators: Rikk Agnew (Christian Death, 45 Grave, Adolescents, DI, Gitane Demone Quartet), Gitane Demone (Christian Death, GDQ), Paul Roessler (Screamers, GDQ), Deb Venom (GDQ, Spirit Before a Fall) and Sky Lee Vague (SBAF). Recorded at Kitten Robot Studio in Los Angeles, produced and mastered by Paul Roessler.       

Reincarnation, single released Aug 8, 2016 from album CXI 111 out Oct 11, 2016

Begin Again, gothic holiday single, released December 2015  

Earth Spits Fire/Antitoxin Single release, October 2015 (from Blackflower Breakdown LP scheduled for June 2016)

Music From MacBeth 17 Track original soundtrack to Shakespeare's Macbeth as performed at Cyrano's Theater, directed by David Edgecombe, May 2015 

New Blood Old World 5 Track EP produced by Peter Ratner, House of Extreme Darkness, April 2015 

Included in For the Bats Volumes 1, 2, and 3 International Goth Compilation, benefit for Bat rescue organizations worldwide www.forthebats.bandcamp.com   

Springtide of Pure Reason, 5 track EP produced by KRAMER (Butthole Surfers, Low), House of Extreme Darkness April 2014 - with Don Bolles (45 Grave, Ariel Pink) on drums

Equilux, 12 tracks on All Ears Music(label for digital release)








Photos

Bio

Cliff and Ivy are Alaska’s goth duo. With a solid background in punk and metal, they bring a traditional goth/deathrock sound into a new world. Theatrical and poetic, their music, live shows and art speak to dark hearts everywhere. “If the world is going to hell, we need music like this!” – Jack Rabid, The Big Takeover Magazine, #81

Inspired by art, punk, hardcore, old school goth and EBM, horror movies, no wave, industrial music, tribal music, current events and unwritten history,  they have been compared to Killing Joke, Ministry, Siouxsie and the Banshees, The Cure, and Dead Can Dance.






Band Members