Mephisto Walz

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For Franz Liszt's piano compositions, see Mephisto Waltzes. For the 1971 film, see The Mephisto Waltz (film).
Mephisto Walz
Origin United States
Genres Gothic Rock
Years active 1985–present
Labels Alice In..., Cleopatra, The Fossil Dungeon
Members Barry Galvin
Sara Reid
Past members Johan Schumann
Davud Glass
William Faith
Steven Greene
Christine Leonard

Mephisto Walz are an American gothic rock band formed in 1985. The band's discography includes many full-length albums spanning nearly three decades, through Cleopatra Records and other labels.


Mephisto Walz was formed by Barry Galvin, in 1985, following his departure from the influential deathrock band, Christian Death.

The 1986 Christian Death LP Atrocities featured Barry Galvin (guitar), Johann Schumann (bass), and David Glass (drums), all of whom would become the core lineup of the first incarnation of Mephisto Waltz (original spelling with a "T" in Waltz), following an internal conflict with Christian Death frontman Valor, resulting in the departure of Barry Galvin from the band. Atrocities included several tracks composed by Galvin which would later become standard Mephisto Waltz repertoire, notably "Tales of Innocence", "Strapping Me Down", and "Silent Thunder".

The name Mephisto Waltz was derived from the four Mephisto Waltzes by Hungarian composer Franz Liszt, and also partly provoked by the 4th track of Atrocities "The Danzig Waltz". The first incarnation of Mephisto Waltz continued from 1986 with original members Galvin, Schumann, and Arndt (drums), plus the addition of a German vocalist Jörq until 1989.

In 1990 after a brief interim and extended stay in Germany, Barry Galvin returned to California and began the process of reactivating the project with a new lineup, including William Coulter (later renamed William Faith) on bass, Steven Greene (later renamed Steven Grey) on drums, and William's former schoolmate Christine Leonard (later renamed Christianna) on vocals. forming the core lineup of the second incarnation of the band, eventually adding other temporary members, including Japanese guitarist Nariki.

This lineup would last until after the release of Crocosmia in 1992 and subsequent tour of Germany later that year to promote the album. Upon returning to California internal tensions would lead to complete disintegration, and the permanent departure of William Coulter and Steven Greene from the band. William Coulter and Steven Greene would together spend 1993 supporting other bands as rhythm section, including Shadow Project, and Andi Sexgang. William Coulter eventually met Monica Richards during a Shadow Project tour, and together formed Faith and the Muse the following year.

Galvin then reunited with former members Johan Schumann and David Glass in a renamed Mephisto Walz, dropping the "T" from Waltz. primarily as studio session players and tour members.

The third incarnation of the band evolved from 2003 with Barry Galvin adding vocals to his repertoire with Sara Reid on "IIIrd Incarnation", and Myriam Galvin on "New Apostles".

Galvin's distinct wall of chorus/delay-effected guitar sound makes Mephisto Walz instantly identifiable amongst other pioneers of deathrock.


Albums & EP[edit]

  • 1992: Crocosmia (Compilation)
  • 1992: As Apostles Forget (EP)
  • 1993: Terra Regina
  • 1994: The Eternal Deep
  • 1995: Thalia
  • 1995: Mosaique (Compilation)
  • 1998: Immersion
  • 2000: Early Recordings 1985–1988 (Compilation)
  • 2004: Insidious
  • 2011: IIIrd Incarnation
  • 2013: New Apostles

Exclusive tracks appearing on compilations[edit]

  • Gothik: Music from the Dark Side – "Mephisto Walz"
  • Gothic Erotica – "Israel"
  • Dancing on Your Grave – "Facade"
  • Künstler Zum 13. Wave-Gotik-Treffen – "Before These Crimes"
  • Sonic Seducer – Cold Hands Seduction Vol. 39 – "One Day Less"
  • Strobe Lights Vol. 2 – "Hunter's Trail (Strobe Light Mix)"
  • Kaliffornian Deathrock – "Eternal Deep"
  • Virgin Voices - "Skin" (Madonna cover)
  • Gothic Daydreams - "One Less Day"

External links[edit]