Vision Video’s Official Bio
In 2021 Vision Video released their debut LP, Inked in Red, which told the story of lead singer Dusty Gannon (aka TikTok’s “Goth Dad”) and the darkness he saw as a soldier in Afghanistan. This story continues with 2022’s Haunted Hours, which explores Dusty’s experience as a firefighter and paramedic during one of the darkest times in recent history. Working on the frontlines of deadly pandemic immediately after leaving the horrors of war transformed Dusty’s songwriting resulting in a more accessible album as the subject matter has touched us all.
Not content to just tell his own story, Dusty draws from the experiences of Vision Video’s new legion of fans, or “Baby Bats”, as they are known in TikTok circles. This new, empathetic approach to writing is fully realized in the title track “Haunted Hours” which channels the true story of a fan’s husband’s untimely passing that was transformed into arguably the most accessible, yet meaningful song the band has written. Dusty reflected on this track “I wanted to capture the ache of loss, the weight of memory and the appreciation of memory all at once.” This sentiment is realized through the melody of an incredibly catchy chorus that captures loss wrapped in beauty.
The story of Haunted Hours would be incomplete without a discussion of the Goth Dad phenomenon. After experiencing so much pain and suffering first-hand, Dusty threw himself into a character he created on social media to help others deal with their pain, be it the loss we all share from the pandemic, or accepting yourself for who you truly are no matter what other people think. This fervent leverage of the time lockdown provided has been the story of Vision Video, the band used this opportunity to create, build a following, and reach out to the world, letting them know they are not alone. The message resonated, leading to over 500k followers across social media platforms. Goth Dad is now part of the band, and the love and support provided by the Baby Bats has let the band flourish. Vision Video made a tough decision to not sign to a label and control their own destiny. The Baby Bats have provided the support to make an independent Vision Video successful, allowing them to make another record on their own terms, and the band is forever grateful.
Vision Video’s Music
Growing up, I was one of those odd metal-head/goth kids. You know, the kids who wore the gigantic Tripp pants with some sort of metal band shirt. I think they are now referred to as “mall goths.”
I loved the goth aesthetic and still do to this day. But, for some reason, music that would be considered “goth” didn’t really resonate with me. Bands like The Cure, The Smiths, Bauhaus, Joy Division, and Siouxsie and the Banshees didn’t speak to my teenage angst the way metal did. My feelings around this time were better expressed through fast guitars, bombastic drumming, and screaming vocals.
As I got older, I opened up to more goth music as my horizons expanded a bit. Admittedly, I’m still not the biggest fan of goth music, as a whole, but I definitely like way more of it than I used to. I find myself very frequently revisiting bands like The Cure and The Smiths (even though Morrissey sucks!) as well as more modern bands like Drab Majesty.
Then, in 2019, I find myself spending a lot of time on the new social platform TikTok. As the algorithm is getting a better understanding of my personal interests, this interesting character begins to appear in my For You feed. A character known as Goth Dad.
Every time this character shows up in my feed, I find myself smiling at his humorous mid-western-accented slogan “Well hi there, Baby Bat. It’s your Goth Dad” and his reassuring messages that everything is going to be okay. This became especially true as I myself became a new dad at the very beginning of the global pandemic so having a positive voice of any kind was incredibly helpful.
The more I got to know Goth Dad (Dusty Gannon) the more I started to notice the music he used in his videos. Turns out, it was his own band, Vision Video. I quickly decided to check them out on Spotify and fell in love instantly. Not too long after that, I purchased a recent pressing of their first album, Inked in Red, on vinyl which I highly recommend adding to your collection, if you can.
Much like Drab Majesty, Vision Video takes the goth style of the predecessor and put their own modern flair to the style. Musically, there is an ambient/atmospheric quality that sets a dark and dreamy stage for Dusty’s lyrics. Lyrically, Dusty often speaks about his life experiences, including being a military veteran and a first responder (thank you for your service, Dusty!) often times exploring the more horrific aspects of war and the emotional impacts it has on those involved.
While Vision Videos follows that dark and whimsical quality you would expect from goth music there is also an upbeat quality. Something you could easily find yourself dancing to. This is especially true with songs like Inked in Red, In My Side, Cruelty Commodity, Transmission, and Comfort in the Grave.
If you are a fan of 80s goth music, especially bands like The Cure, The Smiths, and Joy Division I highly recommend checking out Vision Video. Their music does an incredible job of honoring its influences while putting a new spin on the genre. It’s especially good with spooky season right around the corner.
Vision Video’s Most Recent Release
In October 2022, Vision Video released their sophomore album Haunted Hours. This album definitely took what made Inked in Red special and built upon that foundation.
Taking a slightly more somber tone than its predecessor, Haunted Hours is very clearly a product of the pandemic and what Dusty experienced as a first responder. Not only are there themes of death throughout the record but also frustration at the pointlessness that caused that death. You can hear the pain in Dusty’s voice caused by some of the things he had to deal with during this time.
Where to Follow Vision Video and What are They Up to?
Lucky for all of us, Vision Video just completed a very successful tour of the US and is getting back in the studio to record some new tunes!
Make sure to go check out their site for future updates and while you’re there, grab some merch!
All photos in this article are credited to Alexa Jae Photography