Friday, December 28, 2012

Psyche Corporation 4th album complete!




From the desk of the Shadow Queen:

Guess who just finished recording the last song of the 4th Psyche Corporation album??? Next step: mastering whatever hasn't been mastered yet and then zomg, you'll actually be able to have album 4! Which I still need to name..

psst... it's not the final master, but.... Surprise!

final song for the 4th album:

https://soundcloud.com/psychecorp/strange-machine

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Ikkicon schedule this Saturday for Psyche Corp





SATURDAY
11:00 - 12:00 Learn to Poi Meetup 1
4:30 - 5:30 Learn to Poi Meetup 1
8:00 - 9:00 Solo Speaking Panel Room 415
9:30 - 10:00 Setup Salon J-Main Events
10:00 - 11:00 Performance Salon J-Main Events



Monday, December 10, 2012

I'm British via The Steampunk Workshop

Jake Von Slatt presents a brief, but interesting article about Professor Elemental's latest album on The Steampunk Workshop


I'm British

Friday, December 7, 2012

Steampunk Airship Crew Building via Doc Fantastique

This is a serious, yet fun article that is well worth reading about one group's experiences coming together as a Steampunk Airship Crew!

Airship Building part II

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Online Steampunk Holiday Shopping via Steampunk Tribune

The Steampunk Tribune has an excellent article about the best places to do online holiday shopping for that special Steampunk, Lady, Steampunk gentleman, or event eh all around Steampunk Rogues in your life.    (""You could use a few more scoundrels in your life")

The-best-26-online-stores-for-steampunk

Friday, November 30, 2012

Steampunk Canada Helping Share Steampunk Artists and Authors With the World!


Call out to Steampunk Canada Artists and Authors

Show Details
Hello Dear Members,
If you have not yet seen the current front page, I am on a search for all of our fabulous Canadian artists and authors.  Whatever your medium is - paint, photography, film or the written word, I want to share your talent with the world.  I need very little, just a word or two about yourself and your artwork, what inspires you, a link to your site if you have one, and a photo or two.  Everything should be sent to me at questions@steampunkcanada.ca by December 22nd.
As well, we have been very busy and there are a number of reviews and even a beta key giveaway for City of Steam.  Come on by and have a look!

Cheers,

Lee Ann Farruga
STEAMPUNK CANADA

http://www.steampunkcanada.ca/

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Psyche Corporation Performing at Ikkicon in Texas!!!




Great News!

It is now confirmed that the Shadow Queen, Psyche Chimere, evil genius and beautiful, dancing, songbird of Psyche Corporation, will indeed be performing this year at one of the largest anime conventions going, Ikkicon in Austin, Texas.  She will be bringing her operatic Dark Steampunk Victorian dystopian Science fiction type fairy tales to the stage (not to mention her lovely dancing as she perform!) as we ring in the new year!  Mark your calendars!  Fire up your steam powered broom sticks!  light the coal oil burners on your airships and start heading for Austin, Texas for this New Year's Eve bash that is Ikkicon!  Don't forget... the city motto of Austin, Texas is "Keep Austin Wierd!"  Just our kind of place!



Saturday, September 15, 2012

Doc Fantastique Assists Kickstarters For Steampunks


Steamstock Festival Organizer Comments on Open Letter (via http://doctorfantastiques.com)
I had a chance to chat with Brian Gardner, organizer of the upcoming Steamstock Festival, regarding the recent ‘Open Letter’ that’s been making it around the world of all things Steam and also Punk. At the end, Brian also shared a nice little bit of news that attendees of Steamstock will be very…

Friday, September 7, 2012

SteamStock Organizer Discusses Conflicts and Definitions via Doc Fantastique

Steamstock Festival Organizer Comments on Open Letter (via http://doctorfantastiques.com)

I had a chance to chat with Brian Gardner, organizer of the upcoming Steamstock Festival, regarding the recent ‘Open Letter’ that’s been making it around the world of all things Steam and also Punk. At the end, Brian also shared a nice little bit of news that attendees of Steamstock will be very…

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

13 Steampunk Romances in Corsets and Clockwork


Review: Corsets and Clockwork (via http://doctorfantastiques.com)

I’m always a little hesitant in picking up any book blazoned with the words ‘Steampunk romance’, but I decided to put aside my reservations and pick up the book Corsets and Clockwork, edited by Trish Telep,  from the teen section of the library. I wasn’t familiar with the editor, or any of…

Friday, August 31, 2012

Con-templations via Doc Fantastique

Starting Out Steampunk — Con-templations (via http://doctorfantastiques.com)

In the last installment of Starting Out Steampunk, I spoke about different kinds of events and mentioned conventions.  Conventions are large gatherings of like-minded individuals who are there to discuss and celebrate an idea.  Idea, here, can be loosely defined with something as broad as Science…

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Friday, August 24, 2012

Starting Out Steampunk via Doc Fantastique

Starting Out Steampunk – All Dressed Up and Where to Go? (via http://doctorfantastiques.com)

So where does one actually go to be Steampunk? When most folks get into the sub-culture that we’ve all come to know and love they first notice the aesthetic.  You see the amazing outfits and the mind-blowing props, the dashing hats and the fancy corsets, the bee jewelry and the boots that are the…

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Review - Marvels of Science and Steampunk


Marvels of Science and Steampunk review (via G*M*S Magazine)

By Paco Garcia Jaen Victoriana has become a darling of mine of recent. From believing it was a system that was hard to be taken seriously, I’ve gone to actually love it and regard it as close in richness (if not richer) than Call of Cthulhu. Yep, feel free to disagree. I won’t change my mind. Get…

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Happy Birthday Leon Theremin

Thanks to

Michael Lunapiena
, Lex Machina, and Moog Music Inc. for brigning the story of this physicist and musical inventor to my attention.  A fascinating story from the history books for my Steampunk friends and musicians everywhere.
http://www.moogmusic.com/news/happy-birthday-leon-theremin

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Mainsteaming Steampunk


Mainstream Steampunk (via http://doctorfantastiques.com)

Recently, there have been people talking about the possibility of Steampunk going “mainstream”, and what it will mean for the subculture, both aesthetically and intellectually. More importantly, there is a loud part of the subculture (though not necessarily large) that does not want our subculture…

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Deliah Dawson - Steampunk Paranormal Romance Author Interview


Interview: Delilah S. Dawson (via http://doctorfantastiques.com)

Hello, lovely readers! I’m delighted to begin writing for Doc’s, and figured what better way to share my enthusiasm than by having a friend help me with my inaugural post! I can’t think of many, unless there were cake and maybe peacocks (they’re pretty; so sue me). Lucky for me (and you!) the…

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Repost of : the Steampunk guide to Airships via Doc Fantastique


The Steampunk Guide to Airships (via http://doctorfantastiques.com)
Airships are a familiar technology in the steampunk genre. Aerostat (lighter-than-air) in design, they differ from the simple hot air balloon in their ability to be steered using propellers and rudders. Today, airships have lost out to the speed, manoeuvrability and comparative safety of the airplane…

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Introduce a Song a Day by Frenchy and the Punk


The following was a facebook post from my friends Frenchy and the Punk.  I couldn't find any way to link to that post, so I'm copying it here to show you what lovely things they are offering:

July 30 Day 11 of our "introduce a song a day" from the 'Hey Hey Cabaret' CD
Track 11 'Make It Happen'
Flapper Punk! This is one of the songs Scott likes to call his Django meets Johnny rhythm, as in Reinhardt and Ramone, two of his guitar inspirations. On a summer's day in 2011, I sat outside with paper and pencil in hand to begin working on lyric ideas for a song we were asked to write for a possible media placement. Looking up at the forget-me-not sky there wasn't a cloud in sight. I had the thought "it's a cloudless sky" which then sparked the phrase, "why'd we let the rain chase our cloudless skies away" and the song flowed from that idea. Like our motif of the Batfrog it's about transformation and new beginnings. It's definitely a 'go for it' kind of song. Scott also did the bass and drums on this track. Scott's first instrument was bass guitar back when he played in punk bands in the '80s and '90s... his band Outpatients is mentioned in the 'American Hardcore' movie released in 2006 and his band Deep Wound is part of the soundtrack of All Ages-Boston Hardcore The Film that was just released this year.
Thanks for reading. Enjoy!
Although this is the last track on the CD, there was supposed to be a 12th track. So tomorrow, Day 12 will be missing track day!

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Nihon NY Interviews Voltaire About Japanese Influence In His Work



Not everyone realizes just how much Japanese Culture and art has influenced Voltaire's fillms, art, comics, toys, and many other aspects of the wonderful madness that is Voltaire.  He started very young as a stop motion animator, for his own pleasure, but grew into a love of similar art forms and many themes and approaches that he discovered in Japan.  He based his Graphic Novels largely on Japanese themes, art, and anime with a specific director as a role model.  Take a look at this interview to learn about this facinating side of the musician and artist.


Sunday, July 29, 2012

Voltaire Does Dallas




Voltaire… Even the name conjures up figures of the past during the period of the “Enlightenment” that were both famous and infamous for their efforts to tear down accepted dogma and replace it with absolute freedom to question everything including calling on God directly to prove his own worth.  Well, this Voltaire doesn’t wear a powdered wig or fine linens and comes off more like the Devil’s PR man, or maybe a devilishly charming used car salesman with a “hell” of a sense of humor, but he is incredibly entertaining whatever century you think he comes from.  Voltaire is a favorite at many conventions, especially those linked with Steampunk, Goth Culture, or pretty much anything counterculture or kinky, but he also does rather expansive musical tours (with the "skeletal Orchestra"), and really clever music videos.  He is a talented musician, but best known for his total sense of irreverent humor and the macabre in his lyrics, concepts, and general presentation in pretty much everything he does.

When  I learned he was going to be playing at “The Church” Goth Night at the Lizard Lounge in Dallas, Texas , which Voltaire refers to as “his home away from home”, I cleared my schedule, for that night at least.  I wasn’t going to miss this!  Voltaire is, in a word, utterly charming.  That, combined with his evil grin, while singing songs about  coupling with zombie prostitutes and how much he enjoys being “evil” certainly makes one do a double take on many different levels.  For a moment you start to believe maybe he is pretending to lie to make the lies seem more believable, but in the end, he just doesn’t feel very evil, so it all makes you laugh, and dance, and sing a long with the music!  What a mind F___!

Voltaire came on almost an hour late, just like the last show of his I went to, but I observed the crowd carefully, and instead of acting annoyed about it, their excitement just seemed to build.  He played and sang most of his best known favorites as well as some fairly new material I hadn’t heard before, and at one point, pretended (or not-who knows) to forget the lyrics and had the audience to sing part of one song, which most of them knew the words to, while he remembered where he was in that piece.  It all seemed like hanging out with your favorite local demon.  Really.  Utterly charming.

Keep in mind, the only demons I have ever encountered, were not at all charming, and rest assured, we didn’t do much hanging out together.  In fact it always got quite ugly.  That’s why this whole bizarre act seems so surreal and fascinating!

It was easy to tell who his long time fans were, as opposed to the newcomers to his personal brand of madness, and not just because they could remember the lyrics to some songs better than the performer, but because the items that put a touch of shock or at least surprise on the faces of a few audience members (even in a goth club believe it or not!) simply delighted the others.  He also performed some songs from his new album BiTrektual which pokes fun at Star Wars, Star Trek, and other sci-fi topics with extreme irreverence.

At one point, I realized that while very few acts can keep the modern attention deficit, video game addicted Americans, focused without at least three performers or more on stage at all times, you totally forget that it’s just Voltaire and his guitar.  He fills the room so completely with his macabre sort of charm, that you just don’t need anyone else.  Maybe that’s why there was such a long line to get in for his show, and staff were concerned that their auditorium might not be large enough for his show at the Steampunk World’s Fair.

If you ever get a chance to see and hear this man (or whatever he is) perform, do like I did, clear your schedule, and make it happen!  This should go on your list of things to do before you die this time around.  You won’t regret it.  We all need a bit of the bizarre, the macabre, and the strange in our life.  If one removes all the mystery, life becomes sterile, and so… well… normal.  Ugh!  Voltaire helps to keep the magic of the mysterious, dark, and unfathomable still alive, so treat yourself to a bit of happy madness and go hear him perform.




Saturday, July 28, 2012

One Eyed Doll's "Dirty" Album Concert and Release Party : A Review



One Eyed Doll finally achieved a lifelong dream with this album "Dirty", which is primarily being released as an truly original 33 rpm vinyl record, but also has a digitally mastered CD version for those fans not fortunate enough to have traditional equipment to play vinyl today. T hey produced an excellent quality, old style recording on vinyl, done in the true fashion of the greats of old!  As such, they felt a really big event was needed to celebrate this as well as to celebrate their return to performing a bit more often again in their beloved Austin, Texas.  They have been on the road touring so much that their Austin fans haven't seen them much lately, which was a big change from such frequent local performances in the previous years.

The venue selected was Club 606, which is a small live show club named after it's own street address on 7th street in the music district of downtown Austin.  It's an interesting bare bones, concrete and steel club decorated with blacklights, local performer posters,  a nice bar, and colorful people.  The stage is somewhat small, but adequate for smaller bands, and the smoke machine was more than enough for the size of the club.  The smoke was primarily used to highlight an excellent laser light display that showed throughout the concert.  In short, many aspects of the club and setting were like walking into an unusually well equipped live show house during the peak days of hard rock when vinyl was still king!

The show started with a band called Brother's Grymm featuring some decent guitar riffs and a hard rock sound with the singer delivering lyrics rap style.  After that came on a band called Sinsored who did more Industrial type screaming out the lyrics.  Finally, what we had been waiting for, One Eyed Doll' Junior came on stage and from out of the darkness, a lone guitar began to play.

This dramatic off stage guitar solo continued until finally Kimberly burst onto the stage to an enthusiastic crowd partway through the number while still playing the whole time.  The set list was open to vote by fans, (which happened in advance online) as a gift to them after so long on the road.  As such it actually had more classic songs than the new material, but with a 3 hour show there was plenty of time for both.  Kim told the fans that they planned to play until they dropped, and they very nearly did.  It was obvious that Kim and Junior played their hearts out at every number.  After the first hour, maybe two, Kim would often be panting for breath (the smoke machine made it hard to breathe and she rocks with extreme athletic prowess!) sipping water, and asking fans what they wanted to hear next as they had already exhausted the set list.

In several songs, fans were brought on stage to act out various roles in the song, complete with toy unicorn or dragon hobby horse, and other madness while Kim screamed out lyrics like the hardest of the hard in true metal form.  It is this extreme contrast shifting from a sweet sesame street like character to a heavy death metal queen at a split second notice that make One Eyed Doll shows so funny, so thrilling, and so utterly fascinating to watch and be a part of.

At one point Kim got some of the heavy metal fans got so excited they starting trying to create a mosh pit in the middle of the crowd.  The club wasn't big enough to make space for that without slamming into the majority of the fans who were not interested in moshing, especially since some of the fans present were under age including a couple of very young children.  Unfortunately the venue did not stop the moshers from slamming into other fans, so the fans got the little ones up out of the way, and dealt with the situation.  While some people left, most stayed and  formed a wall of elbows which eventually deterred the four overly testosteroned moshers.  This shows both, that One eyed Doll's stage shows really are true heavy metal and that her fans are an unusually tight knit, loyal, and fearless group willing to fend off anything to see them perform!

While the on stage style is very hard core metal rock, the albums tend to be very dark rock ballads that are incredibly beautiful musically and wonderfully strange and twisted in terms of lyrics.  On stage both come through as the lyrics are clearly just as strange and just as dark albeit harder to pick out when delivered in the heaviest of metal styles.  It is critical, though, that the stage shows have this blending of extremes.  Not only that, but many fans like that onstage mixture of extreme flavors, sweet with sour, and salty with bitter, (rather like a fine marguerita) as well or better than the albums.  As such, fans with good to professional grade cameras and video equipment were asked to attend and help put together a true live performance video, so that this gritty, hard, weird and wonderful live show experience can be made available to fans around the world even when One eyed doll can be with them in person   I, for one, am very much looking forward to seeing this when it is done.

After two and a half hours, Kim announced that they wanted to wrap up so there would be time for a longer than usual meet and greet after the show.  The usual, and trademark, mandatory encore went off a little too smoothly, with Austin fans.  You know.  The one that comes to one lucky victim selected, sort of at random from the audience to receive the privilege of Kim's goth-dominatrix literal slap to the face that is their trademark should the audience fail to be enthusiastic enough when pleading for an encore.

Aside from that, the overly enthusiastic moshers, and the smoke machine making it hard for the performer to sing (but made for spectacular light shows… really!), it was pretty much perfect show!  It was perfect, anyway, just exactly as it was, in that sweaty little bar, with all the smoke, the heavy emotions, and the tension, the crowd.  It was exactly what it was supposed to be to put you in just the right place and time for the very old school, hard core, Vinyl record album “Dirty” to debut!

I would like to close with where I started, by repeating the very brief, sleep deprived, but heartfelt thoughts I posted to my personal blog when I had just arrived home after a road trip with Paulo, the Dallas Ft Worth area street team leader which ran all morning, the day in Austin, and the road trip from 3 am to sunrise back from the show:

Near the very end, when it was mostly just a handful of street team members still waiting to see her (we let the other fans go ahead of us) , she [Kim Freeman] was finally overcome and had to take a few minutes alone to re-hydrate and get heat and dehydration related headache and nausea under control.  The fans expressed love and concern which was returned during that time, through the door of her green room.  She then came out as cheerful as ever to wish the last of us goodbye and sign anything needing autographs. 

 [In fact she even cracked jokes about it not being real “Rock N Roll” unless somebody pukes]  

The terms that come to mind for the entire event are fun, funny, intense, grueling, intimate, and deeply personal!  It was everything it was meant to be and perfectly matches the entire theme of the album it was designed to release.  




Friday, July 27, 2012

Steampunk Italia- an Interview


Interview with Steampunk Italia (via http://doctorfantastiques.com)

Steampunk is a global phenomenon.  The attention usually goes to the UK when it comes to European Steampunk, but sometimes it’s forgotten that there’s an entire continent involved as well.  There are several hot spots for the movement in Europe, and the fashionable and creative Italians are…

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Repost of: Hoist the Colors High via Doc Fantastique

Hoist the Colors High (via http://doctorfantastiques.com)

In recent months, I read an article by James Schafer and Kate Franklin of Parliament & Wake, entitled “Why Steampunk Still Matters.” Following an unrelated article I had written being picked up on the community Facebook page they co-administrate with others, Mr Schafer invited me to offer my thoughts…

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Voltaire Concert tonight in Dallas, Texas!



Headed down to "The Church" night at the Lizard Lounge in Dallas, Texas for the Voltaire concert tonight! "Singing death death death death devil devil evil evil songs"


Voltaire is one of the most popular, most fun, and most full of dark comedy of all the musical performers at Steampunk Events.  We are so pleased to have him here in Dallas tonight.  


It seems many Goths, Steampunks, Pagans, Witches, Vampyres, and Therians will be out tonight!


Friday, July 20, 2012

Psyche Corporation Donates Soundtrack to a J-Rock Fan Project





Radha BloodRose shared a link.
Yesterday near Irving

North American Revolution helped promote this birthday for project for Kamijo [lead singer and producer for Versailles Philharmonic Quintet - Visual Kei J-rock band from Tokyo] in cooperation with KamiSpanish and some independent fans. The [soundtrack] music is from a group I help promote, Psyche Corporation, used legally with their permission. I am a member of their Southern street team in the US. I hope you enjoy it! My deepest thanks to Psyche Chimere for permission to use her beautiful and exquisite music! We hope you enjoy it!

KAMIJO's Birthday Project 2012
www.youtube.com
Well, [Kamijo]  maybe this isn't all your fans in the world but it is a lot of people who want to wish you a happy birthday and we hope you have a great day! We love you!

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Asking the Right Questions About Steampunk


It all starts with asking the right questions (via http://doctorfantastiques.com)
“One does not simply define Steampunk.” -Captain Theo, Fortune’s Ember It seems like everyone is doing it lately. Writing, or making a panel, or in some other fashion, trying to define and explain what Steampunk is. What it means, what it stands for, what it includes. I have done it, as part…

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Repost of Social Justice Begins At Home via Doc Fantastique

“Social Justice begins at home” (via http://doctorfantastiques.com)

Perhaps no truer words have been uttered in the course of America’s history. What many may find surprising is that the quote taken as the title here is from none other than James Couzens, Treasurer of the Ford Motor Company in 1914. Certainly the era of the utterance held much in the way of promised…

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Aftermath of the Dirty Album Release Party and Concert




I am still sufficiently sleep deprived from our street team road trip down for the concert and back the same night, that this is going to be short, but to the point, with a more in depth review tomorrow of the One Eyed Doll concert and “Dirty” album release party (also Junior’s Birthday party).   What was most worth mentioning, was that unlike the very short 30 minute sets available as time slots that are often all that is available when One Eyed Doll is on tour, they performed and heavily interacted with the audience for a solid three hours.

At the very beginning, Kimberly announced her intention to perform until she dropped!  At one point it looked like she was going to truly play until she dropped, between the heat of the sold out venue, the extremely athletic style she performs in on stage, and the incredibly thick fog of the smoke machine which was being used to display the beautifully intense laser light show around her, but she finally stopped after three hours stating, that she wanted to make at least an hour available for the meet and greet.  She actually made it over an hour with fans, after nearly exhausting herself on stage, and spending an unusually generous amount of time with each her adoring fans from the Austin area.  They had not seen them as much as usual due to their incredibly grueling tour schedule with a large number of other fans over the last 18 months.

Near the very end, when it was mostly just a handful of street team members still waiting to see her (we let the other fans go ahead of us) , she was finally overcome and had to take a few minutes alone to re-hydrate and get heat and dehydration related headache and nausea under control.  The fans expressed love and concern which was returned during that time, through the door of her green room.  She then came out as cheerful as ever to wish the last of us goodbye and sign anything needing autographs.

The terms that come to mind for the entire event are fun, funny, intense, grueling, intimate, and deeply personal!  It was everything it was meant to be and perfectly matches the entire theme of the album it was designed to release.  More to follow!

Thursday, July 12, 2012

One Eyed Doll "Dirty" Album Release Party and Show



Radha and I have come to love this band so much we actually joined the street team for them.  Then our best friend in Canada joined the street team as well. .  Hey in the modern age of internet a professional Techno-Geek like him has no problem impacting the Southern American music scene from Canada.  Besides, One eyed Doll tours nationally on a a very regular basis, so location is almost irrelevant.  Radha and I are riding down with Paulo, the Dallas Area street team leader, after he picks up about 1000 copies of their new album for distribution that were pressed up here in our area, so we can take it to them in time for the release party, and then dress really wild to be in the performance video they are filming at the show!!!  Road Trip!!!

 Our Canadian friend Romeo first learned about this great band by reading the articles on this blog, Art of Steampunk.  Now he's hooked!  The albums are fabulous, and actually quite different than the stage show which is also fabulous.  On stage it is a hard rock, extreme metal show mixed liberally with extreme comedy.  On the albums, Kimberly's voice accompanied by Junior on instrumentals is so beautiful, I almost though I had put in the wrong album.  I mean really.  How many singers can scream out lyrics on stage, night after night, in thrash metal style, and then still have such a beautiful voice afterwards?  

Their latest music video "Envy" also included complex vocal patterns that I normally only encounter with unusually talented and complex singers like Shakira who blends Middle Eastern Sufi Devotional singing styles with Columbian vocals.  When I listened to the lyrics, though, I was quite clear, once again, that it had to be the right album.  No one gets as beautifully bizarre, and utterly mind bendingly strange as Kimberly when it comes to writing songs.  That, I suppose, is why we agreed to take a sudden road trip to Austin for this release party even though we will probably have to turn around drive back the same night.  Hmmm... is this a 5 hour energy drink kind of event or what?  

We should manage with 3 drivers, but you should know, that on the One eyed Doll Dallas Area Street Team, we mix some degree of safety and sanity with all the madness, so Paulo, our Dallas Area illustrious Street Team leader, lead illustriously by committing to give up alcohol that night as a sacrifice to the cause!  (only for Kim and Junior... right???)  That's right... our little contingent bringing down the last minute pressed new albums, agreed to give up alcohol for this one night to make sure we are safe to drive back after the party.  Remember kids..., We don't always go insane, but when we do, we go insane with One Eyed doll... so go insane responsibly!


 Here is what Junior has to say about it!:


Come to Austin this weekend for our Album Release Show!!! 

We'll be filming a DVD!

AND Playing a looong set of all your favorite songs in our home town! This is the show NOT to miss! ~Junior





Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Steampunk Assimilation in USA Today!

So has Steampunk gone the way of the Borg where it is simply assumed that "you will be assimilated... resistance is futile!" ???  No.  Don't worry.  We don't even want to assimilate everyone.  If they don't have a sense of humor and adventure, some trace of creative longings, at least a modest appreciation for original art, drama, or music, or can't at least have fun with it, we aren't even trying to invite them to the party.  Just the same, it is becoming pretty widely noticed and heavily sought after by commercial interests now.

OK, so ignore the Justin Beiber part of the title of this article and read it any way.  Besides Justin is supposed to be for young kids, so why get all worked up about him being kiddish anyway?  If you aren't his age, why should you be worrying about what he puts in his videos?

Besides Sugarland already beat him to it in terms of making a video where the steampunk was blatantly just randomly tossed in to try to steam up something lame for purely commercial purposes.  Just so you know, the Steampunk community is not really opposed to steampunking a music video if some effort is made to make the video actually focus on steampunk concepts rather than simply a mindless decoration of the set and a poor attempt at costuming while doing totally irrelevant, (and rather boring) music.  Boring and Steampunk just don't mix well.  Sorry.

The point of this fine article by USA Today is that Steampunk is infiltrating pretty much everything now!  Some people like that and some don't, but few are still fully in denial about it.  In true steampunk fashion though, if they don't like some aspect of a thing that has good parts in it, the steampunk inventors and crafters simply take it apart and rebuild it.  It seems they even did this with young Master Bieber's steampunk music video.  Your path to this world where we really can change whatever annoys us and turn it into amusing art in the process awaits below:



Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Steampunk Fashion Walk In Australia! Repost via Doc Fantastique

Steampunk Strides Fashionwalk (Bris, QLD, Aus) (via http://doctorfantastiques.com)

The Steampunk Strides Fashionwalk is an initiative of Alternate Empire Events and will be the Paris fashion week of the Steampunk Community! A night of well-mannered frivolity, where the Steam World and Modern day society meet! Come in your finest Steam-inspired dress and be entertained by a dynamic…

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Planned Undersea Hotel in Dubai!

OK, so is this futuristic or what?  Cyberpunk Heaven!!!  Dubai has really outdone themselves this time with fantasy hotels that look like UFO spacepads with under sea guest rooms!

Planned Undersea Hotel

Friday, July 6, 2012

Dark Beauty Magazine - Steampunk Edition

This very interesting Goth magazine about beauty, art, and fashion has an annual Steampunk edition that just came out.  This is definitely worth a look!

Dark Beauty Magazine -Steampunk edition

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

My Strange Slow Slide into One Eyed Doll-dom!



I met One Eyed Doll at Yulecon 2010 It was love at first... well... not sight exactly, though that was pretty nice and truly interesting too. How does one describe the experience of meeting someone rather like a Sesame Street character that suddenly turns into Rob Zombie doing thrash metal and back again at the touch of a switch operated by some insane, but very fun deity or some such somewhere??? I didn't see them perform again for quite a while until the tour 2012 with Orgy.

One Eyed Doll is based in Austin, Texas, but frequently tours with other bands through local cities, like Dallas, and all the way up the east Coast, West Coast, and pretty much all the in between as well.  In fact, they have toured twice this year and have a third one coming up soon.  They have actually played here in Dallas about every other month, and I try to make every show!

A good friend of mine on the East Coast was mentioning that one of her "wishlist" things to do when she came to visit Texas was to see One Eyed Doll. I told her how much I had enjoyed it as well, and that I would look up their next show. A couple of days later, I won two tickets at our local Goth Club to see Orgy just down the street. As it was on the same night as Panoptikon, when they play the really cool darkwave dance music, we didn't go until right before the show, but were amazed to find Kim screaming on stage as we walked in. I wanted to kick myself for not arriving sooner, as we missed most of their show, but to my amazement, she made even the merchandise purchasing experience almost more entertaining than the show!

Kim was in rare form that night and would hold a finger up in front of her, say "touch my finger!" then go catatonic. At least until you followed directions. When you touched her finger, she lit up like a Yule Tree, smiled really big and gave a warm enthusiastic hug. She then promptly sunk her teeth into whatever you wanted autographed. Literally! I actually went through the line twice, buying a lot more stuff the second time. That also gave me time to talk to Junior for a while, which is always a pleasure. We talked about music of course, and their new album coming out soon.

For the tour with Peelander Z, we came early and got right in front of the stage, but forgot our earplugs. A few days later, when my hearing returned (lol) my wife and I agreed that it seemed an even wilder show than at trees! Well they are coming back again for the third time (with Butcher Babies) in just a few months, so I offered to help promote them via internet, etc. which I do routinely for bands I really like. Somehow I found myself signing up for the street team this time. Life just keeps getting stranger, but I like it that way!

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Repost of Crackdown on Punks In Indonesia via the Christian Science Monitor


Crackdown on punks in Indonesia (via The Christian Science Monitor)
In his canary yellow t-shirt and skinny jeans Banu Prasdana looks like an ordinary Indonesian kid. But last year when he sported more than a dozen piercings and a Mohawk and wandered Banda Aceh's streets playing rock ballads on his guitar he had a canny ability to unnerve the local police, who considered…

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Deiselpunk VS Steampunk Part 2 via Dieselpunk blog



Here is the conclusion of this excellent 2 part article comparing Dieselpunk and Steampunk from the mind and insights of Larry Amyett, author and Dieselpunk scholar.

Dieselpunk VS Steampunk a Comparison part 2


Thursday, June 28, 2012

World's Largest Goth Festival via La Carmina & Huffington Post

You have to see this!  It's just a taste, an appetizer really, but it will get you interested enough for more articles about our dark cousins, the Goth Culture.  No, they are not Steampunk, but the blend of the two cultures is where "SteamGoth comes from, and it would be ridiculous to say they aren't a rebellious "Punk" style culture.  Besides the fashions are wonderfully interesting!

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/la-carmina/worlds-largest-goth-festival_b_1588296.html?utm_hp_ref=tw

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Doctor Fantastique's Voted People's Choice!

Steampunk Chronicle’s 2012 Reader’s Choice Awards (via http://doctorfantastiques.com)

 We are thrilled to have been voted “Best Website” by the lovely readers at The Steampunk Chronicle in this year’s Reader’s Choice Awards. Since June 2010, Doctor Fantastiques Show of Wonders has worked hard to bring you news of all things Steampunk. What started with a simple website has…

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Dieselpunk VS Steampunk Part 1 via Dieselpunk blog

photo from "Dipity"


My friend and Dieselpunk scholar has another great article, in two parts this time, that compares these two genres with unusually keen insight and an interesting perspective.

Dieselpunk VS Steampunk - A Comparison






Friday, June 22, 2012

Underwater Machine, UFO, Building or just a WTF?



I can't even fully explain this one.  It looks like the millennium Falcon, and is about the same size, but at the bottom of the Baltic Ocean, made of organic material, and appears to have used fire rings (you know like "Campfire girls type) on the top surface.  go figure!  I guess I and my crew must be shooting down really strange vehicles at some point in the future, but while traveling through some past century.  At least that would be the narcissistic interpretation, because of course, just like in the movie Forest Gump, great events  must naturally all be about us somehow.  OK, back to the real world and real science now!






Thursday, June 21, 2012

One Eyed Doll's Kim Doing Backbend Guitar at Yulecon

Kimberly Freeman Get's Down!  


Photo of the Day!

Ok, so this picture needs no introduction other than to say that I was privileged to be there and take this shot and that it was at Yulecon 2010.  Note the guitar cord trailing.  This was in the middle of a live performance and, yes, she was really playing at that moment while balanced with one foot on one tiny armrest and the other on a different one!  The people gathered around had been gawking and dancing, but this rather stopped any other thoughts than "OMG, where's my camera!"


Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Repost of: The Con Report: World Steam Expo via Doc Fantastique


The Con Report: World Steam Expo (via http://doctorfantastiques.com)
World Steam Expo is one of the world’s largest Steampunk gatherings. For the third consecutive year, the convention brought the community together over Memorial Day weekend in Dearborn, Michigan, for four days of nonstop excitement. Fans of the Expo sometimes refer to it as “Steampunkapalooza,”…

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

The Naughty Octopus

OK.  So maybe you are one of those doubters out there that still think humans are more clever than Octopi? Well... I ask you this then clever creatures:  If you were attacked by a pod of bottle nose dolphins... (unlikely since they tend to rescue our species and our young when we are dying in their environment whereas many humans kill and/or eat theirs... go figure!) Would you be clever enough, stout hearted enough, and quick enough to grab the attacking predator by the balls and then latch on strong enough to convince him that your species is just not good eating..eh?  think you could manage that one?  Well take a look at this.

Photo taken by the Ionian Dolphin Project - please support their work!



(Please note, by posting this I am not suggesting that I advocate this or any other form of assault or sexual molestation of bottle nose dolphins.  Actually they are nicer to most humans, than well... say... most humans are.  Well at least when not in rut.  they have been known to get a bit pushy when flirting with some human women that the dolphins interpret as being "in season", but hey, that's how dolphins flirt is all.  According to the dolphin handlers I spoke to at places that permit humans to swim with dolphins, women that are menstruating often do get unwanted special attention, such as gentle shoving by the males, but it just means "they like you".  They are pretty much all poly-amorous after all.)

Sunday, June 17, 2012

A Look at the Big Three Punk Genres via Dieselpunk blog

Psyche Chimere of Psyche Corporation - Steamy Cyberpunk Siren

My good friend and Dieselpunk aficionado brings class, not only to his wardrobe and many of our local Steampunk events, but to the literature in Cyberspace and this one is an example of his ability to take the complex and make it easy to understand about our world!

(Yes I know my English teachers would roll over in their grave at such a long sentence, but it just seemed very... well... Victorian.  Why use one word when 27 will do eh?)

Genre Punk Linguistic Family Tree

Friday, June 15, 2012

V is for Villians Brings Carnivale Noir Into the World of Steampunk


L to R Verica Jade, Mr. Agitaor,  Falon Flynn,  and The Pulse


V is for Villains was a band that I had not encountered prior to the Steampunk World’s Fair, but they seemed interesting enough, I stopped by one of their shows for a look and a listen.  The crowd seemed to really be enjoying themselves as many were up dancing in front of the band.  It had a smooth electronica feel, but with emotionally evocative sound, lyrics, and vocals.  The stories they tell in their songs reminded me at first of Voltaire as, like their name suggests, they are clearly taking the Villain’s point of view.  What is different is that they really do sing about plans to conquer, dominate, and subdue the planet.  This really gives the feel of a dark graphic novel come to life on stage!

 I asked for and received the opportunity to interview the band leader, Nicholas Santiago, about his band, the concept, and their future plans.  He told me that he and his brother,  Jonathon Santiago, performed for years in a band called Digital Mindy (Industrial Metal) for any years, but eventually wanted to try something entirely new. He wanted something a lot more fun and playful, but with really good quality music.  Something that would seem to leap right of the pages of his favorite dark graphic novels, like comic book super villains, but very classy, intelligent and dangerous ones.

Nick said he wanted a lot more theatre and story telling, but to still be making good music!  They mix Rock, Electronic, Industrial, and other styles into a fusion that rebels against the rules for musical genres.  It’s  a blend of Steampunk with Visual Noir.  He created V is for Villains to provide a stage for this type of musical performance art.  Nick’s brother, joined shortly after as their guitarist. Next  Carrie Hegenderfer came on board as the keyboardist, and finally Richard Nash as their drummer.

L to R Verica Jade, Falon Flynn, Mr. Agitaor, and The Pulse
Nick revealed that his supervillian name is “Mr. Agitator“, who, when not conquering the world, of course, is lead singer and songwriter for their evil collective.  His brother Jonathon, as “Falon Flynn“, spreads the power of darkness with his even more powerful guitar and backup vocals.  Their beautiful, and equally evil seductress Carrie, as “Veronica Jade“, adds depth with keyboard and her female lead vocals.

Their drummer Richard is just called “The Pulse”!  He was originally a fan of their evil plan to spread musical villainy and offered at one of their shows to audition for us.  He has added to the power of their sound ever since!

Mr. Agitator (Nick) said that he really has fun with this band.  “I get to entertain people on stage with music that I wrote, and [in the Steampunk community] I don’t have to dumb down the lyrics.  I get to do what I really like and they still really enjoy it!

I should add that the young lady (henchman?) manning their merchandise table was so friendly and charming, that I found I had signed up for their e-mail list before even hearing the band or speaking with any of them.  The rest of them seem just as friendly and smooth with the fans.  That combined with emotionally dark, but highly entertaining lyrics and music makes it likely that this band will become a frequent flyer on both the club and convention scene in the future.







Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Doctor fantastique's Show of Wonders Voted People's Choice!

Steampunk Chronicle’s 2012 Reader’s Choice Awards (via http://doctorfantastiques.com)

 We are thrilled to have been voted “Best Website” by the lovely readers at The Steampunk Chronicle in this year’s Reader’s Choice Awards. Since June 2010, Doctor Fantastiques Show of Wonders has worked hard to bring you news of all things Steampunk. What started with a simple website has…

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

One Eyed Doll's Kim Freeman Honors Her Mentor


Show at The Prophet Bar in Dallas 2012 on tour with Peelander Z


One Eyed Doll is a unique animal in the music scene!  They are one part "Little Orphan Annie", one part "Rob Zombie", one part Thrash Metal, totally unpredictable, and, as the title of one of their songs might indicate, "Beautiful Freaks"!  What you may not know, and I didn't know, is that they,  have a heart of gold and are true professionals when it comes to performing!  Junior is the more serious and sensible type that keeps Kimberly in one piece, physically and emotionally (including occasional medical care after throwing herself into the drums or Junior one too many times).  Junior also looks just scary enough to keep the slavering males at bay when Kim is looking the way she did when voted "Hottest Chick in Hard Rock".

So, remember when I said she had a heart of gold and a true professional?  Well take a look at this:   (If that isn't enough, I have another article coming about raising money for a chimpanzee rescue shelter)


http://oneeyeddoll.com/

Revolver Magazine Article

One final note:  If you are wondering why this item was originally posted on the Official Fan Site for Psyche Corporation, (and re-posted here) the answer is simple:  Kim Freeman and Junior are two of  their leader, Psyche Chimere's, favorite performers, and the more I observe and get to know them, the more I understand why.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Frenchy and The Punk Wax Poetic



Frenchy and the Punk, formerly the Gypsy Nomads, have made quite a name for themselves in the Steampunk Community on both coasts and everywhere in between.  I had the good fortune to meet them and hear them perform at the Steampunk World’s Fair 2012, so I took some time to get to know them as Steampunk performers.

Frenchy’s nickname is from the most obvious of sources.  She really is from France, she was born in Lyon.  She told me the band’s early name, The Gypsy Nomads, suited them at the time, not so much because they play Gypsy style music but that they are nomadic and multicultural. Over time their music evolved enough that they felt the new name simply better represented who they were as a band.

When asked what first attracted them to Steampunk, Frenchy described it this way:  “Steampunk brings warmth back to a world gone cold. It adds more beauty, texture, and depth to everyday objects and tools, reminiscent of a time past. It's a very creative community, which you can witness when you attend any steampunk event!"

“The Punk” got his moniker, because he started out his musical career deeply within the Punk Scene of the 80’s.  He said he was a “hard core Punk musician” rebelling against rigidity and limits in both society and
music!  He said this whole concept, as well as the music suited his personality, and to some degree still does.

He then gradually moved into “Speed Metal” where musicians compete to show who’s the fastest and the most skillful.  (kind of like in the “Old West”, but with guitars!)  Wikipedia defines it like this: “Speed metal is a sub-genre of heavy metal music that originated in the late 1970s from NWOBHM and hardcore punk roots. It is described by Allmusic as "extremely fast, abrasive, and technically demanding" music.”

The Punk told me that Steampunk has a retro feel that, like the original Punk Movement, rebels against limits. The Punk then got a really happy look and said he feels like, “With Steampunk, I've come full circle and I like it!”

In 2006 he says that Jeff Mach invited them to perform at The Wicked Faire and it was through that event that they first came to know of the steampunk genre. They have since been embraced by the steam punk community and have performed at almost every major steampunk event in the US. They play what they like, drawing from sources around the world, but always with an eye toward good music that tells stories and they have fun doing it!

I was able to hear their work and observe the response of the audience. I agree with his description about high quality musical story telling, but would underline the part about fun!  The audience certainly warmed to them and found their performance both fun and dance worthy!  You may notice that this theme of musical story telling gets repeated in multiple interviews with bands at Steampunk events suggesting that these truly are basic elements of Steampunk music as a genre.

They are on the road in Europe touring right now, but I just heard from them at one of their stops.
Here is what The Punk had to say about their current European tour:

"We are in France now, we played in Metz for the steam punk Metz crew and we play the big Steam Tour Soiree Extravaganza in Paris tomorrow and then head to England for shows and then back to France for more. It's been amazing so far and we'll be performing in a few different
cities from last year's European trek!"

I encourage you to come see and hear these early pioneers of the Steampunk genre any time you're fortunate enough to find yourself at an event where they appear.  Don’t forget to take time to meet them afterwards.  They are friendly, talkative, and just might wax poetic on you about the beauty of Steampunk, if you’re lucky!

Get the latest albums on their website!


Check out their new album release 'Hey Hey Cabaret'!


Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Kimberly Making a Difference!

Kimberly Freeman with one of her youngest fans!
(courtesy of the One Eyed Doll Website-photographer in upper left corner)


Some may question why I am so quick to include (or some might say abduct even) my favorite "Queen of Weird" and excellent musical comedic performer, Kimberly Freeman and her long suffering and ever supportive man Junior into the madness of the Steampunk Community, but as a "hard core Steampunk Lifestyler", I look constantly for ways to both rebel against the status quo and make the world a better place in the process.  Kim has me beat this week and then some!  Take a look:

http://www.reverbnation.com/c/fr5/artist_25959?eid=A25959_12957977_43702822&fsc=7a49143f82c

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Inside the Minds of The Clockwork Dolls





I have always heard about performances of The Clockwork dolls, but had never had the opportunity to see them until the Steampunk World’s Fair this year (2012).  I managed  to schedule an interview in advance with The Clockwork , but both their schedule (and mine) were so hectic, at first, that we had to reschedule, but I found the band leader Allison Curval to be so gracious and courteous about this, that even that was a pleasurable experience.  Allison, Daniel, and Chris attended the interview, and before long it seemed more like ‘hanging out with friends” than a formal interview, which permitted some insight into their character.

I found many variations in the three of them of outgoing and shy, verbal and quiet, thoughtful and funny, but the one thing I never encountered was any heavy ego.  That is one of the great things about independent bands.  Many of the members are still focused on the love of their art, and this group is no exception.

I attended their shows before the interview and considered them to be well presented, good quality, fun, definitely Steampunk, and thoroughly entertaining.  Their music often sounds like a great sweeping movie soundtrack, or a song in the midst of an adventure oriented musical, but with a classical score behind the singers.  Their singers Collette and Trinket have an excellent chemistry that was often quite funny.  While they are both fine singers, this combination made for duets that are superior to either of them separately.

We tried to conduct the interview in the cool shade under the trees of the Midway, but part way through the interview, Emperor Norton’s Stationary Marching Band decided to ignore their band’s name and marched through the middle of the area playing very happily and very loudly.  We thought that would pass, but then they went back to being stationary right next to us, so we moved to the hospitality suite.  Even that was a bit noisy and in the end we finished the interview in the hall.  I am mentioning this only to point out that through this all, Allison and the other band members made this all feel like a very fun and casual moment with old friends.

The music itself, the image, and concept of the band, Allison’s brainchild, was always intended to be to build a very visual and theatrical troupe that sang emotionally moving songs about adventure with a Steampunk Style using quality vocals and instrumentals in a variety of styles.  In other words, the concept was consistent, but the musical styles were never intended to stay static and was open to a variety of  approaches.  Their website describes it like this: “…they paint the epic musical picture of an elaborate and strange world as they tell the familiar tale of a young noble woman and her best friend battling against the odds for the freedom to be themselves. It is a world filled with pirates, dark saloons, airships, and the technology of both past and future. “Like most other “Steampunk “  bands they  use electric instruments, but blend them with older styles of instruments and music in a variety of ways.

When I asked about their early forays into the music scene, Allison confided that they owe a debt of thanks to Josh Pfieffer, the lead singer and band founder of Vernian Process for giving them support early on.  Allison sent a note of deep appreciation for the work of Vernian Process, and didn’t realize at the time it was sent from the Clockwork Dolls Myspace account instead of her personal account.  Josh tracked the message back and checked out their music.  Josh liked it well enough to book them as an opening act a few times for some of his solo performances, which naturally helped their public recognition in the Steampunk Community enormously.

They have continued to stay friends with the musicians they met on the west coast during that time and are very supportive of their various musical endeavors.  In their home turf of Baltimore, Maryland, they often perform with Eli August or with Petal Blight, and often interact with the Steampunk Community in Washington DC which is so nearby that they generally merge and function as one large Steampunk community with Baltimore.  They are also well connected with other bands and communities throughout the East Coast.  (Editor’s Note – Our friendly interaction at this event will now begin to connect them to most of the Steampunks from the Southern US as well)

As they have already been interviewed in a variety of forums, I focused more this time on learning more about the actual members of the band and how they came to join the band.  Allison Curval developed the concept and has always played guitar for the band, but has worked with multiple singers and musicians.  Allison said that she had already decided to have band members develop ornate fictional characters dressed primarily in Victorian Era attire, but she wanted to add as much elegance as possible herself on stage.  As a result, her “clockwork robotic governess” character is unusually colorful and elegantly attired.  When asked about how she spends her time when not making music, (and giving a serious answer that day) Allison admits to spending a lot of time on video games, RPGs, and “other nerdy stuff”
 
Collette Lovelace had been Allison’s close friend for some time before Allison heard her beautiful singing voice.  Collette was singing spontaneously one day at a restaurant they frequent, and it was so beautiful that Allison said that when she finished, you could have heard a pin drop in the place.  Naturally Allison wanted her to sing for the band.  She is engaging, friendly, funny on stage (as well as off) and gives excellent vocal skill to the lyrics.

Daniel met the band when they performed at Anime USA in 2009.  He was a big fan of their music, so he spent some time talking to Allison and the others after the show.  Daniel liked the band so much that he offered to assist the band as a staff member and has proven his worth in that area.   He has been with the band ever since.

Christopher found the band when they were asked last minute to replace the entertainment that had cancelled at a “Washington Lane & Lee Asian Leadership Conference”.  Christopher Bass met them after the show.  They seemed to have good rapport together, so when he said he was a guitarist, they asked him to audition.  Allison then brought him into the clockwork dolls as their Guitarist.

Trinket, their newest vocalist, was a very experienced performer that had been appearing as a perky and saucy singer for the Cheeky Monkey Sideshow for many years.  She was a mutual friend of Collette and Allison.  Allison had been discussing the possibility of joining the Clockwork Dolls for some years before she finally auditioned recently and created the excellent duet chemistry (and comedic chemistry) that has become almost a sideshow of it’s own in the middle of the band during performances!  Trinket is quite charming, very friendly, and has mannerisms that make it clear she is one of the old time pros that doesn’t drop character until the curtains come down, the audience has left, and all cameras are off.

I found all the band members to be people that loved their craft and simply so much fun to be around that they have become a favorite for me at events they perform at in the future.  Definitely check them out at their website and on Youtube as well.  I have provided some of the best links at the end of this article.