Posted in Alternative, Punk, rock

A Brief History of Steampunk

Steampunk is a movement in popular culture which has broken free of its dirigible moorings and crossed over into everything from film to music. Steampunk started as a sub-genre of science fiction or science fantasy that incorporates technology and aesthetic designs inspired by 19th-century industrial steam-powered machinery. Although its literary origins are sometimes associated with the cyberpunk genre, steampunk works are often set in an alternative history of the 19th century’s British Victorian era or American “Wild West”, in a future during which steam power has maintained mainstream usage, or in a fantasy world that similarly employs steam power. However, steampunk and Neo-Victorian are different in that the Neo-Victorian movement does not extrapolate on technology and embraces the positive aspects of the Victorian era’s culture and philosophy – Kim Newman’s early Anno Dracula work, for example, roots itself in Victorian Britain and surrounds itself with notable characters from the era, but has them behaving in the manner of the time.

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Steampunk most recognisably features anachronistic technologies or retro-futuristic inventions as people in the 19th century might have envisioned them, and is likewise rooted in the era’s perspective on fashion, culture, architectural style, and art. Such technology may include fictional machines like those found in the works of H. G. Wells and Jules Verne, or of the modern authors such as Philip Pullman. Other examples of steampunk contain alternative-history-style presentations of such technology as steam cannons, lighter-than-air airships, analogue computers, or such digital mechanical computers as Charles Babbage’s Analytical Engine.

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The first known appearance of the term steampunk was in 1987, though it now retroactively refers to many works of fiction created as far back as the 1950s or 1960s. It can occasionally become entwined with other sub-genres, such as H.P.Lovecraft’s world of Old Ones and humans in peril. Steampunk has also come to refer to any of the artistic styles, clothing fashions, or subcultures that have developed from the aesthetics of steampunk fiction, Victorian-era fiction, art nouveau design, and films from the mid-20th century. The most recent entrant to this world has been music, the Steampunk Records label putting together an entire roster of bands who subscribe to the artistic ethics of the genre. As well as putting out albums of the bands, they have also performed concerts around the UK, seeing audiences attend the shows dressed, as the bands do, in suitably neo-Victorian style. As a movement, it succeeds largely as there are no boundaries relating to age or genre, the inclusivity and the fact that it is already deliberately slightly dated, meaning that it has a longevity that many movements which have been and gone have lacked.

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Posted in Alternative, Indie, Pop, rock

Disturbing new Video from Mavis Victory Project. We Like!

Blimey. We didn’t expect that. On paper, the inventively-monikered Mavis Victory Project come across as a bit Arctic Monkeys – edgy without being sharp enough to cut yourself particularly seriously. We may have been mistaken.

We’re not entirely certain we know what’s going on in the video. The singer, one of four brothers in the band, starts off horizontal, much in the same way he sings but he seems to have invited some unusual friends over. If they were banning videos purely for being suggestive, this would have to be buried at sea. Somehow, even though it’s largely down to some saucy looks given by the ladies in the video, we feel utterly filthy. What’s happened to us?!

As we progress, we end up in a warehouse populated with torch-bearing hooded sorts with the odd flag being wafted. We’ve gone on holiday by mistake, as it says in the film. Has this anything to do with the song or is the whole thing signing us up for conscription to a life in a dodgy cult. We’re going along with it, anything for a bit of sleaze.

https://soundcloud.com/mavisvictoryproject/sets/mavis-victory-project

https://www.youtube.com/user/MavisOfficial

https://www.facebook.com/mavis.official/

 

Posted in Alternative, rock

The New Album From Matt Boroff

American born, but Austrian based musician-extraordinaire, Matt Boroff, is back with his third album to date, Grand Delusion, which is a tour de force from start to finish.

Having rubbed shoulders with some of the best in the business back in the 90s and sharing stages with the likes of Nirvana and Kyuss, Matt is a musician with a wealth of experience in his hands. Since then, after the dissolution of his high-school band in 1995, Matt has been focusing on honing his craftsmanship as a songwriter, going on to form Matt Boroff and The Mirrors.

‘What A Shame’ is a highlight from the album, showing just what Matt is capable of. Opening with a desert-esque blues intro, Matt drops the song into walls of distorted guitar and pounding drums, eventually evolving the track into some kind of 90s grunge, modern rock hybrid. It’s quite the beast.

The group toured Europe extensively, sharing the bills with rock titans such as Queens Of The Stone Age, Black Rebel Motorcycle Club and Calexico. However in 2010, Boroff decided to go solo, releasing two solo LPs, one EP and now ‘Grand Delusion’ which is set for release May 5th.

Matt will be performing a headline show in London at the Old Blue Last February 6th.

Find out more on Matt Boroff here:

Links:

https://www.facebook.com/events/1643784115922632/

https://soundcloud.com/mattboroff

https://www.facebook.com/mattboroff

https://twitter.com/mattboroff

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCGzpDREeZBQzg1wBsS1HwNw

http://www.mattboroff.com/

https://www.instagram.com/mboroff/

 

 

Posted in Alternative, rock

Bayonesse Release ‘Angel Touching Down’

No stranger to the dramatic, lead vocalist Christy Lee Rogers, is taking a pause from her hectic fine art career as an underwater artist, to collaborate with fellow artist and musician Ryan Murphy – forming the alternative indie rock band Bayonesse.

Rogers is known internationally by the press as the contemporary version of Baroque artists like Caravaggio.  Murphy, the owner and designer of rocker jewellery line Silver Luthier and front man for the rock band Forty Point, originally came into the band as producer to help structure Rogers’ vision, and eventually stayed on to solidify the duo.

In search of peace and understanding within a crazy, vulnerable, yet beautiful world, the pair have shifted their passions to the medium of music – harnessing the most “powerful and intense” art form in which to express their thoughts and emotions.

Their debut alternative rock single ‘Angel Touching Down’ from their upcoming album ‘Bleeding Heart’ is accompanied by a dark and avant garde underwater music video filmed and directed by Rogers.

The music video, starring actress Elisabeth Donaldson and Bayonesse themselves, and edited by award winning filmmaker Ray Izad-Mehr, gives life to the darkness and turmoil underlying their heart-felt lyrics. Completely unaltered and un-coloured, the footage is raw out of the camera, with a frenetic and stylized editing technique.

Rogers’ fine art work has been featured in the likes of Vogue, Harpers Bazaar, The Independent, Global Times and more. And Murphy’s rocker jewelry can be seen on Brad Whitford of Aerosmith, the guitar of James Hettfield of Metallica, and more.

Bayonesse have a wide range of musical influences including: Muse, Bjork, Imagine Dragons, to The Kills, Smashing Pumpkins, Ludovico Einaudi, Massive Attack and Metric. Through their diverse backgrounds and influences, they have formed a unique and unusual sound

http://www.bayonesse.com

https://soundcloud.com/bayonesse

https://www.instagram.com/bayonesse/

https://www.facebook.com/Bayonesse-930655520323706/

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC3InZxvRcyXI9hubyV2OlLA

Posted in Alternative, rock

‘Home’ by James Kennedy

Welsh singer-songwriter, James Kennedy, has returned to the world of music with his storming solo album, Home.

If Kennedy looks a little familiar, then you might recognise him from hard-rock band, Kyshera, who have found success in alternative circles in past years. However, with Home, James is moving away from his former style, instead adopting a more melodic rock sound, yet still driven by his powerful vocals.

The touring lifestyle with Kyshera proved difficult to handle for James which led to a period of depression for the talented songwriter. However, he managed to relieve his suffering by using songwriting as an outlet of release, eventually creating the beautifully crafted Home in just a few months.

Kennedy had serious hearing problems as a child, resulting in 3 major surgeries and the fear of permanent hearing loss always in the back of his mind. This led to his school life being interrupted, so James became an adept self-learner which he applied to learning guitar, vocals, piano, bass and music production. The self-taught musician was soon accepted to Welsh College of Music & Drama, before working in a recording studio where he used his skills to form his own label, Konic Records.

With an enticing range of powerful and gentle rock songs, it will be interesting to see how Kennedy has reinvented a style of music that has seemingly disappeared in recent years.

Home is out 31st March and you can check out James and his music here:

Links:

www.jameskennedystuff.com

www.instagram.com/JamesKennedyUK

www.youtube.com/user/jameskennedystuff

www.twitter.com/JamesKennedyUK

https://soundcloud.com/jameskennedyuk

www.facebook.com/JamesKennedyUK

Posted in Alternative, Indie

Clap Your Hands Say Yeah announce new album and release single ‘Fireproof’

Indie rock group Clap Your Hands Say Yeah announce their new album ‘The Tourist’ set to drop February 24th. To build the excitement even more, the group have decided to share their first single ‘Fireproof’.

Frontman Alec Ounsworth says “I wanted to experiment with packing lyrics. On this album, the lyrics and vocal melody effectively carry the songs, maybe more than anything else.”

Listen to ‘Fireproof’ here:

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Posted in Alternative, rock

Screams On Sunday explore today’s internet obsessed society in ‘The Night’

The alternative rock group that formed through the internet, Screams On Sunday (SOS), are set to release their single ‘The Night’ late January. The single blends guitar solos with rock rhythms, forming a unique raw sound. The Spanish female fronted band have based the track on the idea that today’s society are internet obsessed, lacking real life relations.

SOS met over the internet but soon became extremely close. Their close bond meant they could create music together with ease, soon releasing their debut EP ‘Call Reality A Lie’.

Listen to ‘Call Reality A Lie’ here:

‘The Night’ was recorded at Sound-Hub in Belper and mastered at Metropolis Studios in London. SOS find themselves improvising as it creates a more honest raw sound, meaning the production process perfects that improvised sound but still portraying what is inside.