Launching on 16th September, the Steampunk Record Label circus arrives on UK shores to bombard audiences with their uniquely theatrical live shows. Drawing on influences as varied as cabaret, classical, punk and, most especially, the exploding Steampunk scene, their live shows are a maelstrom of sonic and visual drama, with audiences as likely to be turning heads as much as the band themselves.
The roster features some of the most exciting acts on the live music scene, offering far more than your traditional verse-chorus-verse rock show. In no particular order, here are your new heroes:
Headliners (and indeed, featuring the label head honcho) BB Blackdog has over 600 gigs, 76 original songs, showcases at everywhere from Berlin to Los Angeles to London and countless festival appearances, including, Bearded Theory, Sonic Rock Solstice, Whitby Goth festival, under their collective belt. BB BlackDog have become a live band not to miss – determinedly using no overdubs, they thrive on playing simple catchy music whilst remaining fiercely independent
Feline and Strange
Feline & Strange has embraced the Victorian/Futuristic fashion ethic and infused it into not only their appearance but also their sound. The alien troubadours, masquerading as dapper Berliners to human eyes, combine ear-chilling vocals with an electronic collapsible cello to deliver dizzying supernatural sounds and otherworldly goings-on. Having toured extensively around the world, including, inevitably, the Steampunk World Fair. Their latest album, Out, will be accompanied by a UK-exclusive box-set in September.
Skeletal gutter-blues three-piece The Wattingers take their inspiration from the American Gothic simmer of films like Texas Chain Saw Massacre and Night of the Hunter; the surreal and oozing worlds of Alejandro Jodorowsky; and the unhinged brutality of bands like The Birthday Party and The Butthole Surfers, whilst retaining the wry humour of Screamin’ Jay Hawkins
The Dark Design
The Dark Design occupy a musical space somewhere between Jeff Wayne’s War of the Worlds and the Sisters of Mercy, combing rock-opera, theatre and murky secret societies, though that still tells only part of the story. Many of the Dark Design’s members are actually fully-functioning automata including the self-propelled autoglock, and their robotic drum-kit. They also play a variety of weird and esoteric instruments including hurdy-gurdy and the tubitar – yep, that’s a hybrid of a guitar and a tuba.
Victor and the Bully
Stalwarts of the British Steampunk scene, Victor and the Bully bring their combination of cabaret, steam-swing goodness to the stage once again. Expect ukuleles, honkytonk pianos and a whole host of surprises.
Montague Jacques Fromage
Victorian dance music for the Cyber Age, anyone? Like a time-travelling dandy dropped into a world of funk, soul and fairground barking.
…and not forgetting, the vivacious compère, Jezebel Steele
Encouraging their fans to dress in similar Steampunk attire to themselves, this is the first glimpse of the Steampunk musical onslaught. Remember to raid their merchandise stall for musical treats too!
Also appearing on the tour will be: Strangelove; Sweet liquorice; The Big Fibbers; Automotone; Black Light Secret;
Cage of Crows; The Medevil Biatches; Ichabod Steam; The Retro Clones; Return to Chaos and Steampunk Funk Bizarre
Opening 3 Day Charity Event: Ogri Clubhouse, Cirencester 15th/16th/17th Sept
The Black Market, Warsop – 22nd Sept
Snooty Fox, Wakefield – 23rd Sept
Doghouse, Nottingham – 29th Sept
The Pavillion, Llangollen – 30th Sept
The Lab, Northampton – 6th Oct
Musician, Leicester – 7th Oct
The George, Belper – 13th Oct
MEN, Heanor – 14th Oct
The Roadhouse, Birmingham – 15th Oct
Museum of Water and Power, Brentford -20th Oct
The Albert, Brighton – 22nd Oct