Monday, October 29, 2012

Clockwork Vaudville

Steam Powered Giraffe
My latest musical obsession has finally busted a barrier I had discussed IN a COUPLE previous posts. Mostly about how I felt that most "steampunk" expressions try a bit to hard to fill the culture with more of the same instead of creating something to be amazing and it happens to fit the scene.

I have mentioned a couple previous endeavors that really speak to me as far as being Steampunk or just being a creation that's amazing and not trying too hard.

"SPG" does this, and really screams to me as a group, as music, as performance, as art.
The above video has, from left to right, "The Jon" who left the group recently, The Spine, Rabbit, and Upgrade, who left the group a while back, performing on their "home turf" busking at a local park.
All of them having trained in Mime, Clown, music & dance, formed this group and developed these characters as well as a backstory and everything.
Anyone who knows me in a theatrical sense knows this sort of thing really turns me on artistically and I have fallen in love.
Honestly, if given the opportunity, I would buy a concertina & develop a robot in a heartbeat if given the chance to perform with them. No lie, I would LOVE to add my tenor to the troupe.

A year or so back they even produced a DVD through a Kickstarter, which led to some excellent music videos showcasing a new clean sound along with some superb music videos.

Although their ravenous fans post excellent video after video from their numerous performances in Balboa Park, San Diego Zoo, and the Steampunk Con circuits, its also great to have high quality, high production value samples to show new potential fans. As of the composing of this post I have infected half a dozen other new SPG fans directly and countless other secondary targets.

I would of course like to give thanks to THIS SOURCE where I came across  #5 Brass Goggles Via Houston Press "Top 10 Steampunk Songs" and have been hooked ever since. I literally consumed their media for the week preceding our trip to Disneyland.

I love the attention to detail of their robotic movements and how The Spine has a pneumatic "bounce" to him, and how Rabbit truly moves like one of those mechanical show bots from an amusement park, with the small little isolated ticks and rotations. And then of course their musical talent as a group. In every incarnation of the group so far each member is a master of multiple instruments (vocals count) often switching instruments for different songs. If you have not listened to any of thier music yet, let me tell you, hearing The Spine go from a high sustained harmony and suddenly dropping to a rich baritone just makes your music heart rumble with his vocal chords. And watching Rabbit prance around to Captain Albert Alexander reminds you they're true performers in every respect, not just a band with a gimmick.

They recently added Hatchworth to the lineup, to round out the trio (no punn intended) as he was one of their "humans" until The Jon left, so now the Ticking Mantle shall tell how it sits upon the newest robot.

Above is the song I was introduced to them with and I hope it gets you just as excited as it did me. HERE IS THEIR SITE! There you can get almost everything Steam Powered Giraffe related, including info on where the bots are from, where they went, how to throw money at them for things, as well as a COMIC! It hasn't been updated in a while, but rumor has it from a friend of mine that Rabbit is also a graphic designer (good reason as to why he designed most of their art) so, he might understandably be busy.

And as a nod to "Honeybee," their song which they've intro'd with Rabbit talking about his love Jenny the toaster, I give you, my own bit of SPG fanfic, Jenny
She has gone into a life of performance as well, this is her after a production of Taming of The Shrew. Petruchio used her to tie up Kate, it was set in the generic time frame of 50-60's sitcoms.

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