The Men That Will Not Be Blamed For Nothing – New Steampunk Album Out Now
New steampunk album out on March 12th, after a minor scuffle (bare knuckled boxing?) with EMI. From Tesla to Brunel to Zombie Prince Albert, thrill to the sounds and lyrics of some of steampunk’s finest.
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As steampunk aesthetics are increasingly recognised in alternative culture, the jury’s still out on what a steampunk sound purports to be. The easiest way to settle the matter is, of course, with soothing pleasantries over a nice cup of tea. You’re a steampunk who makes pop music? You’ve conceived and built your own instruments out of brass and wood, and etched whatever holy/infernal sound you managed to procure from them onto vinyl? Your lyrics deal with steampunk themes? Any and all of these might fall under the Corsets-n-Cthulhu banner.
The Men That Will Not Be Blamed For Nothing (Jack the Ripper reference, dear hearts) are no pretenders to the crown. Seeking to put the punk into steampunk, their sound is variously metal, jollity and anti-folk, for want of a better term. They look the part on a daily basis (huzzah!) and their lyrics are witty, evocative and sublime – it’s no surprise that two of the members of TMTWNBBFN (yes, catchy acronym) are professional comedians (that’ll be Andrew O’Neill and Marc Burrows). They like to brand themselves a blend of “Dr. Jekyll, Dr. Watson, doctored history and Dr. Who”. They’ve even taken steam sensibilities to a satisfying extreme by liasing with the BBC Technology website to build an archaic phonograph in order to play a TMTWNBBFN single released exclusively on limited edition wax cylinder.
Their 2010 debut album, ‘Now That’s What I Call Steampunk Vol. 1’ has, unfortunately, got into hot water with EMI, who – as of writing – are threatening legal action unless the album name is changed for copyright reasons. TMTWNBBFN are naturally being terribly nice and accommodating about it, but we at Mookychick suggest the album be re-named ‘EMI Are C*nts’. We have never heard such ‘big kid in the playground’ beaurocratic silliness in our lives. On the upside, if you own a first pressing of ‘Now That’s What I Call Steampunk Vol. 1’, that’s a collector’s item sitting right there in your hand. But we are not here to talk about EMI allegedly (magic word, that) being a bunch of dinosaurs wallowing in putrefaction, clasping all the small mammal carcasses to their stinking bodies they can in an effort to shield themselves before the meteor comes. Oh no.
For we are here to celebrate the launch of the latest – and arguably most glorious – album by The Men That Will Not Be Blamed For Nothing! One whose title is so long we might have to place it on a new paragraph!
It’s called… trumpets, please… ‘This may be the reason why THE MEN THAT WILL NOT BE BLAMED FOR NOTHING cannot be killed by conventional weapons’. The clue to the title is in the album cover – a lovely acrylic on canvas of Prince Albert as a most distinguished zombie, indeed.
The album is a veritable cornucopia of wit, whimsy and hard-edged social comment, overlaid on memorable tunes – in some cases, pretty heavy numbers that require you to get your sweat on and see the Men live if you get the chance. You can expect odes to Isembard Kingdom Brunel (he of tunnels and digging fame) and to the Tesla coil (if you have a child at any point after reading this and do not give it a middle name of ‘Tesla’ we’ll be most disenchanted with you).
Personal favourites include ‘Margate Fhtagn’ (the Victorians were in love with sanitising the seaside experience. They built piers, and ate sandwiches, and donned red-and-white to-the-knees bathing suits… oh, look. You’ve seen Burton’s Sweeney Todd. You know the score. But we bet the Victorians didn’t expect the rising of the Old Ones from the sea. Silly Victorians – they never checked their almanacs to see if the stars were right).
Other tracks of particular note are ‘Doing it for the Whigs’ (Yeah! Take that, Tories! A history lesson of sorts, with lyrics still appropriate today) and (my very, very favourite) ‘The People’s Common Sense Medical Advisor’. This is a softer track, and a marvellous take on the Victorians’ approach to medicine, which was scientific in many ways but something of a dark fairytale in others. It is also a song about onanism. Okay – it’s mostly a song about onanism.
Catch them live if you can. Just catch them. Quick. Before they get away…
Album and Gig news:
The new album will be out on March 12th via Leather Apron Records.
Album launch party at Club AntiChrist, March 9th.
Finally… ‘Goggles’, off their first album
And the lyrics thereof, because you can’t always trust yourself to get a decent feed from the sound desk…
Some men like their women deferential and polite / but we prefer the type of girl who looks like she could win a fight / dainty girls are all well and good but they can’t fix your stuff / a pretty girl is always nice, but somehow not enough / There’s more to girls than looks and charm, there’s spirit, smarts and wit! / if you just want an ornament then you sir are a tit! / It’s time that we as men reject this view of womenfolk / and embrace the type that sing and dance and fart and f*ck and smoke / so f*ck polite society and all that that entails / I want bawdy songs, messed up hair, and dirty fingernails.
Sales link coming in March 2012…