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Author Topic: Steampunk is dead?  (Read 11446 times)
Sludge Van Diesel
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« Reply #200 on: November 08, 2016, 05:00:53 pm »

That last comment reminded me of this

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robertdmoores
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« Reply #201 on: November 08, 2016, 05:02:52 pm »

That last comment reminded me of this



Haha, I'm pretty new to steampunk so I thought it was just me.  But if there's a meme, well... it's not just me!  Grin
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Kensington Locke
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« Reply #202 on: November 08, 2016, 05:06:43 pm »

Then there are those in the accepted Steampunk world which have become entrenched and arrogant.  They define Steampunk by themselves and form cliques and revel in elitism.

I haven't particularly spotted any of this on the forum, but I did notice it in the attitudes of some of the public, um, "giants"? of steampunk.  It seemed kind of weird to me that people who are semi-famous for being cosplayers or fringe musicians could have so much arrogance.  I thought maybe I was being too sensitive about it, but your word "elitism" is exactly what I was thinking when I listened to Abney Park and Unwoman discussing what they do.  It's too bad, because I think it's probably one of the dynamics that prevents steampunk from becoming more cohesive as a subculture.  An inherently small group of people really shouldn't have an overly exclusive top layer.  It's new members and new ideas that pump blood into any art movement, and it's stagnation of those things that can eventually "kill" it.

This forum seems pretty easy going since I got here.  At the strongest, somebody will say "this is what I consider to be steampunk" while still leaving room for "but your idea can work, too"

I imagine for the elitist's, there's at least 3 ways to get there:
a) fame has gone to their head.  They are famous, so it must be because their ideas are better, therefore, we should all listen to them
b) They had a strong vision of their projects that established their aesthetic that resulted in a cohesive brand that made them famous and now they think that is the Truth.
c) They are full of crap pitchmen, slinging verbiage around to make what they do sound impressive and thus create an air of authority.  It's all about the underlying metaphor.

I think at some point, these people make their living by being part of the definition of Steampunk.  That means they have to spout about lifestyle and meaning and such in order to show "they are living steampunk"

As compared to someone like me.  Who is just as happy to buy costume pieces as make them (time is money), and I only do this for events.  I would make a lousy interview when it becomes obvious that I am just a poser who likes costumes and making stuff and I don't have any particular allegiance to the genre.

These guys are hamming it up for the camera and attention.
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Kensington Locke
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« Reply #203 on: November 08, 2016, 05:10:17 pm »

That last comment reminded me of this



Haha, I'm pretty new to steampunk so I thought it was just me.  But if there's a meme, well... it's not just me!  Grin

They put the Me Me in Meme. Smiley

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Sludge Van Diesel
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« Reply #204 on: November 08, 2016, 08:59:36 pm »

That last comment reminded me of this



Haha, I'm pretty new to steampunk so I thought it was just me.  But if there's a meme, well... it's not just me!  Grin

The fellow on the left managed to alienate just about every member of the FB Music For Steampunks group with one post about how it wasn't Steampunk unless it sounded like his own band & conform to his idea of the "Steampunk Sound". Wouldn't let it go when many others corrected him & eventually got kicked off the group when he turned nasty.

The one on the right is one of the biggest egotists on the planet, who will stop at nothing for a bit of publicity.  He also labours under the misapprehension that he wrote the rulebook when it comes to Steampunk (he did actually write some rules, but they are largely ignored by everyone except newbies). Not adverse to telling folk in no uncertain terms that what they're doing isn't Steampunk, if it doesn't conform to his vision.

The opinions of both are best avoided, although their work isn't so bad.
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robertdmoores
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« Reply #205 on: November 08, 2016, 09:14:17 pm »

The opinions of both are best avoided, although their work isn't so bad.

Exactly my dilemma.  I have to say, I love Abney Park's music, but that elitism is NOT what I think steampunk should be about.  Isn't steampunk actually one of the most individualistic of all subcultures?  I mean the notion of upcycling parts into gadgets that serve your personal needs is pretty much the DEFINITION of individuality!  We don't need elitists, we need appreciation of individual artisans.

Ultimately, that's what I hope I've found here at the Steampunk Forums - a group of people who appreciate individual contributions to a thoroughly fascinating idea of retrofuturism.  If that isn't steampunk, then I need to keep looking because I'm not steampunk!  If it IS steampunk, then OMG I'm so glad I found a home!  Smiley
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Kensington Locke
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« Reply #206 on: November 08, 2016, 10:49:25 pm »

That last comment reminded me of this



Haha, I'm pretty new to steampunk so I thought it was just me.  But if there's a meme, well... it's not just me!  Grin

The fellow on the left managed to alienate just about every member of the FB Music For Steampunks group with one post about how it wasn't Steampunk unless it sounded like his own band & conform to his idea of the "Steampunk Sound". Wouldn't let it go when many others corrected him & eventually got kicked off the group when he turned nasty.

The one on the right is one of the biggest egotists on the planet, who will stop at nothing for a bit of publicity.  He also labours under the misapprehension that he wrote the rulebook when it comes to Steampunk (he did actually write some rules, but they are largely ignored by everyone except newbies). Not adverse to telling folk in no uncertain terms that what they're doing isn't Steampunk, if it doesn't conform to his vision.

The opinions of both are best avoided, although their work isn't so bad.

Just out of curiousity, who are those individuals?

I've not heard any SteamPunk Music and despite being a musician-like person, can't fathom what it would sound like.  By my internal definition of steam punk, I expect it to be derived/related to music of the 1800s of which I've not heard any (barring classical music from that era).  So if a dude wants to say they make SP music, that's great.  If they want to claim to define the standard, I highly doubt they can do so when the historical record is a bit sparse for that era to compare to.  All we can have is everybody's interpretation of what "it could be like"

The other frowny guy, I've seen pics all over for.  I've seen his pic on Willeford's site, which I suspect is because he's wearing a Willeford arm, not that he made it himself.  Don't look like Willeford, so I assume that's a different guy.

Note: while I have a strong opinion on "that's not steampunk", I feel that opinion should only apply to what I will design or buy (aka spend my money on). It should not having any bearing on anybody else's fun or inspiration or what have you.

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robertdmoores
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« Reply #207 on: November 08, 2016, 11:01:29 pm »

Just out of curiousity, who are those individuals?

On the left is Robert Brown, the lead singer for Abney park.  They are really a fantastic band, but also the "We've been doing this for decades so your opinion is not as relevant as ours," type. 

The fellow on the right I've seen, but can't name.  I've taken in a lot of information in the last few days, so some of it is blurring together a bit.

I definitely recommend Abney Park to anyone who hasn't heard them.  Very adventurous and inspiring.
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Sludge Van Diesel
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« Reply #208 on: November 08, 2016, 11:12:24 pm »


Just out of curiousity, who are those individuals?

Robert Brown of Abney Park & GD Falksen


As for Steampunk music, have a look at my FB page Notes section https://www.facebook.com/steampunkdj/notes/

In covering that very subject on my website I posted the following

 "So, is Steampunk a genre then?

Well, that all depends on who you talk to.  As a rule, Steampunk music is by and large music made by Steampunks and / or music that has a feel of Steampunk (and that can be a little hard to define)."


Music by acts that I'd consider Steampunk covers everything from (Neo) Clasical, Folk, Rock, Musichall, Electronica, New Wave, Metal & Punk & that's before you start getting into things like Chap-Hop, Electro-Swing & Pirate Metal etc...

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Colonel Hawthorne
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« Reply #209 on: November 09, 2016, 07:43:13 am »

... As a rule, Steampunk music is by and large music made by Steampunks and / or music that has a feel of Steampunk (and that can be a little hard to define)."

I believe Mr. van Diesel is entirel correct.  I have come to the view that there is probably no steampunk music (partly due to the difficulty in working out what it would sound like, referred to above), but there are certainly steampunk musicians.

I enjoy much of Abney Park's music, although I might wish they would return to the less-dark style of a few albums ago - Off the Grid, Aether Shanties, &c.  Mr. Falksen seems a decent chap - I've been at an event where he was judging the tea duelling - but I cannot recommend his Hellfire Chronicles one little bit.
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Colonel Sir Julius Hawthorne
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« Reply #210 on: November 09, 2016, 09:21:43 am »

Good morning, ladies and gentlemen.
Is steampunk dead?
http://spacecentre.co.uk/events/steampunks-in-space/
https://www.facebook.com/steampunksinspace/

I think not.

I remain yours,
Prof Cecily
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Kensington Locke
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« Reply #211 on: November 09, 2016, 03:07:14 pm »

... As a rule, Steampunk music is by and large music made by Steampunks and / or music that has a feel of Steampunk (and that can be a little hard to define)."

I believe Mr. van Diesel is entirel correct.  I have come to the view that there is probably no steampunk music (partly due to the difficulty in working out what it would sound like, referred to above), but there are certainly steampunk musicians.

I enjoy much of Abney Park's music, although I might wish they would return to the less-dark style of a few albums ago - Off the Grid, Aether Shanties, &c.  Mr. Falksen seems a decent chap - I've been at an event where he was judging the tea duelling - but I cannot recommend his Hellfire Chronicles one little bit.

I can agree with Sludge's assessment. Steam punk people approaching music is what makes steampunk music.  Which by nature would be widely varied in materials and styles.

 I'm sure even Falksen has his ups and downs, depending on the context.  When's he's writing, he is likely presenting himself as an authority on the subject, particularly to his publisher who may see him as the "go to SteamPunk guy."  Wishy-washy definitions of steam punk don't fly in that context.  But they likely tick off SteamPunk folks who somehow didn't make the cut by whatever he said (haven't seen anything like that when I checked out his website/blog on TOR).

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Clym Angus
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« Reply #212 on: November 09, 2016, 05:58:42 pm »

Men may say many things, I only tend to listen to the ones with my pay check in their hand or a gun pointed to my temple.  There is the occasional exception. Of course.

If some require validation by writing their own commandments I feel it is my duty to let them, applaud the obvious effort that went into the endeavour and then carry on regardless.

"Please accept my resignation. I don't care to belong to any club that will have me as a member" Groucho Marx

P.S. I've read a bit of GD Falksen, (I can't dismiss him out of hand from a picture when his mind is on paper for all to see.) He does raise some interesting points, the detachment of "Steampunk" and the appreciation of streampunk. I find his view on the "punk" part to be challenging, then it is an American perspective and should be taken as such. Also it is important to remember this is his gig. I.E. his day job. To profess to be an expert in a cultural phenomenal is no slim feat of convincing and requires no small measure of bravado to accomplish.

Just a dude trying to make his way in the world. He's not a flag, a rallying cry, a justification or a wall to hide behind. Just a dude (admittedly with some marvellous toys) just like the rest of us. 
« Last Edit: November 09, 2016, 06:33:54 pm by Clym Angus » Logged

Lazaras
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« Reply #213 on: November 09, 2016, 08:16:29 pm »

This forum seems pretty easy going since I got here.  At the strongest, somebody will say "this is what I consider to be steampunk" while still leaving room for "but your idea can work, too"

The one exception to this seems to be the 'dipped in glue and rolled in cogs' look, which is rather... not well recieved.
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Kensington Locke
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« Reply #214 on: November 09, 2016, 10:19:47 pm »

This forum seems pretty easy going since I got here.  At the strongest, somebody will say "this is what I consider to be steampunk" while still leaving room for "but your idea can work, too"

The one exception to this seems to be the 'dipped in glue and rolled in cogs' look, which is rather... not well recieved.

I imagine that for many people, the earliest SteamPunk think they saw (and liked) was dipped in glue and rolled in gogs.  Because then, it was new (to the observer) and probably looked unlike anything else they'd seen.

Then, once you've seen more SP things, thought about the function those gears didn't play, saw how it was "just some gears glued onto a normal object" and it lost its luster.

Considering how long this forum has been around (and its members).  We can expect some members to be new and agog at the cog, others who are inured to the quaint charms of simpler designs and those who been in both stages and just don't care.

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RJBowman
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« Reply #215 on: November 10, 2016, 12:56:09 am »

That last comment reminded me of this



How did he manage to get that photo everywhere?
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Dr Fidelius
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« Reply #216 on: November 10, 2016, 01:09:30 pm »

That last comment reminded me of this



How did he manage to get that photo everywhere?

His promoter is known for her ruthless efficiency.
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Clym Angus
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« Reply #217 on: November 10, 2016, 01:35:12 pm »

Some do, others shout. Few do both well.
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Colonel Hawthorne
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« Reply #218 on: November 11, 2016, 07:37:02 am »

That last comment reminded me of this



How did he manage to get that photo everywhere?

His promoter is known for her ruthless efficiency.

And an almost fanatical devotion to the Pope?
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Clym Angus
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« Reply #219 on: November 11, 2016, 01:10:57 pm »

Nobody suspects the Steampunk promoter!
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Sludge Van Diesel
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« Reply #220 on: November 11, 2016, 02:15:57 pm »

I think she's extremely suspect
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robertdmoores
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« Reply #221 on: November 11, 2016, 04:40:26 pm »

I imagine that for many people, the earliest SteamPunk think they saw (and liked) was dipped in glue and rolled in gogs.  Because then, it was new (to the observer) and probably looked unlike anything else they'd seen.

Then, once you've seen more SP things, thought about the function those gears didn't play, saw how it was "just some gears glued onto a normal object" and it lost its luster.

That general aesthetic is definitely an important element in my opinion, but I feel duty bound to make sure that I never, ever, "just glue some gears on it".  I will not raise my hand in class until I can tell you why people would wear goggles and carry brass gears on their hats; why steam technology shouldn't have been replaced by internal combustion; how steam engines could be made practical enough to become ubiquitous throughout a believable world.

Having said all that, I am definitely working on some semi-rational answers to those questions as I formulate my own stories, and I have to say that steampunk only really has a future if those answers can be satisfactory.  Google "what is steampunk" right now, and you'll see a whole lot of "nobody really knows", because the reality of steam technology is so impractical that very few rational people pour a whole lot of effort into it.  That's why the best anyone mainstream can do with it is just "glue some gears".
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RJBowman
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« Reply #222 on: November 11, 2016, 05:16:18 pm »

I imagine that for many people, the earliest SteamPunk think they saw (and liked) was dipped in glue and rolled in gogs.  Because then, it was new (to the observer) and probably looked unlike anything else they'd seen.

Then, once you've seen more SP things, thought about the function those gears didn't play, saw how it was "just some gears glued onto a normal object" and it lost its luster.

I was lucky that, due to when I was born and where I lived, the first steampunk thing I ever saw was a Rowland Emett kinetic sculpture. It was a busy mass of spinning, whirling things, and when everything is in motion, it gives the impression that everything has function.

I have a memory, circa 1990, of seeing a very weird man in Ypsilanti, Michigan. He was old, and black, and thin, and frail looking, and wore a cheap suit, and a hat decorated with multiple old pocket watches and tiny plastic baby dolls. At the time I thought that he might be a Voodoo practitioner, and that he would not be out of place in a Shadowrun setting, but now I think that his weird style could be adapted to steampunk.
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Colonel Hawthorne
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« Reply #223 on: November 14, 2016, 07:34:22 am »

...   I will not raise my hand in class until I can tell you why people would wear goggles ...

That's easy, sir.

As I believe I may have remarked elsewhere, goggles are essential to keep the dust out of one's eyes when piloting one's airship.
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Cora Courcelle
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« Reply #224 on: November 14, 2016, 10:39:10 am »

..... and carrying a few spare gears is like having a safety pin somewhere - one never knows when it may come in handy.
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