Steampunk music, just like Steampunk itself, is a strange and difficult thing to attempt to pin down and define. The moment you think you’ve found some definition which pleases you, the community produces something entirely different that threatens previously standing assumptions. It’s one of the many, many reasons why I adore Steampunk.
I’ve never particularly enjoyed hip-hop and especially not the culture that is built around music that is often degrading to women and too focused on a materialistic lifestyle. Modern hip-hop doesn’t even require one to be able to sing or play an instrument (see auto-tuning, which many genres are guilty of employing). Systems like this take so much of the authenticity out of music.
So when I heard that hip-hop had made its way into the Steampunk scene, I was at first very unsettled by the notion. But I gave it a shot nonetheless.
I bought The Indifference Engine by Professor Elemental during the week before the con and with all the frenzied adventures leading up to Steamcon II, I had very little time to sit down and actually listen to it. But listen to it I have, and I’m here to tell you, hip-hop has arrived in Steampunk, and it’s going to be alright.
Professor Elemental’s latest album is an amusing and lighthearted exploration of the outer limits of Steampunk music. From Cup of Brown Joy‘s description of the glories of fine tea to Fighting Trouser‘s stylish throwdown, this is one album I am sincerely enjoying.
If you’d like to learn more about Professor Elemental, please visit his website. There, you can learn more about him and his music, find out when he’ll be in your part of the world, and perhaps purchase an album.