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Emporium Vernesque

Emporium Vernesque Arnhem Netherlands
Emporium Vernesque in Arnhem, the Netherlands, November 10 (Hilde Heyvaert)

The organization of this brand new steampunk convention has done a great job offering a wide variety of workshops, performances of both bands and tribal dance, and other things to participate in such as a group shop taken with an actual antique camera, the steampunk bake-off and many others. Aside from that there were several bars offering a wide variety of decently priced drinks, you could get some food (either from the venue or one of the many places within walking distance in town) and a handful of shops offering their wares to visitors. Continue reading “Emporium Vernesque”

FACTS

FACTS is one of those conventions that for the longest time just offered the same thing over and over again. The one year was better than the other but generally speaking it may have been one of the biggest Belgian cons, it was far from the best. Not this year though, this year FACTS got their act together. Whether this is because of the ever growing competition from new cons such as Japan Expo Belgium (happening a mere few weeks after FACTS) or Antwerp Convention I’m leaving up for debate, fact of the matter (pun intended) is that FACTS this year buckled up and presented a fun, well organized and far more original program than it has in years. Bravo FACTS! Continue reading “FACTS”

Planes B: Spanish Steampunk Anthology

Planes B

A year ago, two writers — Josué Ramos from Spain and Negro Inmunsapá from Mexico — had the idea to create the first steampunk anthology in Spanish. This led them to more ideas. One was the creation of a collection of books made to promote new writers, something never quite seen before. Out of it came Planes B.

The first volume is now here and it was officially introduced during EuroSteamCon last week.

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Paris Manga and Sci-Fi Show

While in Europe Manga, J-culture and sci-fi conventions are a-plenty and pretty well represented in all the bigger (and some of the smaller too) countries, I have to say that the French are pretty undisputed when it comes to putting conventions together.

Throwing Manga and sci-fi into one big mix may seem quite strange, but they pulled it off seemingly effortlessly, mixing both in the hall of Porte de Versailles convention centre where the event was held. Continue reading “Paris Manga and Sci-Fi Show”

Fight Like A Girl

Fight Like A Girl

Fight Like A Girl takes the listener on a seventeen-song musical journey almost told like the soundtrack to a tale spun by Emilie Autumn and I feel that some songs would actually benefit from visuals to enhance them. I’m pretty sure they’ll be better live than on record.

It’s a well-balanced album, some songs better than others, with lyrics matching to the background setting of madness, asylums and carnivals, revenge and all other things associated with it. There’s a good balance between anthems, melody and ballad, with Autumn’s voice remaining strong throughout, proving she isn’t bound to a certain genre or style and neither will she allow herself to be.

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Chauvinism in Steampunk

Late last year, when an image of teenage pop star Justin Bieber wearing something of a steampunk outfit appeared online, the vast majority of steampunk fandom seemed appalled. For such an icon of contemporary pop culture (or lack thereof) as Justin Bieber to delve into the steampunk aesthetic was anathema to steampunks’ self image as defying the mainstream culture. Some said this marked the end of steampunk as an alternative culture altogether.

That in itself, our Marcus Rauchfuß observed, was evidence of steampunk having gone mainstream already.

“When a scene is truly underground,” he wrote, “new members are always welcome. People are excited about and very welcoming toward newcomers. The scene has to grow to a certain point for a style-police to emerge.”

Yet that has happened to steampunk. And it’s not something we can blame Justin Bieber for.

Continue reading “Chauvinism in Steampunk”