With so many different party collectives constantly popping up in Melbourne, it is surely hard to stand out in the crowd. However, that’s is exactly what SteamPhunk manages to achieve with their wild, whimsical events. Combining performance art with electro swing, glitch hop, ghetto funk and tech house sub genres, their events encourage us to embrace our childlike imagination, come together as one tribe and, of course, dance our hearts out! The Melbourne Critique spoke with the founder of Steamphunk, Mickey Space about the significance of warehouse party culture in Melbourne, the steampunk phenomenon and what we can expect from their upcoming party.
Please introduce yourself and tell us a bit about your musical background and inspirations.
My name is Mickey Space! I’ve been a DJ for more years than most clubbers have been out of nappies! My background has been quite diverse in the musical and subculture context, having straddled all kinds of scenes and genres from hip hop to metal, punk and grunge rock, funk and soul, to the various forms of EDM; from the early days with acid house all the way up to the more recent variations of house and other recent incarnations such as glitch and trap! I’ve been particularly inspired by the joy and playfulness of artists mixing in older retro styles of balkan beats, swing and big band music which gave rise to the current trend of electro-swing!
What is the Steamphunk Collective?
the Steamphunk Collective are the artists and lovers involved in steamphunk- from djs and musicians to visual and performance artists… and of course, those being creative with their costumes also!
So, what can we expect from your upcoming party?
Our upcoming SteamPhunk party focuses on the steampunk phenomenon that has become one of the major influences of festival ‘style’ that has flourished out of such events as burning man. We particularly encourage artistic performance and expression, not only showcasing talented musicians and djs in the electro swing, glitch hop, ghetto funk and tech house sub genres, but also with a big focus on performance art, presenting various quirky happenings between musical acts. We encourage the punters to dress up in thematic costume thus becoming collaborators in the event, making it a most whimsical night of fun and debauchery!
How important is electronic music and warehouse party culture to Melbourne?
Melbourne is Australia’s premier city of music, art and culture. As such electronic music and warehouse party culture have played a vital pivotal role in placing Melbourne as a leader in this scene. It is an indispensable outlet of creative expression for our burgeoning arts and culture scene.
What are your hopes and plans for the future?
My hopes and plans for the future are to transcend the illusion of our current separative paradigm, into a place where steampunk events become the main driving force to bring people together to unite as one tribe, one love, one heart! Steampunk is the futuristic visions of the steam age era, SteamPhunk is the bringing together of the past and future into the now, garnished with a good sprinkling of PHUNK for good measure!!
If this community disappeared, what would Melbourne be at risk of losing ?
If this community disappeared in Melbourne we could potentially spiral into a macho laden society of beer swigging, footy hissing bogan mediocrity.