It’s been an intense summer for this indefatigable device known as Perhaps Contraption.
If you’re unfamiliar with what we do, a recent description from the Buskers Bern Festival in Switzerland sums us up quite nicely:
A musical monster: exuberant, multivocal, bewitching and disturbing all at the same time. The twisted brass sounds like Steve Reich and Andy Warhol with a Bulgarian women's choir between them, staggering through Oktoberfest – beautiful and dead drunk.
We play everywhere. From muddy fields to wet streets, from concert halls to dingy punk rock venues. Being mobile, and able to play completely acoustically helps us achieve this.
This summer we blasted the fields of Glastonbury Festival with a dizzyingly silly 10 performances all over the site. This was followed by trips to street festivals in Spain, and leading huge "Megatraption” parades at The Secret Garden Party and Lovebox. (the latter being a collaboration with the Roundhouse Brass Ensemble).
These jaunts were entwined with London rock shows and family friendly performances at the Birmingham Symphony hall and Just So Festival.
The massive highlight of this year was winning the Haizetara International Street Band Competition in Amorebieta, Spain. We received a whopping 10,000 euros; the judges prize. We played alongside some incredible bands from around the world, blasting the streets with a range of high octane performances. We were honored to be presented with this award and will put it towards completing our next album; due to be released early in 2015.
This is where we now shift our focus as the season draws to a close.
The album will be our first release since “Perambulations” the single which the Help Musicians Emerging Excellence Award contributed greatly to. The interactive video we created continues to be received well. Amazingly, it has attracted the attention of GoPro; the manufacutors of the cameras we mounted on various instruments and people to create the experience. They may promote our new single and give us support through social media channels which is potentially another really big boost for us.
The video was also an essential springboard in us developing our burgeoning live show; one that will include projections, dancers and lighting design. As a long term goal we want to produce shows with more intricate and impressive production; drawing from my background in immersive theatre and a desire to create more intense and personal live experiences.
This is a continual work in progress. Compositions from the new album will begin to make their way into the show, and at this stage I’m beginning to draft funding proposals for the Arts Council who we would love to help develop the work.
Perhaps Contraption is still fully DIY, yet growing considerably. We hold fast that we will receive some more help from the industry soon to boost our profile.
Though it’s comforting to know that we have the tools and expertise within the group to keep developing, and that there are institutions like Help Musicians around to support emerging and independent artists like ourselves.
Bring on next season…
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