In an alternate reality, we had a smashing SX day party yesterday. I knew I always enjoyed the chaos and interactions of SX week, but didn't know how much I would miss it until now. But enough whining, I'll spread that out over the coming weeks in detention/lockdown/etc.
The amazing Chris Walker, who owned and operated Barristers, one of my old band's punk rock stops, turned me on to Automusik. I saw them live and brought them back a few times to Radio Cafe in Nashville, and assimilated them into the label.
Automusik consists of Automusik, a faux-German mad scientist type in a lab coat, two "female rock units", and a television set that is considered a member of the band and hypeman (hypebot?). The live show is equal parts smart, hilarious, offensive, and confrontational. My elevator pitch for them was always, "Imagine Kraftwerk meets (SNL skit) Sprockets".
During Automusik's last days in Memphis, the band starred in a mockumentary entitled "Automusik Can Do No Wrong". An award winning film that skewered music films like Rattle and Hum and contains a 10 minute homage/parody of "Purple Rain".
The song, "The Machine" performed by Die Zeit, was also written by Automusik, mirroring the way Prince wrote songs for The Time in Purple Rain.
Automusik relocated to Austin in the mid 2000's and performed even more outrageous and hilarious shows, skewering many sacred cows including as seen in these videos below, filmed during SXSW 2010.
Watch the Chicken Ranch You Tube channel (or better yet subscribe) for more videos from the archive.
Automusik 101 Playlist: