Now here's a band I'd love to see live and I just discovered that they "re-formed" (or officially just returned from their cryogenic hibernation!!!) to play at SXSW in Texas this year too. Man Or Astro-Man? was one of the most theatrical punk bands of the 1990s, recording 10 albums, 2 CD EPs, and a plethora of singles and contributions to compilation albums between 1993 and 2001.“We did have minor concerns regarding our aging process on planet Earth,” is what they told Wired.com in an e-mail interview. Formed in Auburn, Alabama, USA, the group originally featured CoCo the Electronic Monkey Wizard on alternate universe bass, Birdstuff on drums, Star Crunch on guitar, and Dr. Delecto & his Invisible Vaportron on bass! Dexter X later replaced Dr. Delecto, and Star Crunch left the band too. Read more of the Wired.com interview at
Primarily an instrumental band, Man or Astro-Man? blend the garage and surf rock style of the 1960s with the new wave and punk rock sounds of the late 1970s and early 1980s. Man or Astro-Man? are known for their use of science fiction themes, audio samples, obscure electronic devices (such as theremins and tesla coils), and high-energy live performances. Their earlier albums like Is It ... Man or Astroman? and Destroy All Astromen! featured some traditional surf rock instrumentation and sci-fi sound bytes, but later albums like EEVIAC... and A Spectrum of Infinite Scale make more use of synthesizers, printers (like the Apple ImageWriter II) and more abstract, experimental sounds. Their recordings are often peppered with sound bytes from forgotten science fiction films and TV shows. I just got myself a copy of EEVIAC... on ebay for 1p!!! yes 1 brand new English penny and it still has their trademark 60s surf rock guitar sound coming through strongly.
Man Or Astro-Man? on stage at this years SXSW music festival at Austin, Texas, USA.
Incidentally, the group took its name from the poster for the American version of the film "Gasu Ningen Dai Ichigo" or The Human Vapor. (see below)