Vampire State Building

 

Vampire State Building was a hard rocking techno/industrial/goth band with an original sound that incorporated many different styles. Calm atmospheric interludes give way to all hell breaking out, techno landscapes are punctuated by strange samples, sweet female vocals compete with grinding beats. Their two singles are, unexpectedly enough, covers of Frankie Goes to Hollywood and Bronski Beat songs, and their poppy version of the latter ("Smalltown Boy") became a hit on Norwegian radio. The cliché fits: Expect the unexpected with Vampire State Building.

An important part of Vampire State Building was their live shows, which were real productions. The visual played as important a role in the show as the audio, which was all live. Video projections and dancers brought a theatrical bend to the performance, while onstage elements such as transvestites, dildos, knives and strange (and sometimes comical) costumes were a part of the ever-changing mix. The band played in Scandinavia and Germany in the '90s, including a show at the 1994 Roskilde Festival that was packed beyond capacity.

The Norwegian band was only active a few years, and unofficially disbanded after working on their second album, which was to be released in 1997. However, they attracted a lot of attention, and they are a band that was ahead of their time in their music, performance, and image. Members of Vampire State Building have gone on to enjoy success in Zeromancer, Lonely Crowd, and Red Harvest.