Spaceships are cool are the UK’s answer to the Flaming lips all mixed up in a cartoon bubble of sci-fi sunshine pop.
Dressed in matching orange space suits they mix acoustic instruments with bleeps and beats, theremins and stylophones and they have taken their quirky folktronic tunes all over the world including performances at Glastonbury festival, CMJ New York, NXNE Toronto and Iceland Airwaves.
They have just released their ‘Music for space cadets’ EP which features instrumental songs for children who love sci-fi and have already released two LPs which created a wonderland of day dreaming music featuring chilled out vocals and more instruments than the Beach Boys ever used.
Their music has been used on MTV reality TV, BBC, Virgin Atlantic flights, Sky transworld sports, Finnish airways, Canadian fashion TV, shows about cakes, Swedish programs about farmers and even on a Greenlandic feature film.
And they give away origami space rockets to everyone they meet at live shows!
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Rob Maddison - Vocals, Guitar, Synth, thingamagoop, Casio
Johnny Cousins - Bass, Backing Vocals
Tim Maddison - Drums
Ben James - organ, Electric Piano
HELEN MADDISON - Violin, Viola, theremin, Casio
Rob Garner - Synth, Melodica, Stylophone, Casio
James Catchpole - Electric Guitars
SPACESHIPS ARE COOL. EP (5 tracks) & LP 'Heart echoes' & new single SHE are all available digitally at iTunes, gogoyoko, amazon & Emusic. hand screen printed artwork cds and 7" & 12" vinyls available from all live shows.
Collaboration project 'TOKYO EP' Mr Bird vs Spaceships, is also available through iTunes stores. with our remix of Icelandic band 'Bloodgroup' available at www.gogoyoko.com
Digi-single (2011) DON'T BE ALONE out now on iTunes, eMusic, gogoyoko.com.
Debut LP Heart echoes (2010)
2nd LP 'WE WERE HERE' (2012)
Itunes, gogyoko, emusic, spotify.
Mini-LP MUSIC FOR SPACE CADETS (2013)
Live review of single launch 2013 at Nottingham Contemporary
Sound of Pop Canadian music week
live review of the band's performance at Canadian music week
DAZED & CONFUSED Spaceships & tatatmoto animated film
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Feature about fashion designers SS/10 with spaceships are cool & tatatamoto music as the soundtrack...Feature about fashion designers SS/10
with spaceships are cool & tatatamoto music as the soundtrack to Noriko okaku's animation.
SPINearth's bands to watch out for
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Spaceships Are Cool “Strawberry Kicks” Hometown: Nottingham, United Kingdom Sure, “Strawberry...Spaceships Are Cool
Hometown: Nottingham, United Kingdom
Sure, “Strawberry Kicks” is best described by the band’s self-applied genre title “sci-fi sunshine pop”, but what’s behind the song lends a deeper meaning. Spaceships Are Cool is a throwback to the good old days of two-tone video game soundtracks, omnichords, and Fisher Price tape decks – a testament to how being nerdy is now the new cool. This dreamy ditty mixes their obsession with early synths with a healthy understanding of acoustic guitar and a vocal layer that you couldn’t find on Super Nintendo (though it would be great set to Mario Kart’s rainbow level for N64). Leading the Spaceships, Rob Maddison is involved in a host of productions, including playing live shows, contributing to various compilations, and producing music for outlets such as MTV and BBC. Check out the band’s new LP Heart Echoes!
CMJ spotlight review
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Sounding like a retro childhood mindscape, Spaceships Are Cool build dream-like romps through digita...Sounding like a retro childhood mindscape, Spaceships Are Cool build dream-like romps through digital and aural playgrounds with airy falsettos and blip-rock flourishes. Like a bunch of pop princes, Spaceships push the boundaries of digital cartoon jams with their drum machines. The harmonies and optimistic chord crunching feeds into a sound that sounds like '60s mentality trapped in a future world of music-making. Their toys include stylophones, glockenspiels, mood theremin, korg vocoders, omnichords, melodica, Fisher Price tape decks and acoustic guitars.
Spaceships was formed in 2006 by UK electronica musician Rob Maddison, who, over the years, has collaborated with dozens of different members. The band has performed as a Rob-only solo project and a group jam of up to eight different musicians. Other regular members include Ben James, Rob Yunioshi, Helen Maltby and Tim Maddison. Recently the band appeared on BBC Radio 1, BBC 6's music show,and the BBC Radio Nottingham's new music show, >em>The Beat. They've appeared on numerous compilations, including ones released by underground labels in Berlin and Japan and one titled Indie Circuit, which was released by Universal. They've also released a self titled EP.
The band has been asked to play the famous Glastonbury Festival in June, official dates are still forthcoming.
twogroove blog spaceships interview
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Past, Present, Future: Spaceships are Cool Thursday, January 28th, 2010 Share I am a fan of hon...Past, Present, Future: Spaceships are Cool
Thursday, January 28th, 2010
I am a fan of honesty. So when I saw the band name “Spaceships Are Cool”, I said “yes, that is a true statement, spaceships are cool”. Although the awesome band name would have been enough to get me to do an interview, it just so happens that Spaceships Are Cool have some great music. It’s Nintendeo meets 70’s UK pop. While there are blips and bleeps to be had, the real heart of the music comes from the soft, harmonic vocals and acoustic guitar. It’s an introspective vocal pop group in a NASA wrapper, and I love it.
Not only is the music fun and interesting, it also sounds like they have a blast at their live shows. From the interview below: Their shows feature “bright orange spacesuits, cartoon animation, astronaut marionettes and free flying saucer candy.” Sign me up!
Download the track below, read the interview and click the Spaceships Are Cool banner below to hear some more music.
The sounding post review
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I picked up this EP from the radio station to review thinking it was going to be a joke band playing...I picked up this EP from the radio station to review thinking it was going to be a joke band playing keytars and singing about PacMan (you think I’m kidding, but there’s a precedent - Mr. Pacman). I was very pleasantly surprised to find a delightful bastard-love-child from Beck and Of Montreal encapsulated in this short but very rich EP. It’s 5 songs long but features examples of both simple poppy songs and deeply layered tracks. The album as a whole leaves an impression of a band(-ish) that doesn’t take themselves overly seriously, but also has a strong understanding of what they feel music should be with the ability to write and record precisely what they want. I use the term ‘band’ as that’s what the promotional material makes them out to be. In reality they’re only a band when performing live. When recording it’s just Rob Maddison of Nottingham, England.
I enjoyed this album a substantial amount, particularly tracks 3 and 4, “This Fond Farewell” and “Gingerbread Houses”. “This Fond Farewell” is an excellent electro-indie ballad which showcases the band’s ability to layer its mayhem. “Gingerbread Houses” takes a much more simplistic route as it meanders across the tune. Add in tracks 1, 2, and 5 to get a complete and worthwhile album: “Let Things Go” is what you wish NES music would have been, featuring very cool guitar and synth lines layered heavily with staccato drums while fading in and out of more melodic interludes; “Strawberry Knickers” is simple but fun (you can listen by following the first BBC link below); and “Sooner or Later “ is a saccharine-sweet melody that deserves to be played with a black turtleneck sweater and cappuccino.
DJ’s – play any of the first four tracks on air. Baristas – play track 5 on the coffee shops loudspeakers.
Will I play it on my show? Yes. RIYL – Beck, Of Montreal.
Leftlion EP review
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Spaceships Are Cool (AKA Rob Maddison) are Nottingham's prime exponents of gorgeous dollops of delig...Spaceships Are Cool (AKA Rob Maddison) are Nottingham's prime exponents of gorgeous dollops of delightful indietronica that is so irresistible and moreish, they must have found a cheeky way of slipping MSG into the music. This eponymous EP takes all the best bits of artists like the Flaming Lips, Beck, Dntel and lashings of 60s psych-rock to create a world where blips and bleeps collide head-on with occasional I Am The Walrus-esque stream-of-consciousness lyrics, especially noticeable on Gingerbread House. Let Things Go is full of clattering drums and dark melodies that demonstrate just what a great talent is on show here. This EP, along with a collaboration with Mr Bird entitled The Tokyo EP, is throughly recommended.
current UK spaceships setlist is 35-45 mins as a 7 piece band.
extendable up to 1hr.
We were here
Fall in the city
This will be my dream
Shake it up!
Other live formats:
Solo & 4 piece acoustic shows
5 piece folktronic shows (laptop beats n bleeps. acoustic guitars, violin, synths).
There are no upcoming dates at this time.