the Deadfly Ensemble

the Deadfly Ensemble


Threatrical story-telling music that's been marinated in the dusty attic of a haunted house. Best spun on wax cylinders or on the turntable of a serviceable Victrola.


The Deadfly Ensemble is the latest project from Cinema Strange frontman Lucas Lanthier. The idea behind the D.E. is to more fully develop songs that tell stories and are theatrical and operatic in nature. The music and lyrics combine to illustrate all the dynamics of an interesting story, with joy, tragedy, rage and frustration all taking turns in the spotlight. The D.E. has performed on both coasts of the US, Asia, Mexico and Europe, building a fan-base of artists and theatrical people looking for more of themselves in the music they listen to.


Bruise Animals

Written By: Lucas Lanthier

Bruise Animals

Part one:
"Evenings with mother tend to be discouraging; I always end up bruised. Evenings with father frighten me; all the animals will come to see where I've been abused. With bars of fragile bone and teeth I enclose a hundred birds and beasts... we sway and swoon. At night they howl and scream at me! They would all much rather be set free beneath the dull, throbbing light of a blue-black moon."

Part two:
"One upon my thigh has wings! He flies and sings! His face is purple! Watch me twist my mouth in pain; I've sat upon some beast again! Twice since Thursday, I've sat bleeding out upon the back step, reading. Apparently I have the only broken-skin menagerie.

“Eyes and gills distinguish certain crimson epidermal oceans. Sunlight on my skin is dim and withered; in my zoo it's night!

“There's a flock upon my back, their beaks are long and cruel and black! They preen and flap with ruined capillaries; yes, there's blood, in fact. One around my throat makes sound. He screams against gray, early morning. Red and bending, never ending... He's some sort of snake, I've found.

“And eight legged toads and lambies in rows and pink-kitten circles of lilies and roses... An ant-farm awry under lavender skies... all of this smeared on my thin-beaten skin!”

Horse On the Moor

Written By: Lucas Lanthier

And his tears mingled with the still waters of the peat bog...

"I brought you something darling!"

And he saw clay fingers protruding from the mud!

"I love you still!"

"My love liked to ride, so I'm giving her a horse's head. The rest is made of wood, but it hardly matters, 'cause she's dead! And my love had an eye for cameos and feathers for lapels. I don't have those, but I have a lot of pretty silver bells."

"My love wore her hair in a darling mess of golden braids... To help her under there, I'm sending down one of her maids. And my love took her tea from a light-blue china service, and so that got buried first so she could calm herself in case of nervousness."


The D.E. has released one album so far, entitled "An Entire Wardrobe of Doubt and Uncertainty". (Trisol, 2006) The D.E. has made two compilation appearances, and has MP3s available to preview on

Set List

Deadfly Ensemble sets are variable depending on the number of performers. Lanthier often plays solo acoustic shows, but has more flexibility with the full ensemble. Besides all songs featured on the recordings, the D.E. will typically throw in an odd Cab Calloway cover and may very well perform some dramatic readings from the English dictionary.