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Q&A with Black Tape for a Blue Girl's Sam Rosenthal

Amid the procession of storm troopers, sci-fi celebs and librarian types letting their hair down in Slave Leia metal bikinis, the long-standing goth icon brings a little class to Dragon*Con 2010



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Black Tape for a Blue Girl plays Sat., Sept. 4 in the Marriott Atrium Ballroom at Midnight. Rosenthal will also speak on a panel about the State of the Goth Scene Fri., Sept. 3 at 8:30 PM. The group’s vocalist Athan Maroulis will also appear on a panel titled “Gigs from Hell” on Sat., Sept. 4 at 1 p.m., and on a David Bowie panel discussion on Sun., Sept. 5 at 8:30 p.m.

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Since 1986 Black Tape for a Blue Girl has operated under the direction of principle songwriter Sam Rosenthal who runs Projekt Records, one of the country’s longest-standing indie goth labels. For those who are unfamiliar, the group is a progenitor of the ethereal “darkwave” sound, and throughout the ‘90s Black Tape... dwelt in bleak, droning washes of brittle, personal explorations — sort of a dark and dramatic counterpart to the My Bloody Valentines and Cocteau Twins of the world.

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Over the last few years the group's lineup has expanded to include a full band, and their latest release, 10 Neurotics embrace more tangible elements of songwriting, that lends itself to a stronger live performance; albeit steeped in sprockety cabaret and deep, dark narratives.

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Chad Radford: Is this the first time that Black Tape For A Blue Girl has played Dragon*Con?

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Sam RosenthalYes. I have been hearing about Dragon*Con for many years, but this is the first time it has coincided with me having a touring band ready to perform. I am really excited because this year is kind of like "Projektfest South" with Voltaire and WEEP also on the bill.

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Most of the Black Tape For A Blue Girl material that I'm familiar with is of an ethereal, drone-based nature (in the vein of The First Pain To Linger, Mesmerized by the Sirens etc.). The new material show a different side of the group, one that probably makes for a more engaging live show, especially for a Dragon*con audience.

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You are correct, that we're really not an ethereal band these days. I've created a lot of albums I love in that genre, but I definitely felt like staking out new territory. The new material from10 Neurotics is in a rock / dark cabaret vein. It is meant to be heard and performed live.




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