For this Canadian four piece, re-invention is a constant, artistically fusing genres (new wave, cabaret, punk, soundtrack, rock,) with impeccable songwriting, creating a sound that's surprisingly cohesive, intelligent,and hook-driven. Add to that an energetic, at times theatrical live show that never fails to leave their audiences with a sense that something highly original has just been witnessed. Screwtape Lewis (taken from CS Lewis'The Screwtape Letters) began in 1998 with Randl Lewis Bailer (vocal/ guitar) and drummer Boris T Blackwood braving the hostile cover bar circuit of the Canadian prairies. Their goth-inspired image and synth-fused-rock proved challenging to audiences consisting largely of malcontented cowboys and hard drinking oil workers. Forced to 'fight with their music' as a means of survival, the band began building a reputation as a fiery live act. With the addition of bassist Wax Davis, Screwtape Lewis graduated from prairie cover bars with a new sound and look inspired by David Bowie's avant-rock outfit Tin Machine. In 2001 they released their debut EP Art Rock Show to critical acclaim despite it's limited circulation. ...a totally unexpected sound...very strong first release...Gateway ...some of the most original music I've heard yet...South of Mainstream Performing steadily over the next two years, the band produced the full length Better. Stronger. Faster in late 2003. A highly conceptualized mix of Marshall McLuhan inspired themes set against punk-rock energy and new wave sophistication. Edmonton's campus station CJSR called it 'well educated, expertly crafted pop' as it climbed to #3. Outside the country, the band began getting plays in Portugal and Holland while receiving overseas sales. Back home the live show included an entire set design showing art films on banks of angel winged TV's. The following summer the band was invited to perform an unplugged set at the province's biggest festival Stage 13. To fill out the stripped down arrangements they hired keyboardist David Shepherd. Tired of the art-rock excesses of the Better. Stronger. Faster shows and surprised at how well their songs had translated with little technology or spectacle, Bailer, Blackwood and Davis took a more spartan approach. Focussing on the communicative powers of the song,the band adhered to a new discipline; if a new song didn't connect with an audience after two shows, it was unceremoniously dumped. With Shepherd now a permanent fixture, the band approached platinum selling Canadian songwriter Jay Semko (most notably of the Northern Pikes) to produce their next album. Impressed by the band's mix of originality, attention to songcraft, and lyrical intrigue, Semko agreed. His approach was to favour personality over perfection by capturing the bands signature live energy. To ensure this, all eight songs were recorded live-off-the-floor in seven days. Released in the summer of 2005, The Opulent Hum is the embodiment of a band reinvented as song-focussed students studying the traditions of Bowie, Costello, and The Clash. A band who has weathered the harsh realities of their surroundings and like any artist worth their salt, encapsulating it in song. 'This is not a queer agenda, it takes a man to wear mascara' sings Bailer with a sense of defiant amusement over a pulsing dance floor beat laced with spidery farfisa organ. And when someone watching the band for the first time remarks 'I hear some Clash in there' Screwtape Lewis knows they're doing something right.