Thursday, February 19, 2009

Nerd News in Brief

This week, Nintendo announced that the DSi will be released stateside on April 5th. About this news I am ambivalent.

Do I need another Nintendo DS? I do not.

Do I want a new handheld that offers bigger screens and more robust wi-fi at the expense of the GBA slot and with the bloated inclusion of a shitty camera and useless media playback features? Not particularly.

Will I buy the damn thing? Probably.

Apparently, I am what's wrong with the American electronics marketplace.

  • Blame the Victim: This week’s edition of Nerd Ink is brought to you by rage. And also the dark side.
  • Andre the Giant Has a Posse: Likewise, MC Lars has a street team. Andre’s posse is currently full-up, but Lars has plenty of room on his team, so why not join? You’ll get access to promotional materials and exclusive goodies, and all it costs is a little nerd love.
  • Yes, I Realize my Twitter Avatar is Black: Our friends in New Zealand are currently being threatened by a "Guilt Upon Accusation" law which gives ISPs the right to discontinue service based solely on the mere insinuation of copywrite infringement. There are lots of ways to help spread the word, but perhaps the most fun is by taking part in Creative Freedom’s remix project. Details and remix kits are available here.
  • Dead, and He Ain’t Ever Coming Back: mc chris recently announced that every song in his back catalog is now available for your listening pleasure on his site. He’s also added a ton of fan remixes, and his album skits are also on the way.
  • The Semi-Official Definition: My friend Snipe attended last week’s NYC screening of Nerdcore Rising. She dug it so much that she posted her own review. Give it a read, and, while you’re over there, give the lady some love!
  • She’s the DJ, He’s the Rapper: Thanks go out to Zen Albatross for turning me on to my favorite collaboration since the MC Lars/YTCracker album. It’s a new 8bitpeople release that pairs Coova and Bud Melvin, and, of course, it’s freely available.
  • As Yet Unattained: A second Nerd Merit Badge has been released. This one celebrates the famed (and elusive) "Inbox 0," and can be ordered right this very second.
  • Bromance: I have a musical man-crush on Shael Riley, but that’s okay. Lots of people do. Shael is currently gearing up for a mini-tour, and is practicing his singing whilst playing. Check out his one-man rehearsal of The Grammar Club’s "Bank Holiday" here, then grab an MP3 from Shael’s music site.
  • Still Holding: Shael has also leaked some more information concerning his forthcoming solo album Hold Person. Recently he revealed that he had secured Canadian hip-hopper Jesse Dangerously for a collab. In case that was somehow unclear, this is fucking awesome.
  • I Take Credit: Likewise, int eighty of Dual Core just revealed that he has joined the bill with Shael at Baba Budans in Cincinnati on March 25th. I’ve also been told that this show, while 21+, is free!
  • Rock It: Speaking of, Dual Core has added a lot of great new content to their site. You’ll find a new pair on non-album tracks free for the taking, as well as two new videos. The first is from their recent ShmooCon performance, and the second, also from ShmooCon, includes two freestyles and a surprise encore.
  • 8-Bit Brobee: Thanks to a tweet from GabbaFriends, I have spent the week rocking out to this chiptune cover of the Yo Gabba Gabba! song "Dancin’s Easy" by McFiredrill. Hit up 8bitcollective for a free copy.
  • Where Everyone Has Gone Before: Church pointed me toward a trio of Star Trek stories this week. They fall easily within the realms of love, lust, and… whatever the fuck this is.
  • Closer Than Expected: Also from Church comes a link to "The Search Engine Rap Battle." It defies description, so just watch for yourself.
  • Another Rap Oddity: From my pal Antisoc comes this gangsta-ized remake of the traditional theme from The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. Somewhere, Will Smith weeps. Into a handkerchief made out of money, no doubt.
  • Save Ginny: Harry and the Potters have a pair of gigs lined up this weekend. On Friday, February 20th, catch them at Williams College in Williamstown, MA, and on Saturday the 21st, at Bard College in Red Hook, NY. Also, until February 22nd, the band will be doing the unthinkable and actually selling t-shirts via their Web site, so even if you can’t make it out to see them you can still snag one.
  • Snake Handler: Also on the Wizard Rock tip, Nagini has released some new music for free through MySpace. Check out her recent blog post to snag the Twin Cores duets album and a pair of 12 Foot Blues demos. Much thanks to Ant for the pointer.
  • Rawk: And while you’re perusing the MySpace, hit up the new profile of nerdcore producer/remixer killsaly’s band, Merkava. Currently, the page only features a few synth-and-drum demos from last summer, but new stuff, featuring guitar and vocals as well, is on the way.
  • Shiny: We’ll close out this week’s NNIB with a beautiful new video for Marian Call's "In the Black" from her album Got to Fly. It’s by YouTuber macanguish, and feature’s some soulful, sorrowful footage from Firefly/Serenity synched with one of my favorite tracks from the album. Watch. Comment. Share.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

The Double-Ewe Bee

One of the most amazing things about Nerdapalooza – in addition, of course, to the music and geeky fellowship – was all the stuff that we attendees came home with.

Visual artist KiwiX was the first to acquire an event poster signed by all the featured acts. My photographer friend Denika captured some simply phenomenal photos of the on- and off-stage antics. Schaffer the Darkord and Captain Dan were two of many who got to talk Blender magazine. My best friend Josh got to meet and befriend int eighty of Dual Core. MisterB impregnated a local*. In short, be it a handsome keepsake, a cool story, or a bastard child, everybody came home with something special.

Among my most prized post-‘Palooza possessions are my hand-labeled Zombies! Organize!! demo, Anthony’s press pass (we all traded), my STD and Krondor Krew t-shirts, an enormous collection of free CDs, my own signed event poster (I totally ripped off Kiwi’s idea), and a literal trunk-load of stuff from my pals Uncle Monsterface that includes, but is not limited to, a fine selection of Marty’s sock puppet portraits.

But one of the more rare and wonderful pieces of swag I accrued was a Nerdapalooza special edition ashcan comic written by the Wordburglar**. It details the exploits of Snakor, former snake-themed terrorist turned restaurant manager, and it is one of the most delightfully ridiculous things I’ve ever read. It’s the 80s G.I. Joe with the thinly-veiled Reaganism excised and a healthy dose of self-depreciation inserted in its stead.

Thankfully, now everyone can read Snakor's Pizza in full, vibrant color, compliments of the fine folks at Arcana Comics. Burg tells me that the crew will be updating the project with a new page every Wednesday for the remainder of the year. And the plan is to release the book in a proper physical form at a later date.

Take a look, and spread the love.

*This is simply a joke in poor taste. MisterB did not actually knock up a Floridian at Nerdapalooza.
**Burg is Canadian. Have I mentioned that I really like Canada?

Monday, February 16, 2009

Couples Only

Yesterday evening, the venerable Shael Riley coordinated the second installment of his Doubles’ Dash short-form collaborative songwriting parties. The gist of this hybrid contest/creative freak-out is to motivate teams of two to write and record a lyrical pop song in the span of three hours. This is facilitated via IRC, and, at the end of the event, each of the participant teams share their songs and vote for a winner.

Shael posted all three of the resulting tracks to his LiveJournal last night, and, as they are both freely available and kick-ass, you are encouraged to check them out.

My man Projekt Zero, who presently resides in the storied city of Charlestown in my own home state, found himself abandoned by his partner, but soldiered on to produce "Shael's Going to Fuck Me Up the Ass With No Lube and It's Going to Hurt," a song that is, in truth, far less violent and abrasive than the title would imply.

Shael Riley and Jiggin Jon T, also known as Team Taking a Year Off to Travel, created the catchy and obviously Randy Newman-inspired "Pros and Cons."

And lastly, Injury (who you may remember from a recent collab with Shael) and Suzumebachi clandestinely added Sgt. Rama to their Team Bisquick to craft "Percent Caret Open Parenthesis," which I am told is a parody of Shael’s own "Snow, Love and Sludge."

Listen well, and think back on all the significantly less interesting shit you were doing last night between the hours of six and nine PM Eastern. I, for one, was watching the Gangland marathon on History Channel.