Friday, August 07, 2009

Nerd News in Brief

Looks like the family and I will be taking a bit of a vacation next week. So if things get a little quiet on this end, there's no need to send a search party. I hope.

But since I'll be away from the keyboard for a few days, I'll try and crank out a couple posts' worth of geeky goodness before I leave. Y'know, to see you through the lean times. I've got an album review lined up that I think you'll find interesting, and of course there's this week's NNIB.

Why, here it comes now!
  • I Claim Full Responsibility: Those of you who catch mc chris on his fall tour may be in for an additional surprise: I Fight Dragons! Yes, IFD has signed on to support mc this time out. Specific dates and venues are still forthcoming, but my excitement regarding this matchup is already here.
  • A Single Bound: Speaking of I Fight Dragons, Shael Riley recently released a cover of their track "No One Likes Superman Anymore." You can procure this rare jewel here.
  • The Progenitor: In other epic cover song news, Ketan did a rendition of YTCracker's "Meganerd" at an open mic night earlier this week. It occurs about 12 minutes before the end of this footage.
  • Getting Caught in the Rain of Fire: Also this week, Glenn Case laid bare the simple truth that "Escape (The Pina Colada Song)" and "Hotel California" are virtually identical. Peep game.
  • Made Sweet Love to a Manatee: Weird Al's new track parodies the style of the White Stripes, has a video from political pranksters JibJab and is about Charles Nelson Riley. Odds are you know what at least one of those three things are.
  • I Tilt on My Axis: funky49 is a champion of education. When he's not writing songs about museums, he's sending me links to other folks' songs about the Earth. A prime example is this cut from Flocabulary.
  • None of Your Business: This week my boy Beefy gave us a little taste of his forthcoming release With Sprinkles. It's kind of a different sound for Beef, but I like it!
  • Less Cliché Than Advertised: This week also saw a new drop from Ultraklystron. The Cliché Remix LP is, not surprisingly, a collection of remixes from The Fourth Estate and Opensource Lyricist. It is also, as Karl so eloquently put it, "super free."
  • They Keep You Safe: With the release of The Protomen's Act II looming – it'll drop September 8th – those freedom fighters would like to remind you that the official release show will occur on Friday, September 25th at Mercy Lounge in Nashville. In the more immediate future, catch them at Knoxville's The Midtown on August 20th, Richmond's Plaza Bowl on the 21st and Baltimore's Ottobar on the 22nd for 64Bit Genocide.
  • Having an Emo Day: UK geek rocker Dan Plus Add sent me some previews from his newest (unfinished) album earlier this week. The as-yet unnamed project seems far more focused on personal storytelling than his previous efforts, but fans of his folksy style will no doubt be pleased.
  • Tourmates: Also from across the pond comes word of an "ad-hoc tour" featuring Superpowerless, BType, and Jaylyn Coffin. UK readers who might be able to pull together some last minute gigs for the trio over the coming 3 weeks are encouraged to holler at Oliver and company (LOLs)!
  • Some Enchanted Evening: Harry and the Potters' semi-annual t-shirt sale is currently on like the proverbial neck bone. Now through August 15th, you can score a Potters shirt from the comfort of your own internetz. Also available is the band's career retrospective Priori Incantatem. Have you bought shit from a boy wizard today?
  • They Own the Publishing Rights: Church (by way of his new love TechDirt) passes on news of Harvard's recent bought of trademark trolling. Shit! Looks like Harvard now owns the phrase "trademark trolling," and I think that means I owe them 20 bucks.
  • The Tabletop Goes Digital: Also from Church comes this link to Pen, Paper & Pixel's "Tabletop Projection" project. It explains how to use a mounted digital projector to create amazingly adaptive maps for your gaming sessions.
  • Make it Stop: Apparently everyone has fallen into the "geeks vs. nerds" trap. Even AllGov. They have a new piece about the recent Medicare row that references this imaginary battle. Via a Venn diagram. Ugh.
  • You Say Tomato, I Also Say Tomato: And on the subject of everyone's new favorite buzzword, Church also directs your attention to new a "geek" article at Esquire. Then he quickly counters with a "nerd" piece from Ypulse. I think that fucker's playing both sides!
  • And Now You Know: Dear Internet, Please buy me this t-shirt. It is graph-tastic.
  • He's a Dick: Having trouble remembering the plot of the Star Trek remake? Jason of Geek Studies found this appropriate summation.
  • Legendary: I'm obviously not stalking Felicia Day closely enough, as I'm only now getting into Atom's The Legend of Neil. It stars The Guild's Sandeep Parikh and features Day as a naughty fairy. Season 2 has just launched, so it's a good time for fellow noobs to come aboard.
  • Not Tired of Them Yet: In yet another piece of post-Comic-Con coverage, MCs Lars and Frontalot talked to G4's The Feed about web comics. What? No love for Scary Go Round?
  • A Thousand Words: I know I promised no more waxing philosophical about Nerdapalooza, but int eighty posted a pic that I think really captures the heart of the event. Boo-yah.
  • For Your Perusal: I recently asked Shael Riley what the Uruk-hai read in waiting rooms. He was kind enough to break shit down for me.
  • Lords on Acid: Closing out this week is a video for Shael and his band the Double Ice Backfire: a cover called "Chinese Ninja Warrior." It's from their new release Songs From the Pit. Enjoy the cryomancy. Also the rock.

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

With Special Guest Star: Me

I've been getting a lot of interesting requests of late. And not of the typical go-fuck-yourself variety, either. No, these have been requests to guest on other blogs and podcasts, which is actually really cool. It's not like I'm exactly swimming in free time or anything, but I genuinely enjoy the opportunity to spread the nerdy gospel via exciting new avenues.

Earlier this week, for example, I joined Jarvis Slacks and Nate Kowal (of Best Gamepad Ever) on the 10 PM Podcast. Therein we talked sci-fi, videogames and even a bit about nerdcore. But mostly we laughed. It was a good time.

Should you care to experience it, hit up Jarvis's blog for the link or simply turn your iTunes in this direction.

It's like a robot-space-western-superhero-Xbox-explosion in your ear canal.

Monday, August 03, 2009

Radio Free Hipster Ep. 71: Lullabies from the Underground

I am beginning to think that my un-themed episodes are simply multi-themed. I mean, this time around we get half a set about robots, multiple references to Final Fantasy and tons of cover tunes. All unintentional, I might add!

But subject-centered or otherwise, this is a show I'm quite proud of because it covers all the bases. From nerdy rap and geek rock to bootlegs and chip music, it moves around a lot, but I find it a consistently good listen.

I sure hope you feel the same.

Download Radio Free Hipster Ep. 71: Lullabies from the Underground [hosting provided by Antisoc] Size: 47.3 MB Running Time: 51:42

Show Notes:

Intro: Baddd Spellah – "Radio Free Hipster Theme (feat. Beefy)"
Featuring the dulcet tones of Mr. Beef Thompson.

Track 1: Wordburglar – "S'up Burg"
Burg is not nerdcore, but I believe his style hits close enough to attract both that audience and more traditional heads. And, for my money, you just can't beat Canadian hip-hop.

Z's 1st interlude: "Made of win and liquid awesome."
Give Burgie's Basement a listen and tell me otherwise. I dare ya!

Track 2: ToToM – "Freight Train Control"
Dylan Mashed is one of those projects that borders on madness. I heartily approve.

Track 3: Supercommuter – "Itty Bitty Pigeons"
Let me again urge you to pre-order the CD version of Supercommuter. You'll score the MP3 version early.

Track 4: Random – "Short Circuit"
Though it's been pulled, you can still find DaChip out there. Plus, there's an additional disc of bonus cuts!

Track 5: Facts of Life dialog / The Four Eyes – "Goin' Berzerk"
Why did all the episodes concerning sex always cast poor Natalie in precarious situations?

Track 6: I KILL PXLS – "My Final Fantasy"
I KILL PXLS has lots of free tracks available at his site. Peruse them at your leisure.

Track 7: Wilbert Roget II – "I Can Still Do Vibrato"
One of the many perks of having a pal like Shael is getting weird-ass album recommendations like Songs to Giraffe.

Track 8: Uncle Monsterface – "Toxic"
I understand Monsterface Industries is working on a new project at present. Color me excited.

Z's 2nd interlude: "I am a man who loves him some Facts of Life."
The facts of life are all about me. Or so says the theme song.

Track 9: Americans UK – "If You See Us Running, You Better Run With Us "
I'm heavily into AUK right now. They've got the same sort of musical appeal as, say, The Buzzcocks (with maybe a pinch of Leatherface). Plus, the lads are comic nerds, so that earns 'em extra points.

Track 10: Stevie Kincade – "Aquareous"
Aussie rappers join Canadian and Seattle-area rappers as the perfect trifecta of genuine hip-hop and unbridled nerdiness.

Track 11: DJ Schmolli – "The Trooper Believer"
Man, this song is gonna piss Maiden fans off! ;)

Track 12: Bit Shifter – "The World Has Turned and Left Me Here"
I am enamored with what grace Bit Sifter slides in some "Wave of Mutilation" into this track.

Track 13: Kwikspell – "Ode to Umbridge"
Kwikspell's debut is a little rough around the edges production-wise (which I'd argue actually adds an interesting garage aesthetic), but it shows some really clever songwriting. Plus, she collaborates with what has got to be the best named Wrock outfit ever: Statutory Snape!

Z's final interlude: "An exciting new way to leave feedback."
Feel free to use the widget in the sidebar to leave me a Google Voice message.

Track 14: Dual Core "Here to Help" / Beefy's voicemail
I actually got to meet Remington Forbes a couple months back. Seeing him and eighty on stage together was awe-inspiring. I will always consider him to be Dual Core's unofficial third member.

Beefy was nice enough to break in my Google Voice mailbox last weekend, so I happily included his message at the end of the show.

That Beefy, he's m'boy.

I've already got a few things cooking for upcoming episodes. I've invited MadHatter to come on and give me a Nerdapalooza recap, as well as drop some knowledge regarding Scrub Club. I've also got plans for another romantically-themed show, and my friend Cromer had requested that I again let my kids help me put together an ep.

Not sure which come first, and I reserve the right to get sidetracked, but those are all show ideas that currently tickle my fancy. If you've got something you'd like to hear, don't be afraid to speak up. I live for your input.