Friday, August 21, 2009

Nerd News in Brief

It's always great when a independent, intrinsically geeky musical community gets some major media attention. Yet it's all the more crushing when that spotlight, rather than shine on the true face of the scene, instead chooses to highlight only what it wants to see.

Such is the case with TIME's recent piece on the Kind of Bloop chiptune tribute album. Therein, the interviewing journalist misquotes (the ever-living fuck out of) artist Shnabubula.

Check out the whole story, and help spread the word.
  • Hold the Beef: Beefy has just launched a new BBS at his site Mr. Thompson states that these forums will be a well-mannered and low-key hangout for fans of nerdcore, JALP and other flavors of geekery. Join up and feel the love.
  • Twice Removed: Superpowerless has been mad prolific this week. His YouTube channel has been ablaze with new solo content and the triumphant return of Scared of Dinosaurs, but most impressive is his remix of The Grammar Club cover of Jonathan Coulton's classic "Code Monkey." Can you say meta?
  • Truth Hits Everybody: New info from the Centers for Disease Control suggests that most gamers are old, fat and miserable. This, however, does not explain the wealth of 12-year-olds calling me a fag on Xbox Live.
  • Know the Name: MC Lars and K.Flay have dropped a new video for the debut single from their Single and Famous EP. It's the title track, and it will likely make you call your ex and demand all your shit back.
  • Sock It!: This week, a cat got over a million Twitter followers. To commemorate this auspicious occasion, MC Frontalot wrote a new song. I could get all emo over this, but Front wrote a song about me ages ago!
  • Ultra-Mega OK: Megaran has pitched a panel idea for SXSW 2010 entitled "Video Games and Hip-Hop: Making the Connection." Go vote it up at PanelPicker and help drag the gaming industry further away from shitty soundtracks!
  • It's a Party: mc chris will be celebrating his birthday this year at Atlanta's Dragon*Con. RSVP to let him know how many Yoda cupcakes to bring – the party is Star Wars-themed – and to volunteer for the decorating committee.
  • Nerds, Gender and Introversion: Church points you in the direction of this Washington City Paper post concerning why nerds can be so damn sexist, then Matt counters with this Bitch Magazine article about gender in the (heavily female-slanted) communities of Wrock and Twi-rock. Lastly, Jason completes the cultural hat-trick with this Comics 212 piece about the new "post-otaku" movement.
  • My Hero: Also from Matt comes fantastic news for all of my brothers and sisters who are, like me, shit-scared of the undead. When the zombie apocalypse ultimately arrives, math may be on our side!
  • Kick Back: For those who have been sitting on their hands with regard to Dual Core's newest masterpiece, please be aware that Next Level is now available from the Amazon MP3 store. You're really running out of reasons not to buy it.
  • Maja League: Once again our boy Maja finds himself on the receiving end of some good press. This time southwestern MC made an appearance on his local FOX affiliate. Check out this vlog of the event on his YouTube channel.
  • RAWK!: And while you're getting your YouTube on, be sure to check out P4KO's rocked up cover of the Street Fighter II credits song ("Ready to Fight"). You can also score an MP3 version of the track if you like. And you will like.
  • Gonna Make You Sweat: One final piece of necessary YouTubery comes from our sock puppet pals Uncle Monsterface. They are gonna whip that ass into shape with some "Sweat Sexxxy." And you can rock out with the guys themselves this Sunday at the Coney Island Museum. It's their last show of the summer, so be sure to come out!
  • Legendary: Closing us out this week is another great piano piece from Kento. This time around he's playing a lengthy Zelda medley with the help of randomly drawn title and mood cards. It's a very cool concept that I don't think has received the proper attention as of yet. Give it a look-see.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Live to Fight

There are many places where I expect to encounter The Grammar Club. Strip bars. Red-light districts. Prison. But one place I never anticipated running across them, or at least their music, is in a promo video for Australian mixed martial arts. I stand corrected.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

NerdRockstar Wants to Give You a PS3

Typically, when one is vying for a handsome prize in a random drawing, one keeps his fucking trap shut so as not to further decrease his chances of winning. But you know what? I'm not gonna do that. In fact, I am gonna spread the word and encourage all of you to toss your names in the proverbial hat as well. 'Cause I am cool like that.

Many of you no doubt caught my mention of geeky clothier NerdRockstar last week. Well, today I again invoke the name for a trio of wonderful reasons. Which I will now innumerate:

First, NerdRockstar has just rolled out a brand new t-shirt design for my Janglish-slangin' brother Maja. It's a take on the classic Sega logo, and uses the same font as the famed "Nerdcore is Not Dead" design. Exciting shit, no?

Even better is that the fact that NR's Jason has challenged himself to offer a new shirt design every day for the next month! His Thing-a-Day program thumbs its nose as Coulton by kicking out brand new products at breakneck speed. Already available are designs for Portal aficionados and those clever Steampunks.

And there was one other thing too.

What was it?

Oh yeah, NerdRockstar is giving away a goddamn PS3! One of the new slim ones! For free!

As the crew continues its mission to spread the word about the shop, they are turning to the community and rewarding their efforts. Simply buying any piece of merch from the virtual storefront or proclaiming your love for the site via your social network of choice nets you an entry into the drawing, and multiple entries are encouraged. Peep the blog for full details, and then do your best to win Sony's newest multimedia monster.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

While I Was Out

I am back! And I have returned with yet another pebble of personal truth. (In addition to a metric ton of sand in my ass crack.)

The nature of this revelation? I am not particularly good at vacationing.

You see, my regular day-to-day life is pretty chill. I have a great wife, two wonderful kids, a job that's annoying far less than half the time and a pair of blogs/podcasts that are more enjoyable to me than they have any right to be. In short, things are typically kinda low key. Stuff is fairly relaxed. Shit is pretty sweet.

Now contrast this with vacation, an unsavory event during which I am beholden to attempt packing an entire year's worth of relaxation – relaxation in this case meaning non-stop movement from dusk to dawn – into a scant week.

Surely you see my point.

The strange thing is that while I was away "relaxing," the nerdy world went right along spinning. Indeed, no sooner had I set out than things commenced a-poppin'. Particularly on the new release front, there have been a number of interesting developments.

The rock opera rebellion that is The Protomen's Act II is so close that you can almost taste it. But should you prefer to experience music via a more traditional sense, perhaps you should turn your attention to the recent leak of "Light up the Night." The commander himself describes it as "the first glimpse of the second half of Act II," but I'd simply say it's another exemplary effort from our heroes.

Meanwhile, from the soggy streets of Seattle comes word of the long-awaited debut album by People Within. Fronted by Optimus Rhyme alumnus Broken English, People Within meld hip-hop, jazz-funk and punk into an unbelievable musical menagerie. Though the official release date is set for September 12th, I was lucky enough to score a preview copy. I'll be sure to toss some tracks into forthcoming podcasts so as to acclimate the uninitiated to the new sound of the Pacific Northwest.

But certainly the timeliest of news concerns today's release of the 7-song MC Lars and K.Flay EP Single and Famous. Due to my out-of-townedness I only downloaded my review copy last night, but it's already managed to insinuate itself into a perpetually packed song rotation. It's very much the spiritual successor to the Lars and YTCracker collab The Digital Gangster LP as it's another musical expression of friendship and fun, but don't feel like you have to take my word for it. The EP is available at a sliding price point – another similarity to the DGLP – so go ahead and pick it up in any of its varied forms.

Savvy fans will also notice talk of a Lars/K.Flay/YT tour, information regarding which I will try to secure before my review of Single and Famous hits the interwebz.