Songs,Spend a Couple Minutes »Cyriak Videos

cyriakComputer Animations

Van found these videos by Cyriak on YouTube, starting with Kitty City. He continues to be mesmerized by them, and who can blame him with the clever animation and catchy songs?

A boy could do worse for a creative inspiration than Cyriak, who seems genuinely interesting and has been picked up by rock and rollers to make awesome videos.

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Posted on March 7, 2013

Albums »Autobahn

by Kraftwerk (1974)

Like practically every art school nerd type person in New York City, I failed to acquire Kraftwerk tickets but not for lack of trying.

Though I’ve seen images and heard tell of the performances I still prefer to sulk a little with Autobahn – an album I would describe as a soothing video game journey of sound.

Ah! I feel soothed already just listening to a few times.

The word “soundscape” in relation to music doesn’t always conjure up wonderful images to me. I usually see boring performances by friend’s boyfriends one might be guilted into seeing – but here it means great things.

It’s a shimmering, sunny day album that takes you to glossy imaginary landscapes.

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Posted on April 20, 2012

Songs »Ryu The Red Nosed Ninja

by Doctor Octoroc (2011)

I continue my week of great Christmas songs!

Eight bit cover songs seem to be the it thing lately but you won’t hear me complain about it!

Especially when artists are making once mediocre Christmas songs into listening awesomeness like Ryu the Red Nosed Ninja.

Apologies to Rudolf, but it’s just never been one of my favorites.
As a spacey, spooky video game like tune, though it’s transformed!

The entire album, 8 Bit Jesus, is available here.

A great way to support an artist directly while gaining some nerdy holiday listening cheer.

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Posted on December 20, 2011

Albums »Moon8

by Brad Smith (2011)

Dark Side of the Moon is always ripe for homage and Brad Smith’s 8 bit version, Moon8, might just be the most charming.

Maybe it’s because I grew up with Nintendo as background music a huge chunk of my youth, but I find this album wonderfully soothing and good for loop listening (which might come as a surprise since it seems like it would just be gimmicky).

Master of awesome geekdom Smith used a Nintendo Entertainment System’s sound chip to create this mini masterpiece.

Tons of fun for classic video game and/or Pink Floyd fans (which covers pretty much everyone I know).  And anyone not covered in those categories should like it because it was mentioned on NPR.


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Posted on July 28, 2011

Songs »White Horse

30 Day Song Challenge – Day Twenty Three: Most Danceable Argument Against Starting Heroin:

White Horse by Laid Back (1983)

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Posted on May 23, 2011

Songs »Countdown at 6

30 Day Song Challenge – Day Nine: Best Use of Baby Babble:

Countdown at 6 by Perrey and Kingsley

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Posted on May 9, 2011

Albums »Polyfonia

by Apparat Organ Quartet (2010)

If you took the biggest movies of the 80’s (specifically Conan the Barbarian and Beverly Hills Cop to name a couple) and set them in the future (I can tell you already like where this is going) then asked a talented avant garde orchestra with rock and roll leanings to write a score, then let video game musicians play it – you’d end up with something like Polyfonia, a bold, instrumental album from the Icelandic band Apparat Organ Quartet.

According to founder Johann Johannson, a think tank leader (of a group called Kitchen Motors) in his country, the band’s latest release is “more suited to the musical tastes of the masses” so even us common folk will find it enjoyable.

Before you think their band name was just chosen by the latest facebook game, they are in fact a quartet of organ players (plus one drummer) who use old, cast away keyboards, synthesizers, and other machinery. Fellow young and talented Icelander, Siggi Eggertsson is the artist behind the sweet cover.

Thanks to Shaun for introducing me to this unique album.

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Posted on January 12, 2011

Albums »The Switched-On Boxed Set

by Wendy Carlos (1968-1979)

It’s hard to disconnect the powerful images Kubrick created for Clockwork Orange and the moog symphonies of Wendy Carlos. This is not a bad thing, but a full day of her tunes, courtesy of Shaun who let me borrow The Switched On Box Set puts you in one technicolor and strange mind frame.

This is a well designed and comprehensive set that includes her most famous album, Switched on Bach, the first classical album to ever go platinum. A revolutionary musician who took the newest instruments of the time to create unique sound scapes of familiar classics, Wendy takes the baroque and blasts it into the space age.

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Posted on August 29, 2010

Albums »Premiers Symptomes

by Air (1997)

Probably the most mellow of Air‘s already mellow collection of albums, Premiers Symptomes consists of several singles released in the mid nineties. The tracks were created by the duo in a home studio before they had a major record deal. The title comes from a Serge Gainsbourg song featured on L’Homme a Tete de Chou, may favorite Serge album that I’ve recommended here before.

I’ve been playing this album for baby Van this week and I think he likes it. After all, what better to listen to on a warm afternoon than the simple electronic melodic soundscapes of two stylish and good looking French men?

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Posted on June 13, 2010

Albums »Tubular Bells

It was great going into Tubular Bells knowing very little. Like many of you, I was aware of Mike Oldfield's masterpiece for the beginning of the piece that was used to evoke dread in The Exorcist. If you think you're in for an hour long horror movie soundtrack, though, you are in for a surprise. Tubular Bells changes tones every few minutes and takes you from mountain top jamming, to spoken word, to folksiness to the sailors horn pipe and more.

It's one wild ride that I've had a hard time describing to people for it's sheer variety and uniqueness. I found out after a week of listening to it that the artist was a totally hip and handsome musician, friends with personal favorites John Cale and Kevin Ayers. This composition broke new ground?with what allmusic calls “arguably the finest conglomeration of off-centered instruments concerted together to form a single unique piece”.

Tubular Bells, which prompted Richard Branson to begin his own label, Virgin, after established companies dubbed the music unmarketable. It was a global success and began the whole new age music genre.

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Posted on August 17, 2009