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02 January 2016 @ 01:47 pm
Music is pretty cool  
I'm sure that comes as news to none of you.

I was going to write about this in my New Year's Retrospective, but since I forgot it gets its own post. One of the other changes I made in 2015 is that I started listening to new music again. I only listened to the radio for about two years during the 90s when I was mowing my parents' lawn and needed something to listen to, so that's the sum total of my exposure to pop music. Once I went away to university and found Napster, I developed a taste of goth and industrial spurred by buying a copy of "Music from the Succubus Club," probably after seeing an ad for it in a Vampire: the Masquerade supplement, and that's what I listened to for a while. That fell away over time, though, and by the time I was living in Japan I didn't really listen to any music at all other than the ambient zone music when we'd play World of Warcraft. Even on my two hour each-way commute, I mostly slept.

That changed when I started working at the AMA and learned I could use headphones. Not too long after that, I found 8bit Peoples, an online repository of free chiptunes albums, and that got me into chiptunes. And then I developed a podcast addiction, and a few of the podcasts I added were music ones. I currently listen to:
  • The Irish and Celtic Music Podcast: I used to listen to a lot of Celtic music, but it fell almost completely out of favor in the last decade. This is still probably my least favorite of the music podcasts I listen to, but I've found quite a few gems.

  • This Week in Chiptune: When I found this, I went back over the course of a couple months of commutes and listened to every single back episode. Love those bleeps and boops.

  • Group Therapy with Above and Beyond: I think this showed up in the top podcasts category and I subscribed to it on a whim. There's a lot of stuff that's obvious way better to dance to than to listen to on the L, but I've found some surprisingly (to me) good songs, like this one or this one or this one. I skip past the four-on-the-floor stuff and don't miss it.

  • Space Radio: This updates only irregularly and has a bit of a variable quality, but I like it when it comes out. However, it did inspire me to find:

  • Communion After Dark: This one is amazing, and is probably another one that I'll go through the entire archives of. It's like being back at Dracula's Ball, and this podcast reminded me that bands like Diary of Dreams, Beborn Beton, Neuroticfish, Suicide Commando, et al still exist and are still making music. They have a relatively wide reach, though--this song showed up on the podcast and ended up being launched straight on to my cyberpunk playlist.

  • Steampunk Radio: I have no idea how this is "streampunk" or if it's ever going to continue after the first few episodes, but what I found is pretty neat. Like, this song--how is that "steampunk"? I mean, it's really good, but does it fit the advertising? Not sure about that.
That gives me plenty of weekly new music exposure.

Also, Bandcamp. It's not actually any different than poking around any other digitial music service, but for some reason I've taken to it more. I've found great stuff like Halfont 2 by William Kage (guy composes music using the soundfonts of 16-bit games, so they sound like lost tracks), I Am the Night by Perturbator (another for the cyberpunk playlist), The Spoony Bards by The Spoony Bards (shoutout to stephen_poon!), Transmission Lost by Sjellos (I have a whole selection of albums that are basically low hums, groaning metal, and space noises set to music), Tome I by Erang (Bandcamp introduced me to Dungeon Synth as a genre)...I could go on. You can see everything I've bought here if you want an example of my modern musical taste.

I've also gotten heavily into Overclocked ReMix (edit:and its podcast) again now that they're posting more. They're a big chunk of what I listen to on my commute if I don't have any podcast updates, and I jumped on their Patreon as soon as they set it up--which also introduces me to new music, since one of the perks is that I get a free album every month from the selection on Overclocked Records, not all of which are video game related. Of what I've gotten, I can recommend the Tale of the Rat King OST by Tom Miller and Quixotica by .mpegasus. I admit, I haven't listened to as many of these as I should, but I just recently sorted them into their own playlist and once I put them on my phone, I can go through them.

This turned out longer than I thought. I guess it's a good thing I gave it its own post?
Current Mood: excitedexcited
Current Music: Deux Ex - Neonature (nervous_testpilot OC ReMix)