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by drew

Posts Tagged ‘music

LoadingReadyRun: My gateway drug

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I often start on a train of thought and, as it progresses, my mind goes on different tangents and rabbit trails until several minutes later when I realize that my brain is totally off topic and I try to retrace the path back to the root of the thought tree. After doing this for about the third time today, I decided to do the same thing with my current interests, how I stumbled upon the things that I like, and it turns out that LoadingReadyRun has been far and away one of the biggest influences on my multimedia life.

In a more basic sense, I suppose it stems from internet comedy in general. The root of this tree is IRL, and its children are online. The farthest back I can trace in a continuous path is back in 2008 when a couple of my real-life friends told me about a YouTube sketch comedy group called Balloon Shop who used to attend their high school. Back then, we thought they were flippin’ hilarious, but really, they weren’t and only got less so. Before becoming disenfranchised with them, one of their members posted a link on his Facebook to the Zero Punctuation review of Gears of War 2 on the Escapist in January of ’09. I thought it was pretty funny and decided to click around on the other videos on the site, when I found Unskippable. Watching that, I noticed that the voices seemed familiar and clicked the link to their site, whereupon I recalled that I had seen LRR’s “Fun With Microwaves” video back in 2008. And from there, things went squirrelly.

An archive binge ensued, and I continued to keep up with LoadingReadyRun as they released new videos and created new series. I paid special attention to CommodoreHustle and the Phailhaus, and also started listening to their podcast. When I realized that they were very much not dicks and actually had very good tastes, I began trying out things they recommended.  Here is a short list of things I experienced through the direct influence of LRR: In Bruges, Persona 4, Magic: the Gathering, Metal Gear Solid, Andrew WK, Child’s Play charity, Yu-Gi-Oh: Abridged, poutine, and more. I even gained a newfound appreciation for Sir Mix-a-Lot’s magnum opus, Baby Got Back.

But the amazing part is that these direct children also led me to secondary interests. The unholy gangbang of Persona 4, Yu-Gi-Oh: Abridged, and LRR’s personal recommendation led me to commit an atrocity I’d never dreamt possible: I actually watched anime. And not just the little bits of Yu-Gi-Oh and Dragonball Z I saw on Toonami after Ed, Edd, & Eddy when I was a kid, Neon Genesis Evangelion, Code Geass, and FLCL. Don’t worry, I haven’t turned into some otaku monstrosity or anything, but rather through LoadingReadyRun, I have experienced many different genres of entertainment I would have otherwise never even considered. They’ve really opened me up to a wider sample of culture, given me a better appreciation for the world around me, and simply entertained me in dozens of ways.

So thank you, LoadingReadyRun, for helping shape who I am today. You’ve led me to numerous culturally enriching sources of  entertainment and given me an assload of laughs. Keep doing the awesome stuff you do.

Unrelated, but I’ve written another article for HardyDev on the nominees for the Best AGS Game of 2010 award, which astute readers will notice is pretty much the same article I wrote last year with some of the names changed around.

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Written by Drew Wellman

02/23/2011 at 12:31 AM

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Grab Bag

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Let’s have some structure:

  1. Video games: I recently beat Mass Effect, and let me say that it is definitely one of the best games I’ve ever played. It gives COD4 a run for its money as my favorite Xbox game. Sure, it has a lot of flaws (annoying inventory system, the MAKO vehicle, Unreal engine 3), but it more than makes up for them with an incredible story, truly lovable characters, the best dialog system I’ve ever encountered, and more than tolerable combat. Go buy it now. Other games I’ve been playing recently: Left 4 Dead 2, Saints Row 2, Spider-Man 2, and Modern Warfare 2 (see a pattern?). All of them are really good, but none of them are quite as epic as Mass Effect. I’m planning on getting the collector’s edition (EDIT: For the sequel in January, that is), which is something I’ve never done.
  2. Computer problems: If you’ve read my twitter in the past two weeks or heard my screams of anguish (audible radius: 2000 km), you’ll no doubt know that my computer is friggin’ screwed up. I have nearly exhausted my options for fixing it, but I don’t think it’s too late yet. After some preparation, I plan to back up all my essential stuff twice, including app licenses, and do a complete format and reinstall. I’m probably going to end up doing this for both my Mac and Windows partition, so I’m going to use this opportunity to upgrade to Windows 7 and increase the size of my Boot Camp partition. I honestly don’t know why I’m upgrading, since the last 3 times I’ve upgraded my computers I’ve wrought nothing but sorrows.
  3. Christmas: I hate Christmas music. I like Christmas, but I hate the music more than anything. Other things I hate more than anything include the cold, rain, final exams, and media whores. Why I’m in Memphis during the winter and why I still have yahoo.com bookmarked is beyond me. But once again breaking my own rule of never announcing anything until it’s done, I have plans for literally 9 different thing for my holiday break. Instead of breaking my rule outright, I’ll just bend it a little by giving the first letter of each: M, C, A, K, F, T, P, S, and B. Guess away.

Written by Drew Wellman

12/05/2009 at 12:18 AM

Poll: Which is more evil, American Idol or Dancing with the Stars?

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Written by Drew Wellman

09/03/2009 at 4:17 PM

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FFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUU-

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More dang crap freakin heck! The hard disk on Olan, my Macbook Pro, as they say it in the industry, totally crapped out on me! I was minding my own business, watching some videos on YouTube when all of a sudden, my HD makes some weird noises and my entire system freezes up! Long story short, I couldn’t fix it and now Olan’s at the apple store. At least I’ve been keeping regular backups. I also like to think that my computer committed harakiri because I was watching an Aerosmith video. Now before you say anything, Wikipedia led me there. While looking up some stuff about Lost, I found out that the dude who plays Sawyer had a cameo in their video for Cryin’ but apparently my computer didn’t like that idea.

In other news, I friggin ordered my friggin Xbox 360! Friggin yes! I am quite happy, except, really, I’m not. My computer problems as well as finals have succeeded in dragging me down to a more or less neutral state. In short, I have become comfortably numb.

Written by Drew Wellman

05/05/2009 at 6:40 PM

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Album Review: Alchemy Index – Fire and Water, by Thrice

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My vote for best thing in freakin’ ever: Fire and Water by Thrice.

This ‘double EP’ is the first half of the Alchemy Index and, in my opinion, the slightly better of the two releases. It’s pretty much amazing. Pretty much every dang song is a 5-star effort, with incredible writing and performance. The album is divided into two halves themed around the ‘elements’ fire and water, respectively. The songs fire side are more intense and heavy, relying on unusual time signatures and impassioned lyrics for its power. The water side however, features slower, melodic songs that employ drum machines, piano, and synthesizers. These songs are emotionally gripping and beautifully preformed, arguably  some of the best I’ve ever heard.
In short, it’s freakin’ amazing.

Here’s a link to buy on iTunes. It’s even DRM-free. Go on, do it.

Click here to purchase Fire and Water on iTunes.

Written by Drew Wellman

03/14/2009 at 5:36 PM

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Song for a Girl

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For the first time as a band, Trees Without Faces has a (*gasp!*) deadline!

I know, scary. March 29th, I think. That’s Anna’s birthday. Anna is this girl who Matt wants to write a song about; he’s actually been meaning to get around to it for a while. We’ve actually started on it already, we have a structure and a feel. But Matt has just now begun the lyrics and I don’t know if Colby’s even in the loop at all. The worst part is that the song needs to be written, recorded, mixed, and slapped out on a CD by her birthday, and that means I’m gonna have to lug my drums all the way to CBC and set up all the crap to make them sound good. But I also have to go buy new heads for them, another thing I’ve been meaning to getting around to doing. Plus, with Matt’s work schedule, getting it recorded at all is gonna be a challenge. We’re really gonna have to work overtime.

In other news, it’s Friday the 13th. Again. Whoopee.

Written by Drew Wellman

03/13/2009 at 12:36 AM

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