Nerd Music Releases: January 2018 Edition

Welcome to the first Nerd Music Releases of 2018! It was a good first month with hopefully many more to come. I look forward to January every year, not only because it’s a fresh start, but also because glorious Super MAGFest occurs in the DC area. If you have not been, it’s a massive celebration of video games and video game music. It’s Nerdapalooza on steroids and HGH. It’s the promised land. (Actually, that’s Japan, but MAGFest will do.)

I got to see a lot of great acts at MAGFest, and many had brand new albums for me to enjoy and tell you about. Which means… IT’S TIME!

Wreck the System – WreckFest

Wreck the System is a high-energy foursome of talented hiphop emcees and WreckFest is an album that tells the story of a first-time convention goer and the ups, the downs, and the general craziness that occurs during a convention weekend. There are great skits and raps that cover general convention fun, partying, finding love, more partying, being a lady at conventions, and of course the dreaded con drama. (That skit was too real.)

I remember many years ago that nerdcore got slammed because a crappy music video about Dragon*Con went viral, but Wreck the System has done a tremendous job of musically telling the story of the convention experience. The fact that it weaves a continuing story throughout the album makes it all that much better.

Master Sword – Shadow and Steel

It would be odd to say that Master Sword is to Legend of Zelda what The Megas are to Mega Man, as their approaches both musically and philosophically to their respective game franchises are very different. But I make that comparison as Master Sword performs story-based arrangements of Legend of Zelda music with lyrics.

Legend of Zelda prog. metal with a badass female vocalist?! Sign me the hell up. I was thrilled to see this band perform at MAGFest and even meet them during the weekend. (What does that mean? Find out later this year.) Shadow and Steel is the first full-length album of Master Sword with epic renditions of music from Link to the Past, Ocarina of TimeWind Waker, Twilight Princess, and a final song from Breath of the Wild that I can’t get enough of. It’s about time Legend of Zelda has recieved this musical treatment and I hope to hear more from Master Sword.

Schaffer the Darklord & Friends – Friendraiser

It’s the third Schaffer the Darklord album in 4 months, but hold on this one is important. First, it’s a collection of songs from other great acts that Schaffer the Darklord appeared on a guest. But the reason this has been released is because Schaffer is raising money to help out with the legal defense for several of his friends that are currently in a lawsuit.

It’s unfortunate circumstances, but the collabs on Friendraiser are pretty great. Featured acts include nerdcore legends such as Adam WarRock, Kabuto the Python, Mega Ran, Jesse Dangerously, MC Lars, Mikal kHill, and the man who coined the term, MC Frontalot. This album not only helps some people out, but it’s also a great way to introduce new fans to nerdcore. This is a limited release and will be taken down once the money for the legal costs are reached or the case is closed. (Whichever comes first.) So get it while you can!

Oh, and and that show I had with Schaffer the Darklord a couple weeks ago? It was dope.

DJ Cutman – 2.B.A Mixtape

I love me some DJ Cutman. What he’s done with video game music and dance music, making his GameChops label a massive success, and elevating so many fellow producers in the process; I will always respect him for that and all the hard work he has put in. Now he is doing something a a little different with 2.B.A Mixtape.

To make it quick, DJ Cutman has performed all over. He’s done very well at conventions and gaming events, but not so much in environments filled with the norms and lesser nerds. What to do? Cutman has challenged himself musically to create a dance mixtape that might be more friendly to those not like us. 2.B.A Mixtape draws influence from late 90s and early 2000s dance, and remixes some hit dance songs that Cutman has loved and all those corny songs from the early episodes of the 4Kids Pokemon dub.

The production is great; I would not expect less from Cutman. I do like some of the songs on here, particularly the ones that weren’t the 4Kids Pokemon songs. However, if you are nostalgic for that sort of thing, have at it. I hope to hear an update on how this experiment goes in front of live crowds.

Super Soul Bros – Motherlode

When Super Soul Bros announced that they were doing a full album of tributes to Earthbound and Mother series, I nearly weapt with joy. ( I kept my eyes opened just in case.) For those unaware, Super Soul Bros is my personal favorite video game band over the last two years. These guys can fucking play and it is always a treat to hear them in any situation. Their progression of melodies, the ability to deviate and improvise a jam session and get back on track and add to the music they cover, and overall mastery of their instruments; I can not overstate how good these guys are.

On top of that, Earthbound is one of my favorite video game soundtracks ever. I waited patiently for the release and I was not disappointed. Motherlode is a beautiful, jazzy, and soulful arrangement of some of the best jams from the Mother series, mostly Earthbound, in a way that only Super Soul Bros can do. As I type right now, I am also listening to the album and so many memories from Earthbound rush into my head. My heart strings are being pulled at and if you are a fellow fan of Earthbound or appreciate really good renditions of video game music, this album may have a similar effect on you.

January was a great month, and there are even more nerdy jams to enjoy. Let me know what you think in the comments!

4lung – Hyper Rocket
Asperken – Catharsis: A Sensory-Friendly Album
Braxton Burks – Hoenn Summer ( Music from Pokemon Ruby and Sapphire)
Braxton Burks – Johto Legends (Music from Pokemon Gold and Silver)
Crashfaster – superemix
Offbrand – Comeback
Raisi K – Big Numbers
Sare – Tree EP
Snarg – Snarg
Tenfour – Wish Book
Tiasu – Sanctuary
Viking Guitar – Warpath
Yerzmyey – Rpi ZWEI

Author: Kent Ward View all posts by
Kent Ward was created from the combination of anime, classic videogames, and pro wrestling. His obsession with crazy cartoons from Japan led to the founding of Propeller Anime, a prominent anime club in Orlando, FL. Kent also runs Ongaku Overdrive, a music festival dedicated to all sorts of music inspired by anime, video games, and all things geeky. You can follow him on twitter @FistoftheMFK.

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