RFN Episode 25: Thank you Nerdy.FM!

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“This week, Switch says thanks to the folks at Nerdy.fm for their 24/7 nerd music service and looks forward to their new podcast.”

Track 1: MadHatter – Nerd Party (feat. Duyahn Walker)
I love this track. The funky vibes and voicebox plays to the DJ in me, and it’s exactly the kind of jam that should be on every nerd’s playlist, and I want everybody to sing along to at every concert I play.

Interlude 1 – A break from the usual format

Track 2: A_Rival – Break Yo Neck (8-bit Remix)
Another great party track, and one of my favorite tracks from one of my all-time favorite hip-hop artists. It doesn’t get better than Busta … unless you flip it into a chip-hop track 🙂

Track 3: Doctor Awkward – DualShAwks
This is an early release for Doc Awk, proving that he was one of the best lyricists in the game right from the word “go.” His “patronus is a rancor” line gets me Every. Single. Time.

Track 4: Soup Or Villainz – Live In The Arcade
This one’s a little heartbreaking, ’cause it seems to only live on YouTube these days. SOV don’t have it anywhere on their bandcamp (that I can tell), and it was part of a compilation for the old Nerdcore Now site that is no longer around. Still, the Katy Perry sample works well here, and the hook gets stuck in your head, so I think the track still holds up … I’m just sorry I couldn’t find a way to grab the rest of the compilations without digging through YouTube to do it.

Track 5: My Dick – Dick In Heaven
HAHAHAHAHA!!!!! I heard this on the final Nerdy.FM broadcast, and went digging for the bandcamp. The rest of the tracks are just as fantastic as this one, and if you’ve got a trained ear, you can hear some real work going into things like picking patterns and production that make these god-awful lyrics even more justifiably hilarious 🙂

Track 6: Doctor Octoroc – GummiBears
In high school, a good friend of mine turned me on to some college a capella groups he dug up on the old P2P servers, and one of the tracks we happened across was a recording of a group that did the GummiBears theme. It’s one of the tracks that made me fall in love with the genre, and when I heard this excellent chip version on Nerdy, it immediately took me back to being 17 and singing with my friends around the music and drama departments in high school. Band and Theater nerd for life, yo!

Track 7: Temp Sound Solutions – Wii Shop
Another great track I can thank Nerdy for. I found a loop of the Wii Shop music on YouTube a couple years back, and I thought it was hilarious to play it while DJ’ing at the Portland Retro Gaming Expo for all the people shopping for classic gaming stuff. This year, they get to hear TWO versions!

Track 8: TekForce – New Game +
OK, let’s talk about K-Murdock, the producer on this one. Dude does a TON of production for Mega Ran, and has done some touring with Ran as well. The lyrics are solid, and TekForce brings a solid performance, but K-Murdock has an ear I’ve learned to trust, so if he’s on the track, you know it’s not likely to disappoint. He’s also a super nice dude, which is a bonus.

Oh, and speaking of Mega Ran, there’s a remix of New Game + with him on it. Google it. I’ll wait here.

Track 9: MC Ohm-I – Nerd You Up
I’ve been a fan of Ohm-I for a few years, but he’s one of those dudes that’s been around long enough that I still get surprised by some of his older work when I stumble on it. Still, it’s a great track, and one I actually managed to “favorite” via the Nerdy.FM app … which is still on my phone, because I can’t handle having that hole in my home screen. Shut up. I’m not crying. You are.

Interlude 2 – Back To The Tunes …

Track 10: Mary Crowell – I Put My Low Stat
This track does everything right. Clever lyrics, oddball instrumentation, polished performances, and A freakin’ CLARINET SOLO?? Once I get done typing all these notes, I’m probably gonna start digging through the rest of her bandcamp to see what other gems like this she’s published.

Track 11: Marc With A C – Unicorns Get More Bacon
I own this on vinyl. Marc even sent me a second vinyl, so now I have two of his albums on vinyl. What the hell are you waiting for? GO BUY THIS RIGHT NOW!!! Also, Marc will be hosting the new Nerdy.FM podcast, which should start up next month, so make sure you’re up on this dude and his really REALLY deep catalog.

Track 12: George Hrab – Far
George reminds me a lot of Logan Whitehurst, TMBG, Frank Zappa, and a few other acts I could probably think of if I had to. I really dig his stuff, and I kinda wish it was a bit more accessible, but hey … as long as he’s still makin’ tunes like this for the science geeks out there, I won’t complain.

Track 13: The Returners – Phantom Of The Opera
Caught them live at PAX in 2015. She actually sings better live, if you can believe that. They’re known more for VGM stuff, but they have a few non-gaming tracks as well. Seriously, though … the talent in this group is just absolutely staggering. Catch ’em live if you can, but make sure you buy all their songs first so you can sing along when you do.

Track 14: Steam Powered Giraffe – Honeybee
I have a friend that runs a steampunk-themed clothing store here in Portland. She also works with the local steam con, and booking a show with SPG is on their bucket list. It’s on mine too. Funny, that.

Track 15: 3D6 – I’d Rather Live In An RPG
Another Nerdy.FM favorite. I spoke with the leader of a nerd punk group one time about how artists sometimes tend to use the term “punk” to justify a lack of talent or adherence to any kind of musicianship. Bands like 3D6 — as well as the next two in the playlist — prove that “punk” doesn’t have to mean shitty, and I love them for it.

Track 16: Sci-Fried – Wanna Be Your Jedi
Nerdy.FM fans will know Dr. Vern as one of the DJs/Hosts of a handful of regular shows that streamed on the station, including my favorite “Block Party” which was usually a groovier, more dance-inspired playlist. Sci-Fried fans know him as the band’s frontman, along with “Captain” Dan Dolan of “Captain Dan and the Scurvy Crew” fame. Their new stuff just gets better and better, but this older track of theirs has a special place in my heart from when I first heard it a couple years back.

Track 17: Nerf Herder – Ghostbusters III
Nerf Herder came up in the 90’s with bands like TMBG and Weezer. I mean … that’s pretty much all the resume anyone needs in this nerdy music community. If you’re not a Nerf Herder fan, you’re wrong.

Track 18: My Parents’ Favorite Music – Run 1000
This is another one that seems to live solely on YouTube anymore, albeit the official MPFM channel, so that’s somethin’. This track and the next one have a pretty obvious link, in that all of us nerdy types can identify with the isolation that comes from struggling to fit in to a perceived “normal” group of peers. What this track says to me is that if you’ve ever felt truly outcast and alone, once that sense of belonging is felt, however fleeting, we’d do just about anything to get that feeling back. I feel it every time I think about PAX, or nerd music shows, and sometimes I feel like I live my life chasing that dragon, because there’s nothing in the world that feels more like home than being surrounded on all sides by nerds like me.

I know the track is sampled, but it still touches me deep in my soul, and I find as I’ve been going through the production on this episode that this track and the next are the two I look forward to the most in the playlist, and I hope you will too.

Track 19: Kirby Krackle – Going Home
Speaking of “nerds like me,” Kyle’s music once again touches that feeling of belonging deep in my soul. He has a habit of that, which is why KK tracks get so much play on this show. Even when we’re just catching up or talking shop, Kyle is every bit the guy he comes across as in his music, and the only thing better than knowing there’s nerds out there that make you feel like you belong is knowing that it comes from a genuine place. This might be off of Kirby Krackle’s first album, but I think it fits with some of the best Kyle and the gang have had to offer.

Track 20: Press Start 2 Play – Portal To My Heart (A Portal Song)
This one’s another heartbreaker. Unfortunately, PS2P broke up a while back to pursue personal and professional lives, but thankfully their bandcamp is still up and active. If it weren’t for Nerdy, I might have never caught on to these guys, but now I find myself rooting for a reunion. Maybe some day?

Interlude 3 – Thanks for everything, Nerdy.FM!

Track 21: I Fight DragonsShit’s Gonna Be OK 
I know, I know … I ended two episodes in a row with IFD tracks, but come on! They’re awesome! And, honestly, I had some other IFD songs in mind that would have fit elsewhere in the playlist, but when I stumbled on this little unreleased gem, I KNEW I found my closer. PLEASE NOTE: I linked the band’s store page as well, so go visit their site and maybe pick up some tunes. At this point, I’ve discovered that all of their albums have some heavy-hitters, so even though this track might not be available, you can instead buy their cover of Huey Lewis’ “Power of Love,” or their epic closer from the last episode “The Geeks Will Inherit The Earth.” Aw hell, it’s all fantastic, so what are you waiting for???

Thanks for reading all of this and getting this far. To the folks at Nerdy.FM, I can’t thank you all enough. I know the podcast is coming, and I’m excited to see what’s in store, but the live stream took a level of love and care that continues to go unmatched, and if it were possible for a podcast to give a standing ovation, this one would be front and center. Here’s looking forward to the encore. Cheers!  ~ DJ Switch

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