Like so much other wonderful music, I got hipped to Broadcast by Thom Yorke, in a best of 2000 roundup he did for SPIN. Although I have enjoyed all three Broadcast LP and the various EPs, the brilliance of The Noise Made by People still stands out. Whenever I struggle to describe music that is icy but warm, familiar but distant, Noise comes to mind. Trish Keenan’s vocals always overwhelmed me, somehow alluding categorization and comfort. A blast of beauteous ice rocketed from the 1960’s into the future. And now, sadly, heard no more.
If you think nothing is yours
And if I claim everything belongs to me
How wrong I’ll be
None of us have anything
There’s a place I have never explored
Another world we have yet to conquer
And until then, none of us have anything
If you pressed me for my favorite video game and I wanted to “impress” you with an “original” answer, I’d hem and haw and mention, somewhat disingenuously, SkyRoads, a highly addictive spaceship jumping game from Estonia for MS Dos, circa 1993. Yes: originality of favorite video game is something I think could “impress” people. And yes, I’m mega-excited to find out that there’s now a clone version available for Windows, Mac, and Linux called Tasty Static. And yes: it’s a miracle I’m not single.
But if you were to ask me about my favorite music from a video game, I wouldn’t have to be disingenuous at all: Skyroads takes the cake by a sky-mile. Luckily, creator Bluemoon has a page with all the music from the game. Here’s “Road One,” complete with the “running out of oxygen” warning sound at :44 that still makes my palms sweat.
Given my (only vaguely poseur-ish) love of all things SkyRoads, it should be no surprise that whenever I find a sonic analogue I’m prone to fall in love. I ranked the debut album of Seeland, an offshoot from the beautifully icy Broadcast, as one of my notable albums from 2009 in no small part because opener “Burning Pages” fit right into SkyRoads’ palette. They have a new album, not quite as strong but still good IMHO, which you can stream to the right.
Newly released “Get a Job” from Brooklyn’s one-woman Computer Magic (unsigned for what I suspect is a very brief moment) also fits into the SkyRoads universe. Her Soundcloud is full of great tracks, all “demos” at this point. And really, computers are magic. Fact. Does not hurt that she’s just a shade on the foxy side. Skyroads + Foxy Lady = Swoon. Whom am I kidding? Skyroads + Anything = Swoon. “Victory Gin,” although not very SkyRoads-y, is also excellent.