Top 10 Geeky Soundtracks
We love a good bit of geek culture, so one of the options in last weeks’ Top 10 was for Geeky Soundtracks… But that’s a little bit of an ambiguous term, so let’s quickly encapsulate that for you:
A Geeky Soundtrack doesn’t need to be a commercial work. If it’s relevant to geek culture and it’s music in some way, shape or form, be it with lyrics or not, then it is considered a Geeky Soundtrack. We’re looking at our very favourite songs which help promote geek culture in the greatest of lights. However, because of this I’d like to start this one off with a warning: This issue of Top 10, whilst we have kept it tame, is NSFW!
10 – The Internet Is For Porn, Avenue Q
We warned you that this list would not be explicitly safe for work. However, with the exception of a few words in the song, this really isn’t so bad. Especially if you just have it on your MP3 player or smart phone, whatever you use to listen to your music from. No, Avenue Q is basically the geeks musical and it holds a special place in many a geek and many a musical fans hearts.
The song follows Kate Monster, who is basically lamenting about how exceptionally great the internet really is. She’s got herself a fast connection, so she doesn’t have to wait… But each and every thing she says is interrupted with the words “For Porn!” Shrekkie slowly introduces her to the concept that the internet really isn’t as innocent as she makes it out to be. Poor Kate Monster is going to get some nasty surprises in the form of… Puppets being sinful, I guess.
9 – Code Monkey – Jonathan Coulton
A lesser known masterpiece from the mind that brought us both of the closing themes from Portal.
Is there anyone here who hasn’t worked a job in which they feel their intelligence is under appreciated? Code Monkey sums up the sensations of defeat and being stuck in a prison of idiocy that you don’t feel you entirely deserve, and the lack of confidence that sadly enforces.
It’s also a story of hope. Not the kind of fake hope like “Code Monkey get girl in the end! Code Monkey big hero now!” but the kind of hope that says that we’re all feeling the same way deep down, we’re all suffering together. Keep it together guys, we love you and your warm, fuzzy secret-heart.
8 – Thunderbirds Theme
5… This is an old theme, but one that transcends generation gaps, as the love has passed from father to son.
4… From second one it captures the attention and imagination of the viewer,
3… and from its’ introduction builds into a tense and thrilling sting, before turning into the triumphant march that we know and love.
2… It’s rare to find a piece of music that tells a tale in its’ own right, but Thunderbirds does it. Threat, sinister deeds, the heroes that sweep in to save the day, a moment of peace and serenity before the heroes are called to action once more!
1! Thunderbirds are go!
7 – It’s Dangerous To Go Alone, Starbomb
Those of you who know me well will be aware of my love for a certain video game group on YouTube known as the Game Grumps. When I heard that Game Grump members Arin (Egoraptor) and Danny (Sexbang) would be producing a rap album together, I was highly excited! However, nothing would prepare me for the amazing music with highly hilarious lyrics that came out of their minds.
From Pac-Man, to Sonic and even The Legend of Zelda, the rapping duo have come up with some really funny, albeit somewhat naughty tunes. It’s Dangerous To Go Alone stands out the most for a great representative of what a great fan made song should sound like. It features the infamous line of the man in the cave from the first The Legend of Zelda game, “It’s dangerous to go alone”. Why not watch the video to understand just why it’s dangerous to go alone.
6 – White And Nerdy – “Weird Al” Yankovich
Musically speaking, there are fewer nerds out there than Weird Al. All About The Pentiums was a triumph, as were his tech based hits, like eBay, Virus Alert, Don’t Download This Song, but it’s White and Nerdy that claims its’ place on this list.
Sure it hits every stereotype on the list, but it does so with such affection, and frankly too thoroughly for anyone to know without actually being a massive nerd. It’s hard to find it offensive to us as a culture when it’s just that on-point, and can weave about five different programming languages into a quick-fire lyrics like that.
5 – Star Wars Theme
One of the most iconic and recognisable theme tunes in not just geek culture, but the world. The Star Wars opening theme sparks excitement and interest from the offset. From the opening fanfare-esque noises, all the way through the lengthy part of the song, but why is it that this song has encapsulated the franchise so well?
It’s something to do with the fact that it has remained unchanged over so many films, with so much use in other media. The fact it’s coupled with that iconic text going upwards as if into space, the very representation of the epic adventure the Star Wars characters find themselves in. This is why Star Wars fans love this tune so very much – It captures how the fans feel about the franchise. They’re excited, before this tune excites them further.
4 – Rock the Dragon, DragonBall Z
Who here was a kid who used to shout “Dragon, dragon ball. Dragon, dragon ball zee!” at their TV when this show came on air? Even if you were older, I bet you also felt this was one heck of a catchy anime theme tune… and it helped to inspire many a child to get into anime in general. It definitely was one of the turning points of my young life for watching anime.
Maybe it’s just the incredibly cheesy lyrics? Perhaps it’s the fact that there’s this amazing animation going on at the same time as this action packed tune? Or perhaps it’s just because it was freaking Dragon Ball Z and whenever you heard this song, you rushed over to your television to go and hear what the narrator had to tell you happened previously on Dragon Ball Z. Whatever it was, this tune is instantly recognisable to most anime fans… And many a frustrated parent.
3 – Pokemon Centre, Pokemon
No, “I Wanna Be” isn’t the song we chose for the Pokemon franchise. This is one tune that kind of one ups most video game songs and the one song that one ups most Pokemon anime songs too. This is the Pokemon Centre theme but why does this stand out so much more than say, the Pokemon Red battle theme? Or in fact the battle against Red up on Mr. Silver?
Welcome to the Pokemon Centre, the one place that you’ll always have to visit. If you’re a serious gamer, you’ll go for levels and you’ll go to beat the Elite Four. If you’re more casual, you’ll want to catch Pokemon and collect them from the PC. Even if you just want to trade with people, you used to have to go to the Pokemon Centre. Couple this with small but sweet changes to the tune over time and we’ve wound up with the most iconic and recognisable Pokemon tune going.
2 – Super Mario Bros theme
Duduu du dudu du doo.
I’m sure you’ve also hummed or “dodo’d” along with this song. You recognise it, even if you want to pretend you do not recognise it. This tune wasn’t made to be commercial, it was made for a video game that happened to become one of the biggest selling games of all time and one of the most recognised franchises ever created in gaming. Leaving a legacy even more impressive than our yellow cheese ball Pac-Man, Super Mario Bros. was truly a genre defining game.
Perhaps it’s the fact that this tune is so upbeat that it’s stayed etched in my memory? Maybe it’s because whenever you start playing it, you hear this tune before any of the other songs. In fact, this is the song that really defines the Mario franchise, no matter what anyone says. With a legacy as vast and as expanded as Marios, you bet there’s not many people in the world that don’t know of this tune. So what beats Mario in the spot to number 1? This may surprise you…
1 – The Mysterious Ticking Noise – Potter Puppet Pals
In with the shock ending!
Why is this such an epic nerd song? It’s original, but based on an infamously nerdy property and very obviously made by fans, after all, no one could hate something so much that they make a puppet collection out of it. In eight years (yup, eight) it has amassed 161.3M views on YouTube, and with a very simple set up, it parodies the famous characters brilliantly, with only their names.
There was a time in college when I distinctly not being able to get through a day without someone starting the tune going, and more often than not with me seizing the role of DUMBLEDORE for myself, and with Kita fast approaching I can see both of us resurrecting this internet classic.
This subject was vast. I don’t think I can emphasize how many options we had to wade through, dismiss, or bump down so far that we ran out of space. Given time we’d have turned this into a top twenty without blinking (ever) but alas ’tis not to be. Our apologies as ever to those we left behind, and please share your favourite nerdy-tracks with us in the comments down below.
And as ever we quibbled, umm’d and ahh’d for so long that we ended up with a few leftovers that didn’t quite fit the bill, but deserved the honorary nod of approval that makes us feel so much less guilty and neglectful. Bands, soundtracks, and entire genres were dismissed into the “Nope” pile to make way for these two.
Floppy Disc Music
Because only an artist can pull beauty from something so ugly, and only a massive nerd could make a mini-orchestra out of a stack of old floppy disc drives. The inspiration came from 2007, a video in which a Commodore 64 played a short tune, in 2008 the trend began with the Imperial March, and from there spiralled out of control.
Tutorials are available across the internet, and floppy drives are available in most junk piles and mysterious tech stores run by guys that are secretly genies. So if you’re looking to recreate the sound of the nineties in a way that inspires and doesn’t make you want to swallow your own tongue, put down the modem and Spice Girls CDs, and compose a 3 1/2″ masterpiece.
Power metal, retro games and kids TV themes are about as awesome a combination that you can make without a blender or highly questionable faux-science. Powerglove have two albums to their name, each one is an instrumental assortment of the best nostalgia-inducing themes and tunes but in a style that makes them more awesome to drive to.
Batman, Legend of Zelda, Pokemon, Inspector Gadget turned into metal goodness, even the Flintstones get dragged out of the stone-age. So think no more of Nintendo’s first failed attempt at what would later become the Wii, think only that you love Powerglove! It’s so bad…
From the offset of writing this Top 10 list, we both struggled as we had to think of what was really the very best geek culture had to offer. The problem with writing this particular list is that we know we will have let some of you down… But that’s the beauty of opinions. Share with us your personal favourite geeky music tracks and whilst you’re at it: Vote for next weeks’ Top 10!
Share with us your personal favourite geeky soundtracks either here on the website, or over on Facebook and Twitter. Let us know what you liked and disliked about our list and if you think we should have reordered this list. Until next time – See you in the discussions!