Here’s another vintage “Nerd Blog.” It’s about an 8-bit synth rock band that I feel in love with while working in Denver. I consider 2010 – 2011 to be the start of my nerd renaissance.
I wasn’t one of those kids who openly expressed the wonders of their nerdom. None of my friends knew I watched Dragon Ball Z every afternoon on Cartoon Network, or that I spent most Saturday mornings playing Pokemon Blue or old SNES games. I was unreasonably ashamed of it, knowing I would be made fun if anyone discovered the Gold Chocobo I’d worked so hard to get. Looking back, I feel like there was an important aspect of my nerd development that was left wanting. Luckily, now that I’m older and strong enough to beat up most middle schoolers, I feel confident in liking the things that I like because I like them.
Capturing that coy adolescent time of hidden interests is the music of the ingenious band Anamanaguchi. They make “loud, fast music with a hacked NES from 1985.” They are one of many in a growing trend of 8-bit musicians and, in my opinion, the best.
Their recent “Dawn Metropolis” is immensely entertaining, fast and energetic, and completely enjoyable. Describing the album as “nostalgic” doesn’t seem to fit, while Anamanaguchi is in the same cannon as the Mega Man 3 soundtrack, their music doesn’t feel old at all. Instead it’s something brand new, made up from the forgotten parts from our collective childhood.
My favorite song off their new album is “Jetpack Blues, Sunset Hues,” which you might recognize form the opening of the Nerdist podcast. This song is a perfect example of Anamanaguchi‘s talent, not only in their musical composition but also in their ability to recreate what it feels like to run through an 8-bit sidescroller. Back when our hero’s existed in 2D, music as an important aspect of world creation. “Jetpack Blues” pays homage to that, giving the listener the feeling that they too must save the princess before it’s too late.
If you’re looking for a copy of “Dawn Metropolis,” good luck. It’s sold out, and for good reason. Though, the fellows of Anamanaguchi are kind enough to provide the album, in it’s entirety, freely streaming on their site. Perhaps even more exciting than that are the singles, released bi-weekly, also free to download.
You can find Anamanaguchi at www.anamanaguchi.com
You can also follow them on twitter, @Anamanaguchi
P.S. Please check out my friend Chris’ delightfully nerdy site over at 8-Bit Punch. I read it daily.
P.P.S If I misspelled “Anamanaguchi” at any point, I’m sorry. It’s damn weird word.