2016 is almost over. Thank God. A devastating year on a whole, it specifically was harsh to music. A number of our favourites passed on. It’s been hard, to say the least. Thankfully, there has been some great music released throughout the year, especially of the geeky variety. A number of enjoyable albums and singles were birthed into the world and I want to feature several of them right here, right now. These are the 7 best geek songs I’ve gotten to hear this year. Some were featured in album reviews on our website. Others were played on our radio show. If you’re looking for the best geek songs to play at your New Year’s Eve Party, take a look at the list below.
From the VS. EP
Bucky Barnes had a pretty big year as the main focus of the Civil War movie. Pulled from Panels also had a good year with the release of their second EP, VS. A celebration of Marvel Heroes (and a quick ode to Doctor Who thrown it) the selection was fast, fierce and full of energy. The highlight of the EP would have to be Winter Soldier, a tribute to everybody’s favourite former best friend of Steve Rogers. This song does a great job of retelling the origin of James Buchanan Barnes, from his beginnings with Captain America to his demise and his rebirth as the Winter Soldier. I’m a sucker for a good story. And the upbeat nature of the tune gives some great contrast to the sad tale being told. Any fan of Bucky, be it from the comics or the Marvel Cinematic Universe, will find some bittersweet enjoyment from this track.
A 2016 Single
Based on true events, Kyle Stevens took from an incident in his own life when his wife watched The Walking Dead without him. This was the inspiration for a pop rock song that gets stuck in your head in a good way. We’ve all had this happen to us, whether it’s a television show or a movie. There’s always that person, usually a significant other, who you wait to watch a show for so you can watch it together. Then they watch it without you and you feel so betrayed. This song captures all the feelings and thoughts you’ve had on the matter and says everything you want to say. Brilliant.
From The Redhead League
Full disclosure time, kids. I acted as a consultant on The Redhead League. All that really means is that I got to see the lyrics to the songs before they were recorded. I had nothing to do with the magic that was produced. The first song I got to hear was Unmasked and it has remained my favourite. A window into the thoughts of Mary Jane Watson, the reoccurring leading lady in Spider-Man’s life, the song gives us a glimpse of the “real” Mary Jane. Everybody knows that Peter Paker puts on a mask to fight crime, but Mary Jane also wears a mask most of the time. From her time as a supermodel to her current status running the day to day business of Stark International, Mary Jane doesn’t let just anyone peak behind the curtain of her professional persona. This song is full of wild spirit, much like the subject of the tune and person singing it.
From Borken Telephone
I love songs that capture a moment. A perfect memory that you convey with such clarity that everyone that hears it can feel its power. This song is a tribute to college roommates and all the fun that was had during a time where it felt like the world was small and you didn’t have a care outside of your apartment. It’s starts off so happy and ends so sad. But the sadness is good in a way. Perfect memories are such because they end and you move on. You advance and become a different version of yourself. But at the same time, you long for the simplicity that that memory promises. It’s both a terrible and fantastic feeling to have. This quiet little song conveys the feeling with such accuracy, I think anyone can find a comparison in their lives to associate this song with.
From Something’s Rotten
I don’t usually get into love songs. Astronaut’s Hymn feels like more than just a love song. It’s the tale of an astronaut leaving Earth for the great unknown and saying goodbye to the love they’re leaving behind. There’s a celebration of wonder that’s undercut by a sadness of being apart from the person that completes them. There’s also a promise to return, no matter the cost. I don’t usually get choked up from a song but it’s hard when you’re dealing with something so pretty and full of raw emotion. While other love songs seem trite, Astronaut’s Hymn hits you in the gut, making you feel both the pain of detachment and the optimism that all will be right in the end. Something’s Rotten is the best album the Broadsides have ever produced and Astronaut’s Hymn is a prime example of how much they’ve grown as a band. I look forward to more songs with this same emotional resonance from them in the future.
From Yeoman on the Bridge
The second song from Leslie Hudson on the list. When you put out two albums in a year, you get two songs on the list. (She actually put out three album this year. Yeah, she’s a workhorse, that one.) The great thing about the volume of Leslie’s output is that it all sounds different. She plays and blends multiple styles and genres so no two songs feel alike. On Yeoman on the Bridge, Leslie got her Star Trek on something fierce with various tributes and nods. In Captain’s Mess, she pays tribute to the many captains who’ve starred in Trek series, all from the eyes of a yeoman (on the bridge, like the title suggests). It has an electronic vibe that gives a very cool, smooth sound. There’s a juxtaposition of the adventurous subject matter and the laid back delivery, driving home the yeoman’s stance that “it’s the Captain’s Mess” and it’s up to the Captain to clean it up. With homage paid to all the captains of import, it’s a great piece for trekkers and non-trekkers alike.
From Blow the Fuck Up But Stay Humble
Probably the funniest song I’ve heard all year. More Or Les and Schaffer the Darklord break down what it is to be a “REAL MAN”. This tongue-in-cheek guide on how to be a man takes the piss out of toxic masculinity and the stereotypes associated with it. Instead of talking tough and getting in your face, the song lists a number of activities and hobbies not traditionally associated with “being manly”, like going to the spa and enjoying Meryl Streep movies. It basically says that being a man does not mean you have to sport a “macho guy” facade. Being a man is being yourself and these dudes are not going to deny themselves the finer things in life just to fit into some archetype. The song is a lot of fun and has a great beat. It’s good and good for you.
So there’s my list of the seven best geek songs to be released this calendar year. While 2016 was shitty, at least we got some good music out of it. I look forward to see what’s coming from geek musicians in 2017. If you have an album you’d like us to review on the site or a song you want us to play on our radio show, send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. I’ll be more than happy to give it a listen.
If you’re gonna geek out, GEEK HARD!