Category Archives: Music To My Ears

Music To My Ears – First Date Edition

Music To My Ears posts chronicle a sampling of the great music of a particular series, franchise, etc. Posts tend to be skewed towards videogames, but can cover anything with a great soundtrack behind it (TV shows, anime, movies, etc.). If you have a music track from the series discussed that you like, comment and it may be added to this post…

…is what I’d ordinarily say, but this post is a bit different.

This past month has been a little of everything, really. Work, classes, the imminent prospect of finding a job. I’ve been real busy. But one thing that’s been a real light in the darkness is my new wonderful girlfriend. If not for her, I think the workload would have broken me by now. If you’ll permit me to brag for a second, she’s just so wonderful, having a great personality, a willingness to accept me as I am, and a highly uncommon innocence towards love that just completely floors me every now and then.

Oh, and she’s 8,000 miles away. Important detail, that. She’s from the Philippines, and we met online. But we quickly grew to love each other and decided to make it a long-distance relationship. It has its pros and cons, but I won’t go too deeply into that because that’s not the focus of the post.

When our first date involved sharing our favorite music, I was worried. If you’ve seen the past Music To My Ears posts, or indeed browsed the site at all, you’d know I’m a bit on the nerdy side. I already knew her favorite songs were slow pop songs dealing with love, which would make quite the contrast. I told her she would be dealing with such, but she was ok with it, and not once during the date was she ever visibly fazed, which was impressive (I, on the other hand…).

So basically, this is almost my Top 9 list. I say almost because I tried to skew it a bit towards not being completely embarrassing, but I realized halfway through that it would be a fruitless attempt.

Continue reading Music To My Ears – First Date Edition

Music To My Ears: It’s Time To SLAM!

Music To My Ears posts chronicle a sampling of the great music of a particular series, franchise, etc. Posts tend to be skewed towards videogames, but can cover anything with a great soundtrack behind it (TV shows, anime, movies, etc.). If you have a music track from the series discussed that you like, comment and it may be added to this post!

One of the things I have routinely annoyed my Facebook and Twitter friends/followers with lately is the meme that is ‘Quad City DJs vs. X’. The meme consists of a mashup of the theme from the movie Space Jam with… pretty much anything else that works, yielding awesome and/or hilarious results. They are also accompanied by photoshopped pictures of the crossover with everyone’s face replaced by Charles Barkley, as you will see below. I have here ten good slams, including some my friends shared with me.

…vs. Ichiro Shimakura (Pokemon TCG)

The best battle theme for children’s card games you will ever hear. I am playing this mix of the normal battle theme at the next OSU Pokemon League meeting (which may not be for months). No excuses.

Continue reading Music To My Ears: It’s Time To SLAM!

Music To My Ears – Sonic The Hedgehog (Portable)

Music To My Ears posts chronicle a sampling the great music of a particular series, franchise, etc. Posts tend to be skewed towards videogames, but can cover anything with a great soundtrack behind it (TV shows, anime, movies, etc.). If you have a music track from the series discussed that you like, comment and it may be added to this post!

Now, I’m probably NEVER going to do something as broad as the entire Sonic series in one post. It’d be much too hard to come up with a top ten list – the Sonic series especially is known for good music. Instead, I might do lesser-known subsections like this – only taking a look at a certain portion of the franchise. In this case, portable games from the series.

Sunset Park Act 3 (Triple Trouble)

Out of all the Sonic Game Gear music, this is the only track that’s stuck with me. Other than that, some of the GG music can get a bit annoying… but that’s mainly because of the limitations of the system.

Continue reading Music To My Ears – Sonic The Hedgehog (Portable)

Music To My Ears – DJ MAX series

Music To My Ears posts chronicle a sampling the great music of a particular series, franchise, etc. Posts tend to be skewed towards videogames, but can cover anything with a great soundtrack behind it (TV shows, anime, movies, etc.). If you have a music track from the series discussed that you like, comment and it may be added to this post!

DJMAX is a Korean rhythm action game series – like DDR, but with standard buttons and more recently touchscreens (in the case of the Technika sub-series). Only midway through the series did it start coming to American shores. DJMAX Online, the first game in the series, was released in 2004 for PC. DJMAX Portable 1 and 2 were released for the PSP next.

DJMAX then stepped up its game in the Metro Project, which encompassed Portable: Clazziquai Edition and Portable: Black Square. CE was geared towards more casual players and features several tunes from the popular Korean electronica group Clazziquai, as well as songs specifically made for the game. Black Square was dedicated to more experienced players. BS and CE feature link disc functionality that allows you to unlock extra content if you have both games, as Portable 1 and Portable 2 did before them. DJMAX Trilogy was released for PC later in 2008, which essentially acted as DJMAX Online’s replacement while bringing in over 100 songs from Online and the Portable series (no Clazziquai or Black Square songs at the start, but they were added in nearly a year later through game updates, along with some other popular features).

After that, the series finally made the jump to the US and Europe with DJMAX Fever for the PSP at the beginning of 2009. The game was available in stores and a year later on the Playstation Network with bug fixes (unfortunately) not found on the disc version. The game features a mix of songs from Portable 1 and 2, meaning this is a decent intro to the series.

Only a few days after the Fever release, Technika was released as well. Technika (and the sequels Technika 2 and 3) were arcade titles utilizing touchscreen gameplay. The arcade cabinets haven’t seen too much action in the US unless you are lucky enough to live in California.

In late 2010, DJ MAX Portable 3 for PSP saw release in the US. The print run was limited to about 1,000, I believe (one of which I have, so HA), but it is also available on the Playstation Network.

The most current editions of the series are DJMAX Ray and DJMAX Technika Tune. Technika Tune was released for the PS VITA (both on disc and downloadable) in the US last September, and features touch-screen gameplay similar to the arcade Technika releases. DJMAX Ray is for iOS and Android, and features downloadable song packs.

The series has a few quirks. The older releases all have the option to switch to English language, but the translations are rarely perfect and often lulzy (One of the song descriptions in Trilogy: ‘Second hand experience of getting out of stressful regular lives which once everyone thought of running away from, this hallucinating and fantasy styles of music video will support you of all that.’). This unfortunately carries over to DJMAX Fever, which WAS released in the US. Also, DJMAX has historically had an uncommonly poor QA team. Many of the games release with errors. In Trilogy, it was common to see a patch break as many things as it fixed in completely different areas of the game. Finally, all of the games have a difficult learning curve, but also a ton of replay value to balance that out. Of course, the series games are still great, and you shouldn’t skip them. If you can, I recommend trying to import at least CE/BS and Trilogy (unfortunately, Clazziquai seems to be sold out at Play-Asia, but try finding it elsewhere on the internet. I believe in you.)

NOTE: Some of these videos are of just the music videos, and others are of actual playthroughs. Bear in mind that for playthroughs, some sounds are controlled by the user, and those sounds are louder than usual so the player can get a sense of the beat. If you want to look for plain music videos where playthroughs are given (or vice versa), you can easily look them up on YouTube.

Your Smile – Portable 3

While Portable 3 may not stand up to its predecessors in terms of soundtrack size and quality, that’s not to say it doesn’t have any good songs. Case in point: Your Smile, a nice little synth pop ditty.

Continue reading Music To My Ears – DJ MAX series

Music To My Ears – Indie Smorgasbord

Music To My Ears posts chronicle a sampling the great music of a particular series, franchise, etc. Posts tend to be skewed towards videogames, but can cover anything with a great soundtrack behind it (TV shows, anime, movies, etc.). If you have a music track from any indie game that you like, comment and it may be added to either this post or a future Indie Smorgasbord!

BIT.TRIP VOID – Ego

BIT.TRIP VOID is the third game in the BIT.TRIP series of games, and my personal favorite because of both the gameplay and the music (but unfortunately like other early BIT.TRIP games, it suffers in the gameplay length department. WiiWare may actually be to blame here). This plays in the second level of the game. I like the slightly minimalistic semi-8-bit tune.

Continue reading Music To My Ears – Indie Smorgasbord