Musical Tuesdays – Theme Edition

Wow, I’ve actually managed to make a second Musical Tuesday post. Maybe this will last a while after all!

The first song for this week is Christmas Island by Washington State natives Lake. Also known as Island Song, keen eared listeners will recognise it as the end theme from possibly the best cartoon series ever, Adventure Time with Finn and Jake.

Even more keen eared listeners will realise that it’s not quite the same song as the end theme. The Adventure Time version has a whole bunch of altered lyrics – although you don’t get to hear too much of them, as the end credits only run for a verse and a half. If you’re interested in a complete comparison you can track the full version down – think of it as a challenge!

In any case, this version of the song is a sweet, lo-fi ballad with a touch of the 50’s to it, which is A-OK by me.

The second track for this week is another TV ending theme, this one belonging to 80’s sci-fi series Max Headroom. Those too young to remember the 80’s may be unaware of Max and his career trajectory which went from Pepsi spokes-thing to star of a cyberpunk TV series, to interrupting late night Doctor Who reruns with incomprehensible rants about Chuck Swirsky. In any case, I remember the TV series as being a greatly entertaining distopian extravaganza set “20 minutes into the future”.

It would no doubt look pretty dated now, but then Cyberpunk itself is dated. It was the 1980’s idea of what the 21st century would look like (much as Steampunk is the 21st century’s idea of the 19th century’s idea of the 20th century). It got a few things right, but a whole lot more things wrong. Cybernetic limbs for instance are rare, and not terribly good. There certainly is a “net” – but it’s not an exciting virtual reality world made up of vector polygons, it’s a place where people post videos of their cats. Corporations are  not – as yet – in charge of private armies of mercenaries engaging in prolonged gun battles through the city streets. Climate change has mitigated the chance of constant gloomy overcast and pounding rain, and neon signs full of Chinese and Japanese logograms are mostly limited to the areas immediately surrounding Asian restaurants.

But back to the music. This end theme apparently appeared on a only a few episodes, which meant that for years the only way I’ve had to hear it is the scratchy version I recorded straight off the TV onto an audio tape circa 1989 – which features the added bonus of an announcer talking about all the action coming up on a new episode of something called Paradise. But I recently stumbled over a copy that some kind soul has put up on YouTube. So slip on your mirrorshades and chill out to a great piece of 80’s synth that may or may not have been written by that dude from Ultravox.

Crazy Bioshock Inifinite Theories Number One

I suspect that the developers of Bioshock Infinite didn’t actually want to use Girls Just Wanna Have Fun in the game. I think they wanted Time After Time, but they couldn’t get the rights.

Why? Several of the other anachronistic songs seem to contain references to the plot and general theme of the game. Fortunate Son and Everybody Wants to Rule the World in particular. Time After Time would seem to tie in with the time travel elements and the relationships Elizabeth has with several of the other characters, and hence fits the game better than Girls Just Wanna Have Fun.

It’s a theory!

Went to a Quiz Night with Justin and Marika last night. Our table came about 5th or 6th out of 30 or so, which isn’t bad. We were actually in the lead up until the last few rounds, but we had a couple of bad ones, and some other tables had some good ones. It was a good night – although the organisation was shambolic with the result that it didn’t finish until just before midnight.

Additionally, one of the questions was “What did the S.S. in the name of the S.S. Titanic stand for?”. The correct answer – as any fule shud kno – is absolutely bloody nothing, because the Titanic wasn’t an S.S., it was an R.M.S. There was a $50 penalty for challenging questions so we gritted out teeth and ran with it, receiving full points for the completely erroneous “Steam Ship”. Honestly, who vets these questions?

But yeah, stunning ignorance of historical ship designations aside, it was a really fun night and apparently raised a lot of money, so that’s good.

Hmmm, what else has been going on? Oh yes, I’ve been watching some Adventure Time on YouTube. It’s one of those series I’ve been meaning to check out for ages, and against all the odds now actually have. It turns out that it’s every bit as good as I’ve heard – here’s an episode for you to see for yourself! (assuming lawyers haven’t swept down and destroyed it…).

Finally, here’s some nice, soothing music by the Legendary Stardust Cowboy to tide you over…

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