Today is the last Thursday of the year, and I think the occasion would be best spent looking back at all of the songs highlighted in this weekly music-writing series. This project was only (re)started in earnest five months ago, yet as should be evident here, that still covered a whole lot of ground.
All my life, I’ve had multiple interests—video games, anime, computer science, and math among them—but once I fell in love with music, it forever held the top spot as my biggest passion from that moment onward. Back when I was both a regular Tumblr denizen and frequent scrobbler via last.fm, I decided to channel it into an alternate blog, and from that inclination, the original incarnation of RedStripeLovedTrax was born.
Safe to say, it was ultimately short-lived. However, it was not from a lack of enjoyment. I found it both helpful and fun thinking about how to articulate, into writing, exactly why I loved the songs that I did. Even well after the Tumblr blog was left fully alone once and for all, I still mulled over the prospect of resurrecting the the series, or something close in concept to it, sometime in the future.
Time skip to 2017, when this Kotaku/Kinja-at-large reader is granted authorship privileges on Talk Amongst Yourselves. Looking for a way to regularly contribute writing to the site after struggling to keep up with even a one-post-per-week average, he thinks back to the days of Tumblr past. And YES!! Perhaps if he strengthen its focus to the music of video games and (secondarily) anime, this may be the perfect time to give the series a second life!
Music and both anime and gaming, after all, have always intertwined with profound strength, whether via the musical scores and OPs/EDs defining countless games and series, or the songs, musicians, and genres that listeners have discovered on account of rhythm games or Grand Theft Auto soundtracks, or hell, even getting exposed to new horizons of music on account of watching so many combo videos for fighting games.
Therefore, on July 27, RedStripe Loved Trax officially came to be! From then to now, on the cusp of the new year, here are all of the songs that have been written about.
- Derek Duke, Glenn Stafford, Neal Acree & Russell Brower - “Heaven’s Devils” (StarCraft II)
- Kohei Tanaka - “Lei Colmosna” (Gravity Rush 2)
- Sonic Youth - “Teen Age Riot” (Rock Band 2)
- Hideki Abe - “Fun Puyo Puyo Hell!” (Puyo Pop Fever)
- Frank Klepacki - “Act On Instinct” (Command & Conquer)
- CHVRCHES - “Warning Call” (Mirror’s Edge Catalyst)
- DJ SHARPNEL - “TGTMN”
- Joel Eriksson - “Vehicle IV” (Theme of Battlefield 1942)
- Kuricorder Quartet - “New School Term 6" (Azumanga Daioh)
- 2MB - “PARANOiA KCET ~clean mix~” (Dance Dance Revolution)
- Takuro Yoshida - “Jun” (Cromartie High School)
- Mick Gordon - “Flesh & Metal” (DOOM 2016)
- Jerry Martin - “No Gridlock” (SimCity 4)
- Muse - “Hysteria” (Rock Band)
- Jun Chiki Chikuma - “Tripod” (Bomberman Hero)
- Noisia and Scratch Perverts - “Groundhog” (Beat juggle from DJ Hero)
- Reverend Horton Heat - “Pride Of Saint Jacinto” (Hot Wheels Turbo Racing)
- Gesaffelstein - “Pursuit” (Hotline Miami 2: Wrong Number, indirectly)
- Lev Knipper and Shirō Hamaguchi - “Polyushko-polye” (Girls und Panzer)
- Bobby Helms - “Jingle Bell Rock”
- Koji Kondo - “Slider” (Super Mario 64)
- Trans-Siberian Orchestra - “Good King Joy”
- Eurythmics - “Winter Wonderland”
- Takayuki Hattori and the Sister Princess cast - “The Miracle Is Forever” (Sister Princess)
- Low - “Just Like Christmas”
- Burl Ives - “A Holly Jolly Christmas”
- Negoto - “Synchromanica” (Galilei Donna)
- Grant Kirkhope - “Ziggies!” (Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle)
And that covers everything from the year. Twenty-eight songs over the span of five months.
To those you who looked at even a single one of these pieces, thank you very much. Putting this series together is wholly satisfying on a personal level, but it is such a fantastic added bonus that even a few other people share in on this.
Onward to next year!
RedStripe Loved Trax—originally from days of Tumblr past—is a series about the music Justin adores, with special emphasis on songs from (or introduced by) video games and anime.