Penny Arcade's brand new episodic adventure/RPG game, On the Rain-Slick Precipice of Darkness, has shaped up to be a pretty swell deal. While I only had time to play the first few minutes of the demo last night, it managed to do its part in teasing me with promises of fun, excitement, and kittens. The part of the game where I acquired T. Kemper, the side-kick kitten for battle, is why there are promises of kittens.
The game has a heavy feeling of adventure game-like progression tied in with colorful notes of comic book humor in true Penny Arcade fashion. Of exciting note is the character creator at the beginning which allows you to make a custom character in the style of Gabe and Tycho. While there are certainly limitations to the design customizations you can fool around with, there are all sorts of unspeakable joys that you will experience when you see your personalized avatar playing the main role in both 3D and 2D animations.
Santogold's album Santogold is vivaciously living up to all of my expectations. I've been waiting around to hear it since I heard her original single L.E.S. Artistes (and the fantastic accompanying music video by Nima Nourizadeh) a few months ago. Now with a whole platter of Santogold songs on my lap, my ears are joyously rolling around in a bed of classic guitar riffs, unexpected electro beats, and Santogold's rad-ass voice. Like a female fusion of Pixies tossed with a few dubs from M.I.A. and topped with some modern sprinkles of The Police, Santogold is worth the listen.
Last night Kat and I watched Velvet Goldmine, a film loosely based around the story of David Bowie's concept character Ziggy Stardust. Featuring a beautifully androgynous blonde Jonathan Rhys Meyers as the star Brian Slade, and paired alongside Ewan McGregor and Christian Bale, the film is saturated with the glittering life of the glamrock scene in the 70's and lined with colorful musical interludes and performances. The soundtrack beautifully compliments the film, and now I'm sitting here this afternoon, spring fevered and starry eyed to the album. Here are a few of my favorite tracks so far:
To my surprise, yesterday I came home to find a package from my online friend/pen pal Crap Artist who's over in Berlin, Germany. We last sent each other packages in the fall, so I suppose this is the new round of springtime exchanges. Mr. Artist contained his goodies in a lovely envelope with a map printed on the inside and lined with beautiful German postage stamps:
I'm sure you've neglected to notice that it has been a long time since I've publicly fawned over you. One could say that you and Justice were my summer romance of 2007, lingering long into the autumn months but eventually falling flat as winter came and went. I might as well admit that the raining sweat of scenesters and raver kids from your MySpace concert more or less washed any remaining sentiments of affection.
Nevertheless, I felt the need to write this note to you since recently you've been acting up the part of the obnoxious ex-boyfriend, what with your irrational and non-explanatory motions of whoring yourself out while trying to maintain that cool, composed, aura of a skinny jeaned deity. This is heavily pronounced by your newly released music video for the track Stress, which has caused much astir within the French community (as revealed to me by one hungry frenchman) and Justice fans alike. For context, I've provided the video below:
To start, I'll plain admit that Stress is my least favorite track on â , but I still have a lot of questions. How do you feel after watching that video, Xavier? Do you feel dignified that your video encapsulates a set of Justice flavored miscreants that truly define the 'edgier', converse-wearing, side of electronica? I'm sure their acts of chaotic, nonsensical chic-violence will truly define the real fans from the lesser strata of MySpace buffoons in a heart beat, while simultaneously convincing the confused parties to go ahead and purchase the conveniently 'Now for Sale!' Justice leather jacket with matching jeans.
All a matter of opinion, of course, but here are two tips that I think you should focus on:
1. Stop making shitty music videos for the sake of hype. (Your last two were fantastic, so find another way to express yourself cathartically)
2. Start making music. (Touring is no excuse. You need a new album. Pronto.)
I was going to include a third tip that involved you halting your habits of making out with cute french hipster ladies instead of me, but I've grown beyond such lofty dreams. I'll give you some points for clever employment of your group's name to the extent that you have crowds of fans chanting 'Justice! Justice!' during your concert, but if modern calls for 'Justice' elicit rather blazÃ© acts of unmotivated violence, please count me out. For the sake of comparison, see Nima Nourizadeh's video for Jamie T.'s song Salvador Version 2(go here and click on the thumbnail under Music Videos with the skull-faced children in front of the fire) So, until that next album...
Since first meeting Dan and off-handedly insulting his Castle Crasher figurines for including what I thought was a pizzacutter (which actually turned out to be a mace), we have become pretty close friends. This is demonstrated by the fact that we're top friends (on Myspace, of COURSE), but also from the one time we were chilling in the Hyatt hotel lobby during GDC and a drunk passerby asked if we were married. Hence the title: Top Friends with Marriage (we are not actually married, silly).
Dan means a lot more to me than MySpace or fake marriages, however, and a few months ago when he and the rest of The Behemoth team were up here for GDC and Wondercon, we hung out a lot and drew pictures together, one of which is displayed above. To commemorate our long-distant, convention-fueled friendship, I decided to turn this drawing into the following plush duo: