I’m a sucker for songs about Star Trek, Star Wars, killer robots, and the Internet. “The Picard Song” has been one of my favorite cult tracks, since I heard it in my friend’s dorm room in college. MC Chris’ “Fett’s ‘Vette” remains on my IPod, surviving multiple updates in which other songs were cruelly deleted. These songs celebrate fandom and they’re classic for that reason alone.
Unfortunately, they’re one-hit-wonders. I couldn’t tell you who actually created “The Picard Song” without doing research on Google. I don’t really follow MC Chris. I don’t even own a Weird Al album! In general, I like to follow bands. I download and purchase entire albums. I own discographies. However, there hasn’t been a band for fanboys (and fangirls) that I thought warranted further investigation.
Last week, Nerdbasterds posted the music video to “This Fantasy World” by fangirl folk artists The Doubleclicks from their “Beta Testing 1-2-3” EP. I very rarely if ever sit down for a music video, but I enjoyed the animation. The eponymous song just happens to be about the awkward romance between two gamers. Charm person is described accurately! The squalor of a gamer’s basement is perfect. How many people can turn “primarily Windows-based computers” into a verse? It has a familiar indie folk sound. Naturally, I decided to make a very low DC Research check.
Angela (guitar, lead vocals) and Aubrey Webber (cello) are the sibling singer-songwriter duo behind The Doubleclicks. They debuted on Youtube with their song “Modern Poetry.” Inspired by John Coulton, they’re posting a song each week. Their latest song is a cute, little diddy about the alienation of the apostrophe. They’re literate. They have a great strings section. They mention D&D, World of Warcraft, and living on the internet, but these allusions aren’t the subjects of their songs. They might have a spot on my IPod.
I downloaded the rest of “Beta Testing 1-2-3.” You can find most of the songs on the EP on their Youtube channel, except for one, which I think should be added later- “Technical Writer.” When I saw the title, I thought it would be a parody of The Beatles’ “Paperback Writer.” I was pleasantly surprised to discover; instead, the song satirizes the limited career options for hardcore writers. While walking a mother asks her son about what he wants to be when he grows up. He responds he wants to be a technical writer. In order to avoid burying one’s BA in English in a “lonely, comfortable hole,” the choice between starving and taking jobs with limited creative control needs to be considered. I admire the boy’s pragmatism and his mother’s concern. The starving writer’s imagination is stifled by corporate monotony. But, everybody needs a creative outlet, even if it is found in the “clear and simple prose” of manuals.
Thankfully, English majors can also turn to blogging and folk music.