Richie Branson 'The Cold Republic Episode 1: The Empire Likes Rap'

'The Cold Republic' is a six song 'Mixtape' inspired by Bioware's MMORPG 'The Old Republic'. At the helm is Richie Branson, an emcee and producer from the lone star state. With his first video game theme based project, Branson has crafted an appealing concept by sampling the Jeremy Soules and Mark Griskey score for the game. He cites Common, Kanye West and Megaran as his influences. After giving T.C.R. a couple of spins, his demeanor on the mic shows hints at an amalgamation of these three. However, Branson's identity and style clearly a creation to entertain. Representing for the Imperial Agent class, on the track 'Cipher Agent Cypher'. Bransons' vocals are rock steady, his cadence and delivery blend with the recurring 'Republic Battle Music's orchestral strings and bass. On 'Looking For A Group' , he laments about the pain finding a group when you are a Sith Assassin. There are also nods to Emmit Sith, the mythic Huttball player and the wordplay on 'Jedi Nights' is as fun as it is clever (he rhymes Mandalorians with Midichlorians for example). Richie has also included the instrumentals on the release, saying 'in case people want to rap over the tracks themselves (or if they’re just not feeling my flow).” You can download this and his new all about Gundam Wing EP 'Wing Zero' off of his site, for FREE!

Faulkner Detectives 'The Modern Handshake'

A thought out moniker, Faulkner Detectives, combines the name of the Nobel Prize laureate with puzzle solving investigators chasing whodunits and untangling wrongdoings. Or so I thought. Come to find out, after visiting their site that it was a fusion of two other band entities: The Frozen Detectives and Faulkner Allison. 'The Modern Handshake' is the New York City based indie quartets first official release. While I enjoyed the seven song project, I couldn't put my finger on a specific 'sound' of the group.

I asked Alex Segura (vocals/guitar) who they would site as their influences in general and the benefits of voltron-ing two groups together. Here's what he said:

'I don't really think we fall into that "Oh, they sound like this band" scenario. You can hear some of our respective influences a bit, but as a whole, we sound pretty different, I think. We all listen to a wide array of music, from the Beatles, Velvet Underground, New Order, The Cocteau Twins, Motown, classical stuff...I could go on for hours about the stuff we like.

Musically, we mesh pretty well. We're not very typical players. The bass and keyboard play a lot of the lead parts on our songs, we don't have one set lead singer and you can really see a mix of thoughtful, musically-trained ideas coupled with more instinctual stuff. It's a lot of fun.'

SLC Nerd 2012:

If you are in Utah then The Complex (536 west 100 south in Salt Lake City) is the GEEK place to be this Saturday, March 24th. SLC Nerd is the brainchild of Ben Fuller, of MediaRif and Gangrene productions. Billed as a festival that is “All of the fun of a Comic Book Convention, with none of the expense, travel or boring talk-y bits', there will be CosPlay contests, table top gaming and live music. The performances range from rock, pop to the manic fun hip hop stylings of Rotten Musicians. Doors and games open at 2pm and the music gets started around 6pm. Tix are $8 in advance/$10 at the door.

Side note: A fun game that me and my friends like to play at Cons is 'Cosplay or Hipster'. It's where you try and decide if that Slave Leia or that person in the signature red Naruto headband is actually...Cosplay or a counter culture, contemporary bohemian beatnik.

If you take pics, I will post.


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