a frosty work music playlist for when it’s too cold to get out of bed, gently building in energy as you wake up at a rather reasonable pace, never getting too crazy.
a weirder, purposefully contrarian take on materia system that maybe overthought being “different” a little too hard. you have to read “junction system” in thorhighheels’s voice.
another work music playlist with the purpose of grounding you (it is gentle, and all songs prominently feature strings) while enabling dissociation (it weaves in songs from video game or movie soundtracks, indulging an escapist mood in a work playlist that knows you’d rather not think about work). except this time sometimes people are singing or it’s a godspeed you! black emperor song that’s approximately 4 days long.
i’ve only played some of final fantasy viii so sorry if i left out A Banger but i sure as shit scoured spotify for an appropriate cover of the triple triad music because i at least knew that much.
high dex low int build
some work music tunes for having no attention span, not checking twitter, daydreaming of starting a new drunk no pants 1 point to intellect playthrough, not checking twitter
i started writing a Thing here about the loss of the preservation as a possibility and the complications that poses for curation but sammie suggested that most people probably just accept ephemerality as the internet so nvm this is a playlist for getting back into your groove when you’ve been distracted by something unfixable
(title is based on a joke made by Kreal on twitter that I can’t find because it’s been like 3 years anyway you should watch Kreal Tube it’s good)
invoking the late-night creative golden hour
A playlist for anyone who gets their best work done around 10:30 pm, but has a day job.
Despite being wildly genre-agnostic, the vibe is pretty consistently mellow, warm, but a little melancholy throughout. All of these songs live in a world that’s mostly gone to bed for the day and has thus gotten pretty quiet. It’s not a late-night playlist that’s going to eventually lull you to sleep, but rather one that’s content to stay up with you for a little while. And if you put it on in the middle of the day, it’ll pretend it’s the nighttime with you.
seeking to fill the void left in the wake of another completed SGDQ? great news: trash garbage is here to provide! this one is a semi-high-energy background noise featuring words that don’t make much sense, just like GDQ speedruns.
this is the more chaotic sister playlist of our twitch streams playlist. a similar concept of work music characterized by the presence of human voices throughout (but not vocals, mostly), but rowdier and less polished. if i can’t really get into twitch streams is the analogue of half-watching a stranger play video games, agdqlike is the analogue of half-watching a crowd watch a stranger play video games. it’s not a video game music playlist, that shit’d be unlistenable.
the cave level from pokemon snap
Some twinkly vibes for taking pictures of bats and plants in a cave. That’s it. I just like this level from this game. Here, I made a one-hour loop of it! Put on the playlist, put this video on in the background, and just feel how cozy and charming this is!
I’m not interested in writing about the concept of nostalgia or its utilization in late-capitalism and/or the collective trauma of a pandemic or whatever vis a vis New Pokémon Snap. So instead here is every Pokémon featured in the cave level from the original N64 Pokémon Snap ranked by what they would sing at karaoke and how good it would be.
14. Zubat would croon “She Will Be Loved” by Maroon 5 off-key and get mad at people who happen to be leaving the bar during their performance.
13. Grimer would be a white guy doing Wiz Khalifa. He will butcher it. Everyone will be uncomfortable.
12. Weepinbell would do a Disney song and it will suck.
11. Jynx would dedicate her song to her boyfriend and then do a very warbly rendition of “Landslide” and it’ll make the crowd confused and uncomfortable for just a whole bunch of different reasons
10. Magikarp would do a very slow, 5-minute song that nobody’s ever heard of. It has a full minute of guitar solo played by a MIDI keyboard that Magikarp just stands on stage nodding along to. There is still a whole chorus to go.
9. Ditto would do a song that somebody else has already done earlier that night, obviously.
8. Jigglypuff would be hella shitfaced and do “Sugar, We’re Going Down” but would only actually scream the choruses and either doesn’t know or is too drunk to pay attention to the verses. Jigglypuff really worked up the crowd first, so it will be a huge disappointment when you realize what’s going on.
7. Articuno will do “Born in the USA” and some people will be extremely into it and some people will be extremely not into it.
6. Koffing will throw everyone for a loop and do a surprisingly touching rendition of a Phoebe Bridgers song, but it will bring the mood down.
5. The Bulbasaur that are actually Ditto would do “Piano Man”. Everyone will roll their eyes, but get really into it. The crowd is all singing along by the end of it.
4. Pikachu is reluctantly dragged on stage by their friend to do Lady Gaga’s parts of “Shallow” with them. It turns out they’re a breathtakingly good singer, but they don’t like to show off. A bunch of men try to buy them a drink at the bar afterward, but Pikachu doesn’t drink. Pikachu leaves the bar to go home at 10pm on the dot.
3. Victreebell would do a terrifyingly metal rendition of Britney Spears’ “Toxic”. It will work astoundingly well.
2. Muk would do Biggie Smalls’ “Big Poppa” and it will slap.
1. Pikachu Riding Articuno would be the equivalent of Carly Rae Jepsen showing up at your local bar for no reason, singing “Cut To The Feeling”, politely waving to the stunned crowd, and leaving. No one will ever believe you when you say this happened.
Full disclosure I know nothing about Final Fantasy.
Materia System: The Trash Garbage Playlist, serves a multifaceted, possibly contradictory purpose of grounding you (it is gentle, and all songs prominently feature strings) while enabling dissociation (it weaves in songs from video game or movie soundtracks, indulging an escapist mood in a work playlist that knows you’d rather not think about work).
Materia System: The Character Growth System Featured in Final Fantasy VII in Which Skills and Abilities Are Tied to Items Rather Than Characters, serves a multifaceted, possibly contradictory purpose of providing structure (progression is simple, you feel like a genius when you figure out complementary combinations) while enabling flexibility (materia can be swapped between characters at any point, ironically establishing that the characters in the character growth system are only of secondary importance).
This suggests the name “Materia System” is a carefully chosen name enigmatically serving as a concise, metaphorical explanation for its purpose as a playlist, but honestly I was just mildly hungover and wished I were playing Final Fantasy VII or watching a movie I’d seen a dozen times instead of working. I swear Tim Rogers wrote or uttered the phrase “the elegance of the materia system” at some point in time, but I cannot find it now that I am sharing this playlist that I arbitrarily named based on that phrase which may or may not exist lodged in my brain.
Anyway, leave a comment about how you’re mad that One-Winged Angel isn’t in this playlist or whatever.
Alternate Reality SimCity 3000 Soundtrack
So, my all-time favorite album is the soundtrack to SimCity 3000.
This sounds like a joke and I have no way to assure you it is not. So instead, I’m going to talk about what I like about it and what I tried to do with this playlist. Also, I think I might talk about Trash Garbage a little, because it’s my blog and I get to put whatever I want here until Matthew removes it during copyediting.
The reason I want to talk about Trash Garbage a bit is that when I sat down to earnestly talk about why I had picked songs out for this playlist I had a fleeting thought of “wow, how unlike this blog this is”. Which is true, but it doesn’t mean that this is out of place. What I liked about Trash Garbage from the inception is that Matthew and I really never had any intention of what this should be. The bulk of our conversations about this blog essentially boil down to one of us saying “this feels pretty Trash Garbage” and the other going “I agree, post it”. It’s that sort of creative freedom that’s actually enabled me to try doing some of this, which I would not have considered otherwise.
Bringing us back to the soundtrack to SimCity 3000, AKA my favorite album. Last year, I went through some personal hardships and needed something that didn’t sound like anything else I was already listening to. I discovered this soundtrack. I’m not really sure how; I think I had listened to other game soundtracks and this came up as related. (ed note but still fuck algorithms don’t forget this.) I didn’t know anything about SimCity (a thing that came up today, when I mentioned that I would post this, was Matthew saying “the description should be like an in-game SimCity notification or something!” to which I responded “I’ve never actually played SimCity”), but somehow found myself charmed by a very optimistic and charming album full of music that I think perfectly matches the idea of what some people endeavor to achieve with ambient music, creating songs that are fundamentally interesting to focus on, but completely capable of blending into the background. I became fascinated with this album, and it started to score every workday, and then eventually started to become the soundtrack to the time I was spending at home.
But obviously at some point you just listen to an album enough that you crave a little variety, and I found myself in the strange position of wanting to listen not to the SimCity 3000 soundtrack, but to music that sounded like the SimCity 3000soundtrack. Upset I couldn’t find those albums readily existing, I started to pull tracks that reminded me of it into a small playlist. Not only does this playlist contain music that simply sounds like SimCity’s soundtrack (“The Sheriff”, “The Mirage”) it also contains works that simply remind me of the plastic utopia of the Sims universe (all the James Ferraro that made it on here) and, finally, songs that the original composer, Jerry Martin, mentioned inspired him when he was composing this soundtrack (“Zombie”, “A Remark You Made”)
It’s obvious that I recommend listening to the original soundtrack as well, but I also feel obligated to point out that Jerry Martin runs his own website where he occasionally makes high-quality downloads of this music available for free. So maybe check that out, if this is your kinda thing.
Every so often, I get to publish a playlist that was a part of the conception of this blog, which basically means talking with Matthew resulted in a “oh, you want something specifically for the mood you’re in? Lemme throw together a quick playlist” kind of thing. This one was the result of a conversation in which I was bemoaning the lack of appropriate ~Halloween vibes~ after moving to a city where the weather is the exact same all year. Matthew provided a lot of the initial suggestions, and then we spun this out into what it is now, which is a weird playlist hopefully suitable for your Halloween evening.
It also contains the song from the Salad Fingers flash cartoons. So there’s that.
i can’t really get into twitch streams
sounds like: chill work vibes, a lightly chatty friend you can just put in the corner of your screen and not really pay attention to, a parasocial relationship
my romantic notion of a twitch stream may be more simply just a virtual approximation of a coffee shop (remember those? oh, covid), of working or reading while surrounded by the light conversation and arbitrary behavior of strangers. it doesn’t appear that this is what twitch actually is (since in practice lots of streamers do talk “with” you, reading and reacting to the chat), but this playlist is a musical adaptation of the atmosphere i was hoping for. one of the more literal playlists, the thesis here is slower/chiller work music characterized by the presence of human voices throughout. not vocals (with one or two exceptions), but exploring other ways that voices are used as instruments and woven into music.
pairs well with work that’s going to take a minute, watching someone not totally know where they’re going in dark souls, tuesdays