Start a riot, music lovers! There’s a new Nagus of Nerdcore!
Earlier this year, when we thought disease and social unrest were all the noise, the band Hyperspace released their fourth album, Emulator, to delight and incite fans across the galaxy. Hearkening to the fast-paced rhythms and stripped-down sound of nascent punk from the '70s and '80s (and let’s be fair, some '90s too!), this Atlantan trio shows they know their roots and can still open up the scene while gushing lyrics about Jyn Erso and Scott Pilgrim.
For sure, track nine’s “Ramona” sounds exactly like what you’d imagine Scott Pilgrim’s band, Sex Bob-omb, to be ballading about right after our hero meets his beloved “Rammy” for the first time. The song is slower than most of the songs on the album, and very Weezer-esque. This gives space for vocalist/guitarist, Jason Kochis, to offer in emotive, pleading tones, “I don’t want Knives…I’m still looking for my Ramona!” Right on! Never before has desperation for that subspace-skating, ninja delivery girl been expressed so emphatically.
But it’s another, faster tempo ballad, “Baroness,” that hurled the album’s most memorable stanza, “I’ll be your Destro, you can be my Baroness.” Lyric gold! Be honest, did you ever think a song about a G.I. Joe character would put such a huge smile on your face? Well, sir or madam, it would take a mask of beryllium steel to hide it.
Unrequited Love Abounds!
If you get the impression all the songs on Emulator are about unrequited love, you’re half right. “Jackie,” the first single from the album, doesn’t relate to any fandom, but relates to everyone who’s fallen in love with the perfect person oblivious to their existence. Likewise, “Halle Berry” is a strange love song about crushing on the actress after seeing her in Swordfish, and “The Ghost of Carrie Fisher” evokes the most unrequited love of all. How exactly do you properly express your devotion to a woman so out of reach she is both a famous Hollywood actress AND deceased? Apparently with words like, “Don’t you know, you’re my only hope?”
Yet, my personal fave of the album, “D & D,” is the opposite of all those—requited love abounding. This upbeat song is a tribute from a nerd to his perfect nerdy girlfriend. Wishful thinking? Nope! I can testify these relationships exist! In fact, many of the lyrics strike true to my own wonderful relationship. One of us is a Ravenclaw and one is a Hufflepuff. We both play D & D. Also, one of us spends all the time catching Pokémon for the other. Spot on! This song is so great; I’m totally throwing it on a mixtape for my husband’s Festivus stocking.
If you ever loved They Might Be Giants, Ramones, Devo, Weezer, or are just a fan of Nerdcore, this album is definitely a must-have. And check out their prior albums while you’re at it; you just might learn of their love for Carrie Fisher pre-posthumously.
Here's where to get it!
A digital review copy of this album was provided to Geek to Geek by Hyperspace.