1985 – G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero

Almost two years ago, I bought this giant box set of my childhood. It was the G.I. Joe A Real American Hero: Complete Collectors Set [The Complete Series]. GI Joe was “the toy” I played with in the days before video games. I watched the Ninja Turtles cartoon, and I was one of the few who may have liked GO-Bots more than Transformers – but when it came to having a ton of any one kind of toy? GI Joe was my weakness.

The GI Joe cartoon was an early morning addiction. I have a childhood memory of waking up in the middle of the night and going in to the living room, then turning on the TV. My parents came out of their bedroom and sent me back to bed. I just wanted to watch GI Joe, but it was only about 4:30 in the morning and not 7:30! Oh the days of being a child, without even having a clock in your room! I just lived for all-things GI Joe. I’ve handed my toys down to my cousin’s children, and when we talked about our memories, we came to found out we both bought the same mini-footlocker of DVDs to relive our childhood! These GI Joe episodes were so memorable, and I think I’m going to rip and digitize my collection in the near future. So I thought I would share and see if anybody else remembered the GI Joe series! If ever there was a promo for a must-have toy, GI Joe was it, and they had me hook, line, and sinker. I even had the game for my Commodore 64! The least you can do is relive the good ol’ days, with some nice bonus treats found in the G.I. Joe A Real American Hero: Complete Collectors Set [The Complete Series].

2013 – The Grammar Club – Bioavailable

I’ve mentioned The Grammar Club before. I talked about their 2008 album, Bremelanotide. It’s a pop album featuring rap, chiptune, and blending genres into something simply head-bobbingly enjoyable.

One of the rappers on the album, Beefy, said that the group may never make another track like “Balloon Fight” or “Alternate Ending” – but he was quite happy with how these tracks came out on their newest album, Bioavailable. I’ve only had a chance to listen through it once, and I was admittedly a little distracted, but I had to let people know about it, because I really keep finding this super-group of nerdcore songwriters the kind of music I keep going back to.

And if you’re the kind of person who likes remixing music or making mashups, you can pick up the Accapellas or Instrumentals. Even if you just want to listen to the regular Bioavailable album, it’s all available on BandCamp at a Pay-What-You-Want rate. You can get it for free. Or, you can pay ten bucks like I did and just do a little something nice for these guys!

Archer – Seasons 1-4 in HD

Archer. A cartoon that isn’t for kids. At all. It is an animated series about an alcoholoic, womanizing secret-agent defends the world from evil, while dealing with repressed mommy issues. And every minute of it is hysterical.

I knew the show had promise, but now that we’re four seasons deep in to this show, it just keeps getting better. One of the things I love is that each episode is just stuffed full of great comedy moments. The show is a run away success, but they aren’t trying to drag it out with pointless side plots and new story arcs. There is one main plot, and each episode is going to make you laugh, whether it progresses the story or not. It’s not trying too hard to be anything other than what it is. And every week it pushes the envelope of what you thought you could get away with on television.

Archer: The Complete Season Four is available for pre-order on DVD – or, if you’re more tech savvy than your friends, you can easily stream it online in HD, along with HD versions of seasons one, two, and three. It’s not for everyone, but it is something that I enjoy immenslely, and I encourage anyone who hasn’t watched it yet to shut up, sit down, and binge watch these four seasons!

2006 – Gym Class Heroes – The Papercut Chronicles

“Hi, have you ever wondered what it would be like to listen to some music?” These words open the Gym Class Heroes album The Papercut Chronicles. The album is an aural treat to anyone who enjoys vivid imagery. Petrified Life and the Twice Told Joke (Decrepit Bricks) is a track early on the album that includes beautiful lines: “I walk down / dead end streets like I didn’t see the sign / just to turn around and walk back / that’s fine and dandy but / what’s whack is the fact / I’m still walkin’ / like thank God for Walkmans.” The lyrics are put forth by the lead singer, who goes by many names, but is probably best known as Travie-Trav McCoy.

The album features it songs like Make Out Club, about having brief relationships with lots of women, then Cupid’s Chokehold, which made them a mainstream success, and seems to be more about finding the one. But then there are tracks like Taxi Driver which is an industry-referential track that names literally dozens of other bands. It is tracks like this that come out and remind you that Gym Class Heroes is a band, and not just a rapper. They go on tour with indie-rock festivals more than performing at rap or R&B concerts.

Other songs get a little darker, such as So Long Friend. I haven’t done any research to be sure if this was a track he genuinely recorded in his apartment, but it gives the sound that it was an impromptu freestyle recording after hearing the news of the death of a friend. Pillmatic deals with prescription drug addiction. Faces in the Hall is another serious song, which literally turns out to be about extreme consequences of homophobia.

Simple Livin’ is great song that picks the tempo back up and includes in the chorus “Simple livin’ is a bitch / but then / I do it well / some are fortunate to make it / and some of’em fail” – a song about working multiple jobs and making ends meet, all while he works on his musical career. Apollo 3-1-5 beautifully remixes radio transmissions from the NASA Apollo missions and puts a little music over top of them.

This is another one of those albums I can listen to again and again, beginning to end. You need to do yourself a favor and ignore genres you might not typically listen to. Trust me, sit back and enjoy The Papercut Chronicles.

Songs I remember… volume 1?

I normally talk about movies or albums, but today I just want to talk about a few songs. There are artists and bands who most people probably wouldn’t even consider as one-hit-wonders because they don’t even know one of their songs. But there were a few of those songs that started to get radio play, I really liked them, but they just never took off. For some reason, almost all of those songs had some kind of melancholy to them. It must have been a phase. I won’t even talk about them, I just encourage you to click the link and listen to the sample song. Tell me if you remember it, or if you had the same “oh, man, I haven’t heard this in years” moment that I did when I was thinking about this article. So, in no particular order, here are a few songs I think you should hear.




Josh Joplin – Camera One


Amanda Ghost – Idol


Moby – The Sky is Broken


New Radicals – You Only Get what you Give


Chill Pill Dancers – Zoot Suit Riot (I still don’t know HOW this song came in to my life, rather than the Cherry Poppin’ Daddies version, but I still love this version, to this day!)


Shawn Mullins – Lullaby


Swirl 360 – Hey Now Now (I also loved the other song off of their first single, called Don’t Shake My World)