Electric Mouse is in the House!

Chillin'

Chillin’

Hey, hi, hello, everyone! I’m Sparkplug. Writing and music are my passions, so I was incredibly delighted to find myself accepted into the AI gang. They seem a little crazy so I’m sure I’ll fit right in. ;)

My first real introduction to anime (rather than occasional glimpses of the Toonami classics) was Tokyo Mew Mew, which still holds a special place in my heart despite all the other series I’ve fallen in love with over the years. I swing towards fantasy and action generally, but I’ll certainly check out any recommendation I’m given–which is unfortunate because I now have an ever-growing list of series that I intend to watch, although who knows if I’ll ever find the time to do so.

Music has been a part of my life since I was five years old, when I started taking piano lessons. From there I progressed to flute and eventually alto saxophone, which introduced me to the exciting and sometimes overwhelming world of jazz. Besides performance, I also have some music history and theory under my belt, so my analysis might get a bit technical at times, but on the whole I really just enjoy playing and listening to music. Recently I’ve started transcribing and composing as well! My tastes span pretty much every genre in some capacity (except country/bluegrass) but a few all-time favourite artists would have to include the Police, Imogen Heap, Escala, and Joe Hisaishi.

One genre that’s pretty high on my list is video game music. I’m more of a casual gamer than a hardcore one, but there are certain titles I’m fully invested in (Pokemon, Zelda, and Professor Layton to name a few). I’ve gotten into PC gaming a little bit, but my main experience is with consoles, both handheld and not.

A few of my other hobbies are reading and costume making, but I could go on about those for a while, and I know I ought to keep this brief since it’s just an introduction post and not a personal ramble blog. So thanks again to Zzero and the gang for welcoming me into your midst, and I hope my forthcoming reviews will make it worthwhile!

Cheers,
-Sparkplug

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A Closer Look at Asia’s Favorite Chord Progression

jjjjazz

Have you noticed throughout your years of music listening that Western pop and Asian pop, in broad generality, “feel” very different from each other? If you thought that there might be a certain harmonic disparity between the two, you’d be right. There is a specific harmonic unit that appears incredibly abundantly in the latter but rather rarely in the former, and it boils down to just three chords.

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Maoyu Maou Yuusha O.S.T. Maou – Review

Maouyuu Maou Yuusha OST Cover

Album Title: Maoyu Maou Yuusha O.S.T. Maou
Anime Title: Maoyu Maou Yuusha
Artist: Takeshi Hama, Dan Miyakawa, Akino Arai, Hisaaki Hogari, YOHKO, riya, Nao Toyama
Catalog Number: VTCL-60338
Release Type: Soundtrack
Release Date: March 20, 2013
Purchase at: CDJapan

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Gargantia on the Verdurous Planet Episode 8 – The Musical Component: The Strings in Fairlock’s Passing

gargantia-episode-08
Background: Episode 8 marks the death of Captain Fairlock, the skipper who succeeded in obtaining the loyalty of other sea captains to continue under his banner and journey with the Gargantia. In the aftermath of his death, Gargantia’s captaincy passes on to his foster daughter Ridget, who must contend with those who wish to secede from the Gargantia in pursuit of their own goals.

Analysis: Given its timbre, the violin, with its capacity to draw out a sense of melancholia, has been used to convey sadness borne out of a broken heart or a loved one’s death. It’s this latter aspect that’s worth touching upon for the purposes of looking at episode 8 of Gargantia on the Verdurous Planet, where we have quite a few violin pieces that mark a beloved captain’s passing. The use of violin music to convey the sentiments found in this moment isn’t without precedent; one of the most famous examples is Samuel Barber’s Adagio for Strings, which was played on TV when announcing the death of President John F. Kennedy and performed at the funeral of Albert Einstein. After all, death’s the final word, bringing a plethora of emotions that include pain, sorrow, and uncertainty. Pieces like Barber’s Adagio allow our emotions to manifest in musical form, a medium that can convey thoughts and feelings where words simply would not do. [Read more...]

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Gargantia on the Verdurous Planet ED Single – Sora to Kimi to Message – Review

Gargantia ED Choucho

Album Title: Sora to Kimi to Message
Anime Title: Gargantia on the Verdurous Planet (Suisei no Gargantia)
Artist: ChouCho
Catalog Number: LACM-14098
Release Type: OP/ED Single
Release Date: May 15, 2013
Purchase at: CDJapan, Play-Asia

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