Tag Archives: Music


I like music – like most people presumably do – but I am hardly a music geek. I wish I could create my own. But that’s a talent I was not blessed with. For my work, there are really one two modes: Either, I work by complete silence (most of the time) or I work listening to music that’s turned up way too loud on my headphones. The later happens when I am in creative burst mode.

Like right now.

It’s 1:30am and I should sleep. Really. I have to get up at 6am for some #souldraining. But how can I sleep, when I have to chronicle the rise and fall of the Terran Federation?

Anyway, as an aside, I thought I’d post some of the stuff I am listening to while world-building.

Right now that’s the album “Drink the Sea” by The Glitch Mob. Especially “Fortune Days”, “Animus Vox”, “Bad Wings”, and “We Swarm”. My playlist is also looping through some tracks from the “Tron Legacy: Reconfigured” album.

At other times, I enjoyed the music from the Battlestar Galactica series (heavy on percussion, I guess – reminds me a whole lot of Homeworld, but that’s probably just me imagining things). I also have the Homeworld tracks, ripped from my Homeworld game CD which I seem to have lost in one of my many moves over the years. Awesome music – I wish I had as cool a soundtrack for my science fiction universe. Maybe some day.

Of course you couldn’t do science fiction without classical music – Kubrick saw to that – and I once listened to the Blue Danube for an entire day. Holst’s The Planets are another must though I am not a huge fan of the tracks other than “Mars – the Bringer of War”.

I also collect game and movie soundtracks. The music of some of the Baldur’s Gate titles – and sequels and spinoffs – was pretty epic, as is the Guild Wars music. Michael Hoenig and Heremy soule are great! For movies, pick any adventure, action or science fiction movie. Pirates of the Caribbean, The Gladiator, The “Imperial March” from Star Wars, The Mummy, you name it.

The sound track of The Fifth Element has a special place in my heart, as does the movie. “Timecrash” makes me wish I had a decent music setup here that could produce decent base sound (but my neighbors probably appreciate that I don’t).

Some of my world-building can get quite weird. For example, I do have a playlist I call “Mythos Mecha”. That might give you a hint what it was for… it includes Cab Calloway, The Inkspots, the music from Bubblegum Crisis (Konya wa Harikeen is awesome!), “masked Ball” from Eyes Wide Shut, “Love Removal Machine” by The Cult, “Go!” by Tones to Tail, Tesla’s “Last Action Hero”, “Where Evil grows” by Poppy Family, and a whole lot of instrumental stuff from movie soundtracks. Eclectic, eh?

As a final, special tip – you can actually find awesome music on ccMixter, Jamendo, and remix.kwed.org – but you gotta dig through a lot of bad music to find it. Still, how can you not love, for example, Ditto Ditto, or Houdini Roadshow? Or, hell, Sad Robot by pornophonique? What can I say, I grew up on a diet of 6581.

On the subject of The Mythos – Another really good album to listen to – in my opinion, as always – is “Live on the Radio” by White Ghost Shivers. Really great 1920s Harlem Jazz style music.

I posted on this subject before – my playlist for the 2008 NaNoWriMo reads like my approach to music consumption during my ‘work’ really hasn’t changed. Getting old and set in my ways, I am.


CD Cover Game #9: Cliffside

Here’s my latest entry to the CD-Cover game – I haven’t posted these in a while. And, before you ask: #8 is not missing, but the licensing of the base image I used changed so it’ll have to wait until I clear that up.

Cliffside: The Best Accessory
Cliffside: The Best Accessory

Original Art: Senales, by José María Pérez Nuñez; cc-by-nc.

From the looks of it, Cliffside is probably an “artsy” band…

My other CD-Covers:

Update, 2020-01-09: Ouch, that kerning! What was I thinking.

CD Cover Game #7: Eryx Elegans

Here’s another attempt at the CD cover game:

Eryx Elegans, 'Run Away From Life'

I actually edited the photo in question this time; if you look at the original you will see a woman in the photo which really distracted from the composition:

Original Photo
Original Photo

Yes – it is quite easy to see the photo was edited, but after all this is not an exercise in forging photographic evidence 🙂

To critique my own work, the speech bubble is probably a little too dominant and the “band name” logo colors might not mesh perfectly with the rest of the image.

Original photo: Feliz 2009, by murilocardoso. Licensed cc-by-nc-sa.

CD Cover Game #6: Kryoneri

I needed another music group to refer to in my NaNoWriMo novel. It had to be something beachy, and hence, Kryoneri was born.

Kryoneri, 'Pleased with Themselves'

I cheated on the CD Cover game, and used one of my own photos. Searching flickr for a cc-licensed photo simply seemed like a waste of my time when I had a couple of appropriate photos sitting around. The one I used was taken on Bali.

Here’s the – admittedly fairly random – track list for the album:

  1. Legends of Bora Bora
  2. California Beach Queen
  3. Sand and Sun
  4. Memories of Coral Reef
  5. Sailing through Paradise
  6. Spanish Main
  7. Land of a Million Islands
  8. Surfing the Waves
  9. Torchlight Tranquility
  10. Bali Sunset
  11. Moon over Waikiki

Update: Version 2 of the cover.

Kryoneri, 'Pleased with Themselves' - Version 2

I like this 2nd one better, I think.

CD Cover Game #5: Brockville Park

I needed a band to refer to in my NaNoWriMo novel, and none of the ones I “created” for the CD Cover Game so far seemed to be appropriate. So I cheated a little on #5, and repeated the Wikipedia random thing until I had a band name that sounded like an alternative rock group.

Brockville Park, 'Even My Own Mother'

I kind of like the basic design. Someone should start making crossword puzzles based on hexagons.

“Even My Own Mother” is the debut album of local newcomer band Brockville Park’s, and its catchy beat has catapulted it top the top of the charts. Tracks:

  1. Voyage of the Navigator
  2. Saint Brendan City Blues
  3. When Worlds Collide
  4. Slaver – Hero
  5. Forbidden Candy
  6. Ballad of the Apple
  7. Even My Own Mother
  8. Go! (Away!)
  9. Melon Tree
  10. Sheltered
  11. M Stands For Witten
  12. The Price of Admiralty
  13. Fall Out Four The Rest Of Us (Bonus)

Original photo by Ecstaticist, cc-by-nc-sa.

CD Cover Game #4: Kolonia Zerechowa

Kolonia Zerechowa, the Polish African American rap group known for its biting social commentary, has released their latest album: Steal with good Judgment.

Kolonia Zerechowa, 'Steal with good Judgement'

The controversial album contains tracks critical of the Church, making numerous references to recent scandals and the Church’s violent history in the middle ages. The track “Wallet Salvation” openly attacks American television preachers. Religious groups across America have condemned the album as “lies” and its many sexual references as “sinful”. The band has reacted cooly to the complaints, stating that “the truth always hurts such people the most”.

Original photo by mikedefiant, cc-by-nc-sa.

NaNoWriMo Music Playlist

I work either in complete silence, or I create a play list with music appropriate for whatever I am working on. This was true in the 1980s and 1990s when I did a lot of coding, it is still true for my world building, and it will hold true for writing novels.

For my NaNoWriMo project, the playlist is currently this:

  • Let it whip by The Dazz Band
  • Earth Died Screaming by Tom Waits
  • Where Evil Grows by The Poppy Family
  • Cities in Dust by Siouxsie & The Banshees
  • Control by Traci Lords
  • Love Removal Machine by The Cult
  • Burn by Sister Machine Gun
  • Baby Did A Bad Thing by Chris Isaak
  • Masked Ball by Jocelyn Pook
  • When Worlds Divide by The Clutters
  • Clash City Girl also by The Clutters
  • Black is The Night (Code RMX) by Code
  • Go! by Tones to Tail
  • iam the sun by auto-auto
  • Great Balls of Fire by Buddy Holly
  • Cock the Hammer by Cypress Hill
  • Last Action Hero by Tesla
  • Mass Destruction (Single Mix) by Faithless
  • Oops Oh My by Tweet
  • Edge of Reality by Elvis Presley
  • Bitch by the Rolling Stones
  • Hammer to Fall by Queen
  • Gimme The Prize also by Queen
  • Armageddeon Time by The Clash
  • NYc’s like a Graveyard by the Moldy Peaches

Needless to say, not all of these have a direct relation to the story. Some do. The selection is as much intended to just keep me focused on fast writing as it is on putting me in the right mood.

Once I am done with the novel, it may be fun to point out what parts of it I thought about when I picked the music. Of all the things that distinguishes movies from novels I think having a sound track is probably the greatest advantage for movies, and the least appreciated by the average consumer.

Anyway. Eta 36 hours.

The Revised CD-Cover Game

Here are the revised rules to the CD-Cover game. I found it originally on Pedro’s blog, but I had to change them slightly. If anybody else wants to play, let me know – I’d love to see your creations!

The rules:

1. Go to the Wikipedia random article page (en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Special:Random). The title of the article is your band name. (For a twist, use the Special:Random page of an alternate language version of Wikipedia.)

1. Go to the very last quote on random quotations (www.quotationspage.com/random.php3). The last four words of the last quote are your album title. You may opt to use only three words, if that improves the quote. (For example, I got the quote “To sway an audience, you must watch them as you speak.”, by C. Kent Wright. “Them as you speak” sounds pretty stupid. “As you speak” makes for a much better album title!) You are not allowed to use more than four or less than three words, and you may not change any of them.

1. Go to Flickr’s “interesting photos from the last seven days” page (www.flickr.com/explore/interesting/7days/). Use the first photo that allows you to legally use and modify it (“All rights reserved” is out!). You may have to reload this page multiple times.

Flickr does provide a page that filters for a Creative Commons license (www.flickr.com/creativecommons/), but for our purpose this isn’t very useful: There is little randomness, and the photos include completely useless ones like photos of text. The method in rule#3 is much better, even if it takes a while to find a photo under an appropriate license.

My covers so far:

You’ll find new covers under the CD Covers tag.

CD Cover Game #1: Silver Creek Township

Alright, since I was told to “put both up”, here’s the first cover I made for the CD cover game, the one I originally posted to my personal blog:

Silver Creek Township, 'A Pound of Cleverness'

Again the world-building angle is that this is a popular music group in the world Terra.

The photo is by Calliyan, cc-by-sa.