Entries in Ultraklystron (1)


State of the Art (of Nerdcore)

Nerdcore needs some organization.

I guess I should explain that, mainly because a four-word statement of that variety doesn't make for much of a blog entry. What I mean by that is that Nerdcore has some problems in the "recognition" area, and I think it's because of inadequate representation. Anyone who's here knows about Nerdcore, because we are a Nerdcore band and you are probably Nerdcore fans (and yes, I am just gonna keep capitalizing it -- do you have a problem with that?). But how many popular and famous Nerdcore acts can you name?

If you're being completely honest with yourself, the answer is probably "none". MC Chris (who is Nerdcore for the purposes of this conversation, and whose name I will capitalize, too) is pseudo-famous because of his association with Adult Swim. MC Frontalot is at the top of the heap in Nerdcore, but your average citizen has never heard of him. People like YTCracker and Beefy have appeared on nerdy cable networks (yeah, G4!), but that's like saying Cheng Kazuhiko is famous because he's a chef who won an Iron Chef competition in Japan. People who are really into Iron Chef or really into Japanese food may or may not recognize his name, but this does not a famous and popular celebrity make.

Now that I'm done talking about how not-famous we all are, I'm going to go ahead and flip things around and point out that a number of nerdcore MCs are Internet famous. Online, we know who MC Frontalot, MC Chris, Beefy, YTCracker, and all of them are. We hear the music, see the fan-made videos, go to the forums, et cetera. We know the popular names and some of the less popular names. Most of us know the guys above, a lot of us remember Optimus Rhyme and have heard of Supercommuter, many of us know who the Former Fat Boys and Doctor Popular are, some of us know Ultraklystron and Southside, and a few of you have even heard of Death*Star. The problem is that in such a DIY industry, it's really hard to get a grasp on who everyone is, and the community should be more tightly-knit than that.

Let's be real on this one; we're a bunch of nerds who rap and make beats, and it behooves us to get each other's backs if we intend to get listeners. We don't all have to be best friends (but wouldn't it be cool if we were?) or constantly guest on each other's albums (but we could) to do this, but it'd be nice if we were giving each other shouts out; more than that, it'd be nice if we were hands-on about centralizing the genre somehow. I mean, for fuck's sake, why isn't there a Nerdcore Wiki out there already? Wikipedia tosses most entries about us out on their asses because we're not "noteworthy", but it's not like we can't make one ourselves. That's a pretty good start for noteworthiness.

If someone did this already, btw, then it's my own damn fault for not finding it, but I did look. I just looked at work, where half of the Internet knocks on the door but the firewall won't answer.

There's a lot more I could say on the subject (and I really mean that; I'm cutting four already-written paragraphs from this, because it's just too damn long), but I'll say it another time. For now, I'll just end with the note that I want Nerdcore to gain credibility, and I just think it's time we rallied around some kind of flag. And by "rally" I mean really rally -- get each other's back, promote other artists, do more shows together, start working on community-based projects together RALLY.

I'll even go first, if it makes the rest of you feel better. Seriously.

-- Go check out Southside at www.southsideliquors.com. They are an awesome Nerdcore group that deserves more exposure than they're getting, and I really can't say enough good things about them.

-- If you're a Nerdcore artist and you want to collaborate with Death*Star, feel free to hit me up. I'm open to it.

-- If you're a Seattle-area Nerdcore artist and you want to play a show with us, let us know where we can listen to you. We generally play with anyone who wants to play.

-- I think I'm gonna look into starting that Nerdcore Wiki myself, unless anyone else wants to do it for me. I'll be a major contributor, either way.

And that's where I'm gonna start, folks. Right there.

Don't fake the funk on a nasty dunk,