A couple of weeks ago, I was lamenting that I was having difficulty finding groups who go against the grain and cover more obscure video game tracks. While I enjoy the various covers from Final Fantasy, Legend of Zelda and Megaman, I find that they start to blur together and there is very little difference between the various artists.
As usual, someone will mention a new band on twitter and I will more often then not check them out and see what they offer. That is how I came across the band Year 200X and their album We are Error, released back in August 2008. Normally I try and cover a band's most recent performance, but considering that the group has only the one album, with a new EP to be released later this month, I thought I should give them a chance.
Starting off the album is a cover to the Megaman 3 Intro theme and at the start of the song, the group decided to use sound effects from the game as a lead up to the main song. Honestly this was a bad idea because I find that they are more of a distraction and a mess then anything else. The rest of the song is a nice rock cover of the track, but the chiptune portion is a bit of a mess. However, that part of the song is less then 20 seconds and the rest is a great cover.
Followed by the Intro Theme is a cover of The Moon from Ducktales. Its a good cover and one of the better covers of the track I have heard in a while. I consider this track the spiritual successor to CarboHydroM's 2004 track Duck Side of the Moon. The Moon is a fun arrangement of a classic track and it is my belief that Year 200X did a great cover of a beloved track.
As I said at the start, the rest of the album covers tracks from games like Journey to Silius, Contra and even the much maligned Metal Gear. All the tracks follow the same basic music formula and while I myself enjoy rock arrangements of classic video game tracks, there are people who would find it boring. However I do say to give Year 200X a chance as they decided to cover music that barely, if ever got remixed.
However, given that all the tracks are simply rock remixes, I can't really add anything else to this review as after the first few tracks, you know what to expect from the group. What I truly wish they would have done is added lyrics to the songs they covered. I feel that it would give the group their own unique sound. Again I am aware that this album is from 2008 and at the time, adding lyrics was uncommon, but I feel that Year 200X could have made it work. Don't get me wrong, this is not a bad album, but it does fall a bit flat.
I do wish I had come across Year 200X a lot sooner as the group is talented and I do enjoy their music. However, because these days Video Game cover bands are so prevalent, I do hope that the group decides to follow The Megas route and star adding lyrics to their tracks. There is a bit of irony in me saying this as 6 years ago, I would have balked at the suggestion of lyrics added to a cover.
You can find Year 200X: We Are Error on their bandcamp page.
Next time I wish for something new musically, I think I will for Act III from the Protomen.
This is Daimo Mac and I am lost in the music.