Advance Wars official artwork
Advance Wars official artwork
Photo Copyright Nintendo — Source: Nintendo UK

The recent resurgence of Intelligent Systems’ Fire Emblem series is one of the most surprising and impressive success stories to come out of gaming within the past decade. The series was on the verge of cancellation by Nintendo when Fire Emblem Awakening released to strong critical and commercial success, saving the franchise. The series has since risen to become one of Nintendo’s marquee franchises, arguably standing toe-to-toe with the likes of Mario, The Legend of Zelda, and Metroid. The revitilization of Fire Emblem in a global market is certainely a notable achievement and a deserved one, but it does raise…


Right before our eyes, we are watching the chaotic free-for-all of television streaming come to a close. The market is becoming frustratingly fragmented at a time when it seems that every major media corporation is launching their own streaming service on which their content will become exclusive. Gone are the days of reliably cutting the cord by subscribing to only one or two platforms. As the sheer number of essential streaming services seems to be increasing exponentially, the ecosystem is slowly beginning to resemble the cable services to which we all vowed to never return.

The meteoric rise of television…


Source: iTunes

I don’t remember exactly how I stumbled across this record, but I am so happy that I did. Prior to this, I was only vaguely aware of Dan Potthast as a musician. I had, of course, listened to some of the more popular songs that he made with his band, MU330, like the classic “Highway,” but my knowledge ended there. …


Source: iTunes

The time has finally come. Weezer’s Black Album is a reality. It’s safe to say that this album is one that I have been incredibly excited about and have been awaiting eagerly since before its official announcement. I became a Weezer fan fairly recently, a bit after the release of their stellar White Album, with which I immediately fell in love. Quickly, I explored the diverse catalog of the band, eventually settling on Pinkerton as my favorite album from the group, with White following close behind. Because I listened to a majority of Weezer’s music during the same time period…


Source: Amazon

Following the ska-punk craze of the late 1990s, the genre seemed to fade away as quickly as it had emerged. Many bands had their brief moment in the spotlight before disbanding entirely, returning to the underground from which they came, or, in a few notable cases, attempting to adapt to the changing musical tastes of the fickle public. By the late 1990s and the early 2000s, pop-punk had become one of the mainstream’s music genres of choice, with bands like Blink-182, New Found Glory, and Sum 41 achieving major success during this time period.

It makes sense that some of…


Source: iTunes

As of a couple of weeks ago I, like many others, knew Fountains of Wayne only as that band that did “Stacy’s Mom” and I never looked deeper into their catalog for more songs. I’m not sure why this occurred, because I truly believe that “Stacy’s Mom” is one of the greatest songs ever created. Whatever the reason may be, when deciding what album to do a retrospective on for Record Retrospects, I decided to give a Fountains of Wayne album a shot. What better place to start than with the album that features their big hit? Going into this…


Source: Genius

Ska is, to my dismay, a relatively obscure musical genre. While there were a few short-lived moments in which ska broke into the mainstream, it has remained a mostly underground music scene. There are loads of excellent ska bands making great music to this day and for the most part, they don’t get the attention that they deserve. One of the few bands that became a household name was the Mighty Mighty Bosstones, arguably the band at the forefront of the third wave ska movement in the late 1990’s. Their greatest mainstream success came with the fantastic 1997 record, Let’s…


Source: Vinyl Collective

I often wish that I had grown up during the pop-punk heyday of the early 2000s that I just barely missed. There is undoubtedly still great pop-punk music being made today, but there’s just something about the energy during this time and the sheer abundance of great, successful bands that make it feel like the glory days of pop-punk. Of all the bands to emerge during this time, there are a few significant examples that really made an impact and have become legendary figures in the pop-punk community. One such example is Canadian band, Sum 41. They are easily one…


Source: iTunes

Weezer made an indelible mark on the music industry with their 1994 debut album, the self-titled Weezer, known colloquially as the Blue Album. Backed by a few breakout hit singles, the Blue Album catapulted Weezer into immediate stardom and suddenly the band had made it cool to be uncool. Rivers Cuomo could stand on stage and blankly stare forward while still being a complete rockstar. They were something completely new and people loved it. The album went triple platinum within a few years of its release. Then came the band’s sophomore album, Pinkerton in 1996. This album is undoubtedly one…


Source — iTunes

Ska-punk is my all-time favorite music genre. As many are well aware, ska-punk reached its height of popularity in the late 1990’s, mainly centered on the United States. During this era, there were three bands that I consider to be at the forefront of this movement, each with their own specifically unique style of ska-punk. The Mighty Mighty Bosstones reached the most mainstream popularity, with their self-described “ska-core” style of music, blending ska-punk with hardcore. Reel Big Fish remained a constant fixture of the ska-punk scene, with their horn-driven, high-energy ska songs and finally, Less Than Jake.

They heavily lean…

Leo S

writing about music and media // ska is forever.

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