» Full Dark, No Stars - Stephen King's new novella questions mankind's ability to trust others.
[02.21.2011 by Bridget Doyle]


 » The Top 30 Albums of 2010 - Fashionably, fabulously late, our favorite music (and believe me, there was a LOT) of 2010, the year that some have called the best year for music ever. And only some of those fools work here. Plenty of usual suspects, lots of ties and a few surprises that I won't spoil, including our unexpected #1.
[12.24.2010 by The LAS Staff]


 » Live: Surfer Blood/The Drums at Lincoln Hall, Chicago, IL - Remember when Weezer used to put together records that you could sing along to and rock out to? That's what Surfer Blood's show was like!
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Music Reviews

Screaming Females - Castle Talk
»Screaming Females
Castle Talk
Don Giovanni
Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross - The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
»Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross
The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
The Null Corporation
Deerhunter - Halcyon Digest
Halcyon Digest
No Age - Everything in Between
»No Age
Everything in Between
Sub Pop
Robyn - Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
The Walkmen - Lisbon
»The Walkmen
Fat Possum
The Advantage
5 Rue Christine

Rating: 7/10 ?

December 13, 2005
If a significant amount of your childhood was spent conquering original Nintendo games, it was hard not to be charmed upon hearing The Advantage's first album. Unabashed in its geekiness, The Advantage's eponymous debut was comprised of twenty songs dedicated to recreating the soundtrack to those wasted days in the mid to late eighties spent staring at a TV screen, a small controller clutched in the death grip of an enthralled eight year old. Whereas the originals were a stream of blips and beeps coughed out by the archaic video game consul, The Advantage took those memorable tunes and fleshed them out using a full band.

I can't get enough of the nostalgia accompanying the distinctive soundtracks to Super Maria Brothers and Zelda. There is not much else that can whisk me away to the carefree days of my youth faster than the theme from Tetris. The Advantage, however, seem to have blown their wad with the first album, their follow-up relying on tunes from not as memorable or second-rate games, bringing many skeptics back to their original question: Exactly how far can The Advantage take this gimmick? Without the recognizability to go along with the music, the novelty is lost. While I'm aware that all of these songs originated in nearly two-decades-old video games, most of them are unfamiliar, with the unfortunate result of causing The Advantage to sound like an extremely weird instrumental band.

Of course, how recognizable these songs are differs from video game nerd to video game nerd. Some spent more time indoors, shunning social contact during their adolescence than others. Most likely having moved on to Playstation 2s and Xboxes, these now twenty-something adults can mute the lush scores and licensed music that soundtrack today's games, put on The Advantage's Elf-Titled, and feel the warm smile of reminiscence spread across their face.

Reviewed by Kevin Alfoldy
An aspiring global adventurer who cut his teeth on the sandy beaches and dirty bitches of Southern California, Kevin Alfoldy now spends his non-vacation days in Brooklyn, New York, where he occasionally finds the time to rub the crust out of his eyes long enough to contribute reviews and feature articles for LAS. A longtime staff member, Kevin also captains the tattered, often half-sunk raft of EPmd, our irregular column of EP reviews.

See other reviews by Kevin Alfoldy



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