Monday, July 29, 2013

Does the Hedgehog Sing?

A few weeks ago I stumbled upon The Megas and their album 'Get Equipped,' which contains vocal arrangements of songs from Mega Man 2, and fell pretty much instantly in love with it. (Buy it here!) What I didn't expect was how much my four-year-old daughter Naomi would love it, too, considering that the extent of her Mega Man knowledge was that her daddy really liked his games and that he's blue.
Now you know as much about Mega Man as Naomi did... before the Megas!
I left the CD on while bringing Naomi to preschool one morning, and instead of asking for Winnie the Pooh or one of her other favorites, she said 'Daddy, can you turn this up?' I did, and when the song ended Naomi asked me to start it over again.

Welcome to my level, my name is Metal Man
I throw Metal Blades from my metal hands!

I think part of the appeal for Naomi is that each of the Robot Masters has a concept she can easily grasp. Metal Man is made of metal, obviously, and right there he's saying hello to Mega Man and warning him what he can do. Heat Man likes fire and things that are hot. Quick Man is the quickest of all. Bubble Man tells us:

I swim fast
I'll fight strong
You won't last
I'll live on.
This is my redemption song.

Naomi likes it because she understands that Bubble Man shoots bubbles, and swims, and lives underwater, and I like it because the entire song is about how Bubble Man feels hurt because he has the silliest power: he shoots bubbles and swims. Even when I played Mega Man 2 for the first time, at twelve years old or so, my friends and I all internalized that Bubble Man didn't seem to be in the same league as the other Robot Masters.

Out of the eight robots, of all of us
My power is so ridiculous.

And on this album, he knows it. But the very best thing the Megas have done in this song is that while Bubble Man is singing about the redemption he so desperately wants, we the Mega Man playing public know that he gets it, if not in the way he wanted. After all, the final form of Dr. Wily is weak only to the Bubble Lead. Bubble Man is unappreciated, but his weapon, at the end, is the most powerful one of all.

Naomi also likes that Mega Man is a robot (because who doesn't like robots?), but he also has a daddy. His daddy is a scientist named Dr. Light, and he has a song about how he made Mega Man to do good things in the world, and that song is now a personal favorite of mine:

Latex and steel, zeroes and ones make up my son.
This world gave me no child so I built one.

These lyrics are clever, clever, clever. The Megas have an incredible take on Crash Man too, and now for me Crash Man has always wanted to break free of his programming and see Dr. Wily defeated. And he's got a point, too, where he says:

Closer draws the final hour
To break Wily's walls you will need my power.

He's right. Without the Crash Bombs you're not getting past the Wall Boss in Wily-4, but I never considered the possibility that Crash Man could actually want to help Mega Man. It makes the lament at the end of the song, with repeated lines of 'Down falls Crash Man' completely earned. I love that these songs give more depth to the Robot Masters, and in interesting, sometimes unexpected ways. Air Man is an early beneficiary:

Do you know what it's like to be built this way?
With only the power to push others away?

Because he's got a fan in his chest, right? Get it? Get it? At one point he talks about flying high above the city of Monsteropolis, which thoroughly confused Naomi. "Is Air Man going to fight Monster Octopus?" she asked me. When I stopped cracking up, I told her that Launch Octopus wouldn't show up until Mega Man X, and she nodded sagely even though she has no idea what that is. I love that little kid. :D

So it's highly recommended. I'm not sure if the Megas are still recording music, but 'Get Equipped' is phenomenal for any fan of Mega Man 2, and possibly their daughters! After listening to this CD for many, many listens, and deciding it was time for a change of pace, I put in a CD of Sonic the Hedgehog remixes. When I told her what the music was, Naomi piped up from the backseat. 'Does the hedgehog sing?'

Well... sometimes he does. Sometimes he does. But not like Metal Man.


11 comments:

  1. History Repeating Blue is also a fantastic Megas album.

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  2. kudos to this review! that pretty much summed up what i felt when i first heard this album

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    1. btw a post from the Megas in facebook brought me here =))) good blog btw

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  3. Lovely review. You should definetly check out some of their other stuff like Megatainment and history repeating. History repeating is even better than this album

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  4. All of their albums are killer. Definitely check out History Repeating Blue which covers half of MM3 and they also have an acoustic version of Get Equipped with I think is even better than the original.

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  5. I seriously doubt 4-year old could appreciate music of any kind, let alone a cover band. What kind of an idiot parent are you?

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    1. What kind of idiot are you? Unborn babies are known to respond to music in the womb, and I can speak from personal experience that all my children have loved good music from an even younger age than the writer's. Do the world a favor and end yourself

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  6. The Megas are still recording! They released History Repeating: Blue a short while back, and History Repeating: Red should be out soon. Both based on Megaman 3

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  7. I definitely think you should win father of the year! The Megas are a brilliant band, and I'm so glad you're exposing your daughter to such beautiful, creative music. The fact that it started as a result of a bunch of friends' passion for something is also inspirational unto itself, so kudos. :)

    If your daughter does want to hear the hedgehog sing, I'll take a second to plug our band. In a similar vein, The Blast Processors makes lyricised music inspired by classic SEGA games including Sonic the Hedgehog.

    Check us out on Bandcamp (http://blastprocessors.bandcamp.com) Hopefully you'll both enjoy our music.

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    1. We will indeed check you guys out! :D

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  8. Like already said in other comments The Megas are still recording and they released some good new stuff with History Repeating Blue and a great single from the upcomig album Red.
    Also if I might suggest and you haven't heard of them: If you want to check out more Megaman themed bands I wholeheartedly recommend The Protomen. Maybe theme-wise not as fitting for your little daughter but they made 2 incredible albums so far.

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