Everyone’s a geek these days, I’m not alone in my geeky ways
There’s no need for us to wait, the future’s here, let’s celebrate
Everyone’s a geek is the third song on our debut album, Beneath your city; as you dream… The video premiered on ForTheRabbits on 3 February 2017.
When I (Robin) was at school, video games, computers and electronic gadgets were mainly the preserve of the geeks – I wore the badge with pride! It’s all quite different now. Technology is everywhere and the internet powers just about everything. If you don’t own a smartphone then some people find it quite peculiar. Everyone is a geek!
Everyone’s a geek sounds like no other song on our album, thanks to the main instrumental melody being a synthesized retro video game sound as well as the usual vocals and acoustic guitar (there is no bass guitar on this one.)
The video game sound is from an 8bit plug in, played on a keyboard. We sampled the main video game sound back onto the keyboard, so the sound can be played at different pitches, along with full samples of a couple of the more fiddly bits like the intro, rising scale and various other bleeps. Nik switches between samples on the fly.
If we’re playing unplugged then Nik attempts to replicate all this on a stylophone, which she doesn’t enjoy!
This video has been in the works for about a year, not because it is particularly complicated but because finding the time to get together for things like this is tricky.
It was great fun to make, basically open license on indulging in a passion of retro gaming and nostalgic hardware.
The pixellated shots are processed by a late 80s/early 90s 16-bit computer, an Atari ST. They were originally recorded on a video camera, which was then digitised by Videomaster cartridge/software on the Atari and the output of this was recorded from the computer’s screen back on to a smartphone in order to get the footage into an editable, digital format.
The flashing ‘Everyone’s a geek’ screen was coded on a Spectrum computer in Sinclair BASIC and then digitised using a smartphone recording the computer screen.
We used a Gameboy with a camera cartridge – possibly one of the first widely-available digfital cameras? – for the Gameboy shots.
Sheffield electronic components shop Bardwells gets a mention in the song. I used to go there with my dad to buy components to do small electronic projects. Thankfully it’s still going strong and I still use it now to occasionally make leads for old hardware.
The day we were filming had the heaviest rain and flooding for months. And of course it happenned to be a Monday which as someone pointed out, any self-discerning geek should know is when Bardwells is shut!
The shots in the acade were recorded at a dreary cinema/bowling./food/leisure plance in Sheffield called Centertainment. It would have been MUCH nicer to have go to an old skool arcade at the seaside but Sheffield being one of the most central places in the UK doesn’t help.
Here’s a list of the some of the retro items that appear in the finished video:
- Casio RAP-1 keyboard
- Yamaha DD-12 drum machine
- ZX Spectrum +3
- Atari Lynx (modded with replacement LCD colour screen)
- Nintendo Gameboy with camera (modded with bivert and replacement LED backlit screen)
- Powerplay Cruiser joysticks
- Your Sinclair magazine
- Atari STE
- Calculator watch (not an original 1980s Casio I’m afraid; a £3 eBay purchase!)
- Atari classic tv games joystick
- Raspberry PI
- Lemmings 7″ single
- Lights Alive
- countless computer and video games!
Please let us know what you think of our video!