Friday, September 21, 2012

Siriusly

We're in full on preseason mode now - which means... content three times a week! Sweet!

So with that in mind, let's talk about something completely inconsequential.

We're all about being pumped up here at WaP. Our weekly pump ups before game weekends are practically legendary at this point, so we consider ourselves semi-experts at the art. For years, beginning circa 2000, the Engineers have been introduced to the sound of The Alan Parsons Project's "Sirius." It's a staple in sports circles, made famous by the still-amazing use of the song in the Chicago Bulls' starting lineup during their dynasty in the 1990s.

They still use it today, and it's still awesome.



RPI has used it for at least the better part of a decade, and... to be honest, we probably couldn't measure up to the original even if we tried, and it's starting to get a tad dated, especially now that we don't hit the lights over the stands anymore before the introductions begin.

Personally speaking, I was always a big fan of the band's "charge" during the introductions, but the realist in me knows that probably isn't coming back. So on the cusp of a brand new season... why not explore other options? We here at the pump up experts are here to help.

The Modern Lone Rider Option
We noticed a couple of years back that when the band was not in the house, the team frequently took the ice to "The Ecstasy of Gold" from The Good, the Bad and the Ugly, written by Ennio Morricone. It's a pretty excellent choice, for sure, famously used by Metallica as they take the stage for a concert.

With that in mind, a couple of seasons back when we suggested a historical montage to play on the new scoreboard, we used Metallica's "S&M" live orchestra intro version, and it worked pretty well. There was indeed a montage that year, and a couple of times we heard that same version on the speakers during pre-game... but the crowd noise from the live recording was a bit distracting.

Here's a different take on "Ecstasy of Gold," though - Jay-Z, on his 2002 album "The Blueprint 2: The Gift & the Curse" sampled the song for the title track, adding a piano, drums and some bass. The instrumental version of this song seems like it would work pretty well, allowing the announcer's voice-over to shine through while projecting the kind of rough-and-ready cowboy overtone with a modern twist. Listen below.




The Trendy But Still Badass Option
Released in 2003 but continuing to grow as a sports anthem, the White Stripes "Seven Nation Army" is becoming more and more ubiquitous for its catchy and easy-to-vocalize riff, not to mention the braggadocio of its second line, which should be appealing to any sports fan ("a seven nation army couldn't hold me back"). Students in college football and basketball can frequently be seen bopping up and down while chanting the main riff, and it has even crossed into college hockey - the BC "Superfans" chant it during a penalty kill whenever the puck is outside the defensive zone.

I first heard the Glitch Mob's dubstep remix of this song in a movie trailer last spring, and it instantly popped into mind as a killer intro track. Again, minus the lyrics for the announcer's clarity, take a listen.




The Embracing Your Inner RPI Nerd Option
Come on now, this has got to at least be a possibility. At a school like RPI, where roughly 120% of the student population has viewed the Star Wars trilogies at least twice this calendar year, why wouldn't a heroic John Williams overture be on the docket?

There are only two real solid options, of course (unless one were to mix things up on Black Friday, for instance, with the Imperial March). The first would be the main title, but that's too easy. Instead, we submit the medley of the Throne Room fanfare from the first movie's final scene, which segues into the end title. Give a listen.
(YouTube won't let us embed this one. Try it out here.)

The Possibly Outdated Already But Inspirational Option
OK, I'm going to admit that I don't really have a strong argument for this choice. But still... there's something about this song that, played ahead of an athletic event, just seems to work. Lupe Fiasco's "The Show Goes On," released in late 2010, is basically a message tune - you're about to see something awesome, regardless of whether the team's coming off a win, loss or tie, the show goes on. It's got the requisite beat you can nod your head to while you cheer, too.

The instrumental alone wouldn't work too well in this case, given the song's required connotations... so here's a solid instrumental version that includes the song's hook.
(Same issue - YouTube won't let this embed. Here it is.)

The Super Modern and Worldly Option
Right, like this wasn't going to be a choice? What's not to love? The kids will love it. Students will mark out for it. Townies will... well, they're not going to get it, but it fits very well with the school's culture for sure.

We probably shouldn't really have to mention this song, especially after mentioning that the version below has no Korean rapping in it - again, for clarity.




So how about it? Any of these choices strike your fancy as an awesome crowdstarter for the new season? Vote below! And if you've got a better idea, we're certainly all ears. Comment below!




4 comments:

  1. I had no idea what "Sirius" was called or who'd done it until now. Thanks.

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  2. Metallica's "For Whom the Bell Tolls" or "Shooting the Moon" by Mona.

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  3. Although I didn't vote Other as I do like one of the choices (and I voted as such), what about something by 2 Unlimited? Obviously the band already plays Twilight Zone, but maybe something like "Get Ready 4 This" or "Tribal Dance"?

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  4. techno crap seemed to work for union last year. go modern or go home.

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