Ah, Nerdapalooza, how I missed you. I didn’t get a chance to go last year because you conflicted with The Amaz!ng Meeting (I wasn’t going to miss Neil deGrasse Tyson and Bill Nye), but in 2012 I came back. And I even managed to get press passes! There were so many great acts during the weekend that it’s going to take me several posts to cover it all (plus one extra for The Day After on Monday). So let’s get started with part one for Saturday.
Unfortunately, I missed Friday due to difficulties with my cat sitter (I won’t bore you with the details). That meant I did miss Geekapella and Tribe One (among others, but those were two I particularly was interested in seeing), but what can you do?
Saturday, however, I arrived bright and early. I’m going to take just a moment at the beginning to express the first of a few minor complaints and get it out of the way. There were two lines to enter, but no one knew for sure which side was for press. I assumed it was probably the “Guest List” side, but it wasn’t clearly labeled. Not that big of a deal, and it turned out to be correct, but it illustrates my complaint: there was not enough communication behind the scenes. As another example, on Sunday, press was allowed in early, then not allowed back in after leaving because different people were at the door. Again, minor complaint, but worth a mention.
The music, however, was great, and the venues worked well (more on that later). Saturday started off slightly late, but the rest of both days were on time consistently. First up was D&D Sluggers, one of the many bands I was really looking forward to seeing. They were a great opening act, immediately energizing the crowd and playing some great music. I particularly enjoyed “Wicked Touch” (with its subtle Pokémon references that I missed until they were pointed out) and “I Will Not Be There.” I had to skip out on R. Garcia to grab lunch (I will mention food and other reasons for missing bands throughout the review, and you might not care. There are, however, two reasons for this: one, in case anyone wonders why I don’t mention certain bands, I want it known it’s not a comment on the band, and, two, it’s worth noting for anyone planning to attend Nerdapalooza in the future that they’re going to have to miss some bands if they want to eat!) because I wanted to make sure to catch Marc with a C. His set was short, only five songs, but well worth catching (you can even view the whole thing, along with many other sets, on The Count3rCu1ture YouTube channel). He even played “Love My Little Squiddy,” one of my favorites. He also performed the first Triforce Mike tribute of the weekend (check this link for a brief summary if you’re not familiar with Triforce Mike). There were many more to come.
Next up was Sci-Fried. They totally rocked the Beacham. I was hoping for a little more collaboration with so many of the artists from Co-Op Mode at Nerdapalooza, but they did perform two songs with Emergency Pizza Party: a cover of “Fight for Your Right to Party” as a tribute to MCA and “Geeks Rule the World” from Co-Op Mode. Dr. Vern told me later that they didn’t do much collaboration because the songs were too new. Fair point, and they did perform several from Future Tense, so I wasn’t too disappointed.
The Thoughtcriminals followed and performed with some guests, including Schäffer the Darklord, Int80 (“All the Coins,” a song I was hoping to hear), Tribe One, and Adam WarRock (the latter three joining for the closer, “Earthbound”). Sulfur’s and kHill’s vocals are so good, and I was pleased that they performed “I Remember Now,” one of my favorite tracks from Cold Winter. Unfortunately, I missed Dual Core’s set because I needed to run to the hotel to get checked in finally (and they still didn’t have my room ready, even though they said they’d have it by that time! Boo! But at least I did get a room — the hotel was sold out!). I’m hoping that their set shows up on YouTube at some point, but ah, well, you can’t always see everything.
Stay tuned for Part Two of Saturday coming soon!