Reviews

Icy Tower 1.4 – an addictive free adventure game for all

Icy Tower 1.4 is a freeware game that features the main character Harold the Homeboy. Don’t be fooled by Harold’s title, though, because he is anything but a boring homeboy. Rather, Harold the Homeboy is your regular kid who wants to impress his friends. To do this, he jumps to the highest level of the Icy Tower. Unbelievable as it may sound, this game’s simple premise has earned it more than a million of downloads.

Mike Kinsella “Owen” – his first indie free solo album

Owen is a solo project of Mike Kinsella. People in touch with the indie music scene in Chicago can easily recognize who he is. Mike is part of the three Kinsella brothers, all of whom are known for their involvement in many bands in Illinois. Mike himself is a member of the following bands: Cap'n Jazz, Joan of Arc, The One Up Downstairs, American Football, Owls, Maritime, and Aloha.

[TEDTalk] Golan Levin makes art that looks back at you

Golan Levin is an artist and an engineer. Wait, what? Artist and engineer? Isn't it kind of an odd mix? Well, Levin realizes that and revels in the fact. The man has worked as an academic at the prestigious MIT as well as a computer technology and software engineer. Nowadays though, he spends a lot of his time as a performance artist, using his background as an engineer to fuse technology and art in his amazing work. Levin's philosophy is pretty straightforward: art should be a way for us to discover ourselves. One way to go about it is to create art and interact with it using one's body and voice.

Helsingfors’ “Schematics” – a free post-rock/math rock album download from UK

Helsingfors is a five-person instrumental post-rock/math rock band from London, England. The band, which includes all four members of the now-defunct instrumental band From the Sky, is composed of Daniel King, James Morris, Barry Rogers, Alan Ross, and John Spears. The band has released its debut EP entitled "Schematics," which includes four all-new songs. "Schematics" was recorded primarily as a live band, and as such, the EP pulsates with all the energy a live show brings. The album is available now as a free download from the netlabel Lost Children.

PortableApps.com Suite – Your Digital Life, Anywhere

One of the difficulties of traveling, especially if you don't have your laptop with you, is leaving behind your bookmarks and email settings. Security can also be an issue; perhaps the browser you're using on that internet cafe computer has been infected with a virus or a keylogger. Fortunately, there is now a portable alternative that fits into even the tiniest USB flash drive. PortableApps.com provides a completely free, portable, and open source solution for the person on the go: The PortableApps.com Suite.

Abscondo “Midnight Snow” – free acoustic album under Creative Commons License

If you're wondering about what Abscondo got his record name, a quick look at his personal weblog will provide the person. Abscondo came from the verb abscond--to run away, usually taking something or someone along. This is the perfect way to describe his music in his free album, Midnight Snow. This album is arranged in such a way that 5 songs, which fill up Side A, represent Midnight Snow. On the other hand, the next five tracks, composing Side B, make up the Morning Rain.

America Del Sur – a self-titled surfer/rock/punk/jazz album from Florida

America Del Sur (or America of the South) was an indie band with Phil Cardona and Taylor Ross at the helm. Both are high school friends based in Jacksonville, Florida who distributed their music through the net label Rack & Ruin Records. Their style is an eclectic mix of jazz, post punk, indie rock, and teenage surfer twang which gives them a distinctive sound that is - however hard to categorize - quite pleasing to the ear. You'd have to listen to them to understand exactly what I mean.

The Dada Weatherman “EarthQuakes and Failed Mutations” – a blues and country album licensed under Creative Commons

Delicious acoustic and piano ballads characterize The Dada Weatherman’s second offering, “EarthQuakes and Failed Mutations”. The album is an interesting mix of blues, folk, and pop rock with soothing melodies. It’s perfect for easy, laid-back listening on gloomy days when you just don’t want to think about the rest of the world. Influences range from Bob Dylan, Arthur Rimbault, Leonard Cohen, Jimi Hendrix, Robert Johnson, Nick Drake, Django Reinhardt, and newer artists like like Devendra Banhart, Conor Oberst and Elliott Smith.

The Last Man On Earth (1964)

Many of you have probably seen the box office hit I Am Legend (2007) starring Will Smith. If you found the entire premise fascinating - a post-apocalyptic world dominated by vampiric zombies infected with a nasty virus - you should watch its predecessor, The Last Man On Earth starring Vincent Price and directed by Ubaldo Ragona and Sidney Salkow. It was released way back in 1964 and is now considered a classic film in the science fiction/ horror genre, influencing a host of popular films today such as Night of the Living Dead.