Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Midweek Music Box: Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 2 and Punk Rock Memories

Yeah, let's see you do in your late 30's what Tony Hawk does now in his 40's?
Silence? That's what I thought.
*Language Warning on the Music ahead.  But what do expect? It's a soundtrack with Bad Religion and Rage Against the Machine!

For others, the game must also have acted as their gateway to punk rock, metal, and pop rock.  How else can you explain the fact that I typed "Tony Hawk" into Google's search bar and it auto-filled to Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 2?  

Okay, before I go any further, I know this might seem like a bit of a cheat to use this game for Midweek Music Box, but this game would have been so much less of the game it is were it not for the kick-butt soundtrack.  It really helps sell the feeling of skating around, grinding on rails, doing manuals in ridiculous places, or doing absurdly high kickflips that would be bone-breaking if landed wrong to name just a few things.  It sells it not just because it gets your blood pumping as you try to make the most points or try to complete the most goals you can in 2 minutes, but for me at least, it sells it because it captures the time I was skateboarding in real life.    I think I'd probably still be on the board now if I was in better shape and hadn't tweaked a nerve in my leg skateboarding years ago.

But I digress.

Anywho.  When I was skating around, I hadn't really gotten into listening to punk rock or heavy metal while doing so.  I was still mainly listening to Beach Boys and Beatles and various movie soundtracks (I still enjoy both bands BTW) if I listened to anything.  Then I started playing this game.  Whoa, just freaking whoa....

The real trick is not getting caught.

Not only did it bring back memories of hopping the fence of local grade school to do tricks off their stuff  (um, not that I would EVER have done something like that.  Nope!  Just clean-cut living for me...) but it helped me to realize why people were bringing boom boxes to skate parks (or places that were used as skateparks).  I know for some people it's one band or one song that got them into a genre of music.  Maybe they heard something from Mozart and realized how fantastic classical music can be.  Or maybe they heard the soundtrack from Jurassic Park and recognized just how awesome a well composed soundtrack can be.  For me, I credit Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 2 with getting me into punk rock and metal music.  True, something else might have eventually come along and gotten me into those genres, but I guess this is why I'm a gamer.  It takes a video game to do it before I start to learn to love it.

Thanks to the cycling nature of the soundtrack, there's no one particular soundtrack that I attribute with any particular area.  Nor do I automatically hear something on my iPod and recognize it as something from Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 2.  Well, I might kinda remember "Guerilla Radio" as the music that played over the game intro.  That said, here's a link to the complete soundtrack.  As I mentioned before, this is ever-so-much NSFW in many, many spots, so listen at your own discretion.  As for me.  I kinda wish I had my old board and a set of Vans right about now.



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