Chris and music
Chris is a big fan of music; he listens to tracks from many genres and decades, though mostly pop and rock. At first glance, his eclectic taste in music is not too unconventional. It's the ways he's presented his taste over the years that are pretty unconventional – most people understand that a Guitar Hero controller is not a real instrument, but Chris isn't most people.
Chris is also infamous for overestimating his singing ability and music recording methods, despite having trouble remembering the lyrics, melodies, the pitch, and even the instruments used in his favorite songs. Nevertheless, Chris has dabbled in music production, with over sixty covers, parodies, and "original" songs. He loves music so much, he is turned on by the very concept of it.
Chris has often remarked that he likes "all popular music". While it's possible that he's just giving that answer to appear cool and easygoing, he really does seem to try to listen to whatever popular opinion tells him is good. Almost every song on either of his 3 horrible albums was a top 40 hit in America or another country, or otherwise either a deep cut on a successful album, a B-side on a successful single or EP, or songs featured on the soundtracks to either hit movies such as Pokémon: The First Movie, or video games such as Guitar Hero and Rock Band.
It is worth noting that parts of Chris's taste in music are fairly standard, as his favored genres of rock and pop are mainstream. Chris's interest in multiple genres spanning decades is shared by most people who like music. It's also common for people to develop an interest in songs from media including video games, movies, television, as well as what their parents listen to. Bob's expansive collection of thousands of records from around the world could have influenced Chris in some way, even if was simply a love of music.
Chris has stated his favorite radio station is Z95.1 WQMZ from Charlottesville, which plays nothing but inoffensive popular songs (specifically from the 1980s to today) that you're likely to hear in the dentist's office. The station bills its offerings as "today's hits and yesterday's favorites, music for women". Chris listens to the John Tesh radio show on this station, and once won a set of tickets to a sporting event through a call-in contest. He has left his radio on before during his videos as well as a few of his Mumble chats, for the whole conversation. This meant that he both enjoyed the background music and was totally inconsiderate to the other people in the chat.
The only specific artist Chris seems to truly idolize is Britney Spears. There is virtually no doubt that this is more because of her beauty than her music, or for memories of happier times. On his date with Emily, he claimed to like Louis Armstrong in an effort to look like a sophisticated jazz listener.
If his past downloads on Rhapsody (seen below) is any indication, almost everything Chris listens to has been in a Guitar Hero, Rock Band, or Sonic game. This adds yet more weight to the theory that Chris is spoon-fed pop culture from video games and Family Guy.
Also, keeping with the theme of liking things that most kids are unaware of or would not enjoy, Chris has twice referenced Billy Joel's upbeat 1985 track "You're Only Human (Second Wind)", a dated but memorable reggae-pop song written specifically to stop teenagers from killing themselves. To date, Chris has referenced the song in a YouTube video where he says that relieving yourself from stress isn't a big deal, and again when asked by a fan whether he'd ever had thoughts of suicide. Chris replied, with utterly no elaboration at all, that he had "a lot to live for" and told said fan to go listen to the song.
Chris has also expressed a fondness for Insane Clown Posse, releasing two videos in which he paints his face and talks about being a Juggalo. Since fans of ICP tend to be stereotyped as idiotic, out-of-shape, white-trash jerkasses who believe themselves to be outcasts of society, it is easy to understand why becoming a Juggalo would appeal to Chris.
|“||I like men as I like Heavy Metal "Music"; I Do Not Like Heavy Metal Music; hardly a real beat or tune, and the lyrics are incoherent.||”|
|Chris' incoherent words about the incoherency of heavy metal.|
In a Patreon post made on 4 August 2017, Chris reveals that he has a distaste for heavy metal music. To him, all hard rock music has little to no real beats or music, and he finds the lyrics hard to follow.
YouTube background music
Towards the fall of 2009, Chris began to include popular songs as background music in a number of his YouTube videos. Some videos, such as SHE IS MINE NOW, featured Aerosmith in the background, possibly in a sad attempt to appear intimidating and hardcore. For videos showing off his athletic prowess, Chris favored "Eye of the Tiger" by Survivor. In light of Chris's virulent hatred of homos, this is a somewhat ironic choice, given the extraordinarily homoerotic overtones of both the training sequences in Rocky III and Survivor's own music video for the song. For videos intended to express his heartfelt love for Kacey, Chris employed REO Speedwagon's power ballad "Can't Fight This Feeling". The third time he announced his leaving from the internet, he chose, of all songs, Colbie Caillat's "Fallin' for You" as background music--although this most likely was just him leaving the radio on in the background.
In his videos made in 2014, Chris took to playing sappy 1950s orchestral music in the background. This appears to be an attempt to garner sympathy given his recent difficulties in life, or it could just be yet another acquired taste from his parents.
Many videos filmed during the Financhu Crisis feature default background music from the PS4 game The Playroom. The common theme is a slow looping electronic piece with beeping square-wave synths and synth pads. YouTube commenters have branded this tune the "Financhu Crisis Theme".
Most of Chris's songwriting output has been him singing his original lyrics over copyrighted songs. He doesn't consider his songs to be parodies, but rather serious compositions that happen to share tunes with popular songs. Writing a good parody also requires a good grasp on lyricism, which Chris doesn't really seem to have. If anything, Chris's music is plunderphonics, a controversial genre built around sampling and altering existing recordings.
Chris's lyrics tend to be autobiographical. His 2003 album showed insight into Chris's loneliness and thought processes. He also included several Sonichu anthems on the album, and he attempted Spanish music with "La Cocina en La Casa de Casanova", not knowing that Casanova was Italian. The album was fairly eclectic in lyrical topics and musical feel, though most of the tunes were either pop songs taken from the late 1990s or were songs used in Sonic the Hedgehog media. Chris's second album took songs from even more genres, and included a lot of 1970s and 1980s music. However, his lyrical focus got narrower, and he wrote nearly all the songs about Ivy. His third and most recent attempt an an album follows a similar pattern to his second, taking songs from the 1980s and 1990s of various genres including pop rock, country, punk, and Hi-NRG. Notably, Chris does not make any major changes to the lyrical content of these songs, only changing words that could imply he was gay.
Chris's lyrics don't always fit the mood or context of the song. A good songwriter uses lyrics that reflect the music and paint an emotional picture. If they do use lyrical dissonance, it's intentional or for ironic effect. Chris, however, seems to not care either way. Consider his second-biggest hit, "A-U-T-I-S-M". The original song, "Larger than Life", has an upbeat vibe. Chris, however, rewrote the song with self-pitying downer lyrics about being a lonely outcast with few friends, all while the exuberant backing track plays. The closest thing the song has to a positive twist is him bragging about his supposed intelligence.
Chris also doesn't appear to grasp the concept of a hook. The hook is usually the part of the song that people remember the most; it's generally short, catchy, and heavy, almost like an advertising jingle for the song itself. Chris doesn't seem to understand this. The hook of "So Need a Cute Girl" is "I have a boyfriend!". Those who don't pay much attention to lyrics will hear that part stand out the most, making it sound like Chris is singing about him having a boyfriend.
Chris's rhymes are elementary and sometimes forced. In "All I Want For Christmas Is a Pretty Girlfriend", he rhymes "eighteen to twenty-two" with "boyfriend free too" before plugging Match.com. In "Saddest Heart in the World", he says "Heart-broken, sad and very lonely,/I may never remove my virginity." In addition to rhyming "lonely" with "virginity," he opts to say "remove" when "lose" would have worked much better and sounded less robotic.
Chris's attempts at figurative language fall flat. In Yellow Is a Mellow Color, he pens the truism "Traveling without a map/Is like traveling with no map." In A-U-T-I-S-M, he sings "I'm lookin' at you all, and I see a rainbow, come on!" It's not clear what he means by this: Rainbows are usually used as a symbol of homosexuality, but he could be using it as a workaround metaphor for the autism spectrum. There are very few metaphors in Chris's music that aren't either nonsense or clichés, and much of it is quite rigid and literal.
"Feel Our Love At Play" is a case study for all of the above. In this song, Chris transforms a classic 1980s love song into an overly literal monstrosity (in both senses of the word literal). Chris replaces the iconic hook, "Take My Breath Away," with a hook that would probably work better as a verse. "Feel Our Love At Play" is just too literal. Chris also takes out any verse he interprets as negative, replacing them with verses that would have never sent Berlin's original to the top of the charts. He replaces "Waiting, still anticipating love" with "Feeling our mutual feels," which sounds especially out of place with the 80s vibes. He wasn't even trying to parody Berlin or change the meaning significantly – all he did was change enough words to call it his own. In other words, he should have just made Ivy a mixtape.
Chris has written a few truly original songs, but the results are riddled with a healthy dose of random-access humor. His best example, I Got A Fish, stands out with its catchy-but-meaningless symbolism. His more recent song, It's snowing, shifts its tone from soft to aggressive as he sings "Snowing, snowing, snowing is falling and we're inside at home, with eggs, for breakfast TO MAKE OMELETS WITH!" His original melodies are quite sing-songy and straddle the boundaries between singing and talking. Which brings us to...
|“||...and when singing I can have a Frank Sinatra or Bing Crosby flavor.||”|
|Chris, being sadly mistaken.|
It is impossible to overstate how much of a terrible singer Chris is. It is similarly impossible to overstate how deluded Chris is about his ability to sing. He's so deluded, in fact, when trying to confront Liquid via artistic competition, he lost a challenge that he nominated himself.
Despite claiming to have a "deep bass voice", Chris's voice is unusually high-pitched, and often louder than appropriate. He also tends to speak in an odd, emotionless monotone. These issues with his voice become even more obvious when he tries to sing. In both his Christian and the Hedgehog Boys albums, as well as the only album from Robee Sonee and the Tomgirls, he doesn't actually "sing" so much as desperately yell over the track in an attempt to drown out the actual words of the song (as he never bothers to look up karaoke/instrumental-only versions of anything he sings). This is painfully obvious when he attempts to sing "Sonichu Zip", a song that uses the Japanese theme song to the anime Sonic X, "Sonic Drive". The fast tempo and lyrics of "Sonic Drive" result in Chris rapidly dissolving into screaming gibberish. When he does try to actually vary his voice away from the standard monotone, it becomes very obvious that Chris is almost completely tone-deaf; his voice fluctuates in pitch with little to no regard to the background music, or even the original artist he's shouting over. Occasionally he's barely managed to carry a tune, though. If Chris could sing at all, his voice type would be at best a spieltenor (used for comical roles) pushing towards countertenor, a pitch range octaves above the bass range he claims to have, and a tessitura (note range) too high for many women.
Chris also has a lot of trouble with tempo and entries. While the songs he's written usually manage to match the originals in terms of lyrical rhythms, Chris often pushes ahead or pulls back from the tempo of the song. This is sometimes done deliberately by singers and is called rubato, but in Chris's case it is generally the result of messing up lyrics or having too many or few words for the rhythm (usually the former), and Chris's tenuous sense of pulse means that once he gets thrown offbeat he struggles (usually in vain) to recover. This could probably be avoided if he took the time to practice or revise, but since this entails work it is flatly out of the question. Also owing to this nonexistent practice ethic is Chris being completely terrible at remembering the actual words to the song he's singing. The only part he tends to know is the chorus of the song, likely because the repetition makes it the only part of the song he pays attention to. Between choruses, however, he often forgets the words and improvises lyrics, which invariably consist of mumbled incoherent nonsense.
A cappella is a musical technique that entails using nothing but the human voice (and sometimes the body) to produce music. In the Official Videobooks, Chris will occasionally break out into a cappella renditions of what one can only assume is supposed to be Sonichu's theme music. These bizarre freestyle musical interludes drive home exactly how childish Chris is. There's something uniquely terrifying about a man in his mid-30s (who looks like he's 45) showing us his Sonic/Pokémon crossover and shouting "dun dun dun". Chris also occasionally does this in his normal videos. He also performed a poor rendition of "The Final Countdown" by Europe while showing us that he can still pick up a chair, and an equally-as-awful version of Q Lazzarus's "Goodbye Horses" while pretending to dig up his dead dog and wear it as a coat. And let's not forget "Lovin' You", where he attempts to do a cappella, but thanks to a sheer lack of practice, simply ends up massacring a Minnie Riperton classic by singing it completely out of tune (and tempo).
Despite his frequent use of a cappella, Chris clearly doesn't understand the full meaning of the word. During the PaRappa the Rapper Contest, a frequent source of rage from Chris was the "music" in the background of Adam Stackhouse's video, which Chris vehemently claimed was a violation of the rules regarding backing tracks. However, since the music was simple beatboxing, it would be considered a cappella by most.
With the popularity of artists like Eminem, Macklemore, Post Malone, and Jedi Mind Tricks, plus the odd continued existence of nerdcore, white guys rapping on YouTube is not unheard of. Some of these individuals demonstrate impressive talent in their ability to flow on a beat. Chris is not among them.
Of course, his most notable foray into rap is his entry for the PaRappa contest. While his motivations and the drama it caused are covered extensively in that article, the video itself is characterized by a complete lack of rhythm or flow. The result can best be described as sounding like a drunk Muppet being startled every 30 seconds; Chris slurring his words together constantly and periodically yelling lyrics for no reason.
Before he starts the song in earnest, Chris does a little bit of freestyling in the beginning. Needless to say, it's not promising:
|“||I have a PSP and she don't
So give me the PSP,
Unwrap the wrapper
So I can give one to her,
And then we can play together!
|Chris, almost rhyming.|
This, however, was nothing compared to a later foray into the genre. Playing Aerosmith in the background instead of any sort of backbeat, Chris basically just shouts a lot of random short sentences with no regard as to how they flow, or if they even rhyme at all.
|“||You just a dang dummy!
And you still chicken, you's a dang coward!
You wanna come fight me?
Come fight me in person
Come out from behind the camera, you fool!
In December 2009, Chris would rap once again to Insane Clown Posse's side-project Dark Lotus. As usual, he made no attempt to learn the lyrics and appears to be reading them off a piece of paper to unconvincing effect. During a portion of the video, he simply mumbles to himself, rocking back and forth and fondling his ample breasts not once, but twice. He also refers to himself as a Juffalo, a term apparently used by Insane Clown Posse aficionados to describe the noncommittal poseurs who aren't good enough to fully appreciate the world of clown-related glam rap.
Two days prior to this he made another awful freestyle rap. The point of this is unclear, although he apparently visited a doctor, who suggested that he take over-the-counter vitamins. He likens the effects of these vitamins to Viagra, and then compares himself to a tiger raping a panther to produce tiger-panther cubs.
|“||I would play my ax on the Wii; getting the high scores, scored better, real play for my benefit.||”|
|Blanca, acting as a proxy for Chris to espouse his flawed beliefs on music|
Chris seems to have a very tenuous grasp on what constitutes a musical instrument. Notably, in several videos, Chris tends to treat his Guitar Hero controller like it's a real instrument. This seems outright foolish, even for Chris, until you consider his mindset. All of Chris's "creations" are copies of other things, yet are still somehow completely original. So by "playing" someone else's song on Guitar Hero, his autistic mindset dictates that he is actually playing the song, no matter if the song is a cover of the original, which necessitates a legitimate instrument on which to play it.
As further proof of his madness, Chris equated Liquid's actual musical skill to him playing Guitar Hero, to such a degree that he felt it necessary to outlaw both in the SingStar Challenge.
|“||I got the idea of the challenge from him COPYING me playing Boston's "More Than A Feeling" on Guitar Hero on his old Wooden Nickel; if he wants to copy on Guitar, he may as well be challenged in a Sing-Off.||”|
|Chris, blowing the minds of guitarists of all talent levels|
|“||-NO MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS, real or Guitar Hero/Rock Band/Rock Revolution, etc is to be visible in ANY VIDEO.||”|
|Chris, inspiring the hatred of people who like music everywhere|
Chris has attempted actual guitar playing after Kim Wilson suggested it, but he didn't stick with it. He demoed a guitar at Best Buy, strumming randomly on the strings. Chris believed his random open-string strumming sounded good. He mentioned to Kacey he was planning on saving up to buy the genuine axe, and that he was going to start taking lessons. He never ended up buying it, presumably put off by the stress of practice. 
Chris and tone-deafness
It is telling that not only does Chris lack any sense of pitch in singing, but with melodies in general. This is evidenced in the Wedding Anniversary Special, where he claims to be playing the original theme to Sonic the Hedgehog but ends up with some wildly unrecognizable tune that only vaguely resembles the Sonic theme rhythmically. This proves beyond a shadow of a doubt that Chris is actually tone-deaf, instead of simply lacking in vocal skills.
Some think it's a symptom of autism, as subtleties in tone and intonation indicating emotional and social cues are beyond his grasp, which in turn would affect recognition of pitch changes in music. However, something isn't right; in fact, autistic people are more likely to have perfect pitch than non-autistics, an ability shared with Mozart, Michael Jackson, Mariah Carey, Charlie Puth and others. So if plenty of fellow autistics have this otherwise rare musical gift, why did Chris end up with the opposite?
Recording method and equipment
Chris's idea of accompaniment is putting the original song playing on the background using his PS3 and the near-$1,000 Sony LCD HDTV and the most expensive speakers his tugboat could tug in, while he sings with his unique voice. The singing, of course, is dutifully recorded with the long-suffering PSEye camera. The implications are staggering:
- There's always a huge quality loss when music is played on speaker and then re-recorded from a distance because the acoustics of the room distorts the sound and the air itself blocks low and high frequencies, leaving you with only a distorted fraction of the original sound. Chris, of course, believes that everything he does is perfect on the first try and never has to be redone, just like his art.
- The original lyrics are still on the song. At least on one occasion, Chris even screwed up harder than this, and got a cover of "Never Gonna Give You Up" from Family Guy, clobbered by dialogue and other sounds. While lyrics often can't always be removed from a mixed song entirely, it's at least worth a shot trying lyrics removal software. Or, it might pay to look for an instrumental version/cover, or the song's stem files.
- When you have one go and one microphone to record everything, there's no way to correct the errors if you flub anything. The result is obviously perfect...d'oh, who are we kidding?
Chris is, of course, unaware of the incredible leaps and bounds that music recording has advanced in recent years, and hasn't noticed that there are plenty of good multitrack sound editors available for free, many of which come with lyrics removal plugins.
Chris also demands this sort of weird screwy setup from others; one might assume, for example, that the Brown-Striped One, with actual musical talent, would have more technical know-how on how to record music properly, but the SingStar Challenge was done on Chris's strange terms.
On 2 February 2015, Chris revealed that he drew the artwork to the album Negative by L'eclipse Nue. L'eclipse Nue is an obscure harsh noise act, whose music largely consists of ear-piercing screeches and low rumbling sounds – quite inaccessible for our Britney Spears-loving hero. Chris gave a brief review of the album, claiming that it reminded him of "Pinkie Pie playing a theramin [sic]", and stating that he could "sense the emotions and depressions expressed behind the music". Chris has almost certainly not listened to the album.
The cover booklet in the special-edition physical release of the album reveals that the entire album was focused around the cruddy picture Chris had drawn for them, along with a description of the piece.
|"I have seen into the torment of the deceased woman;|
she may have had a life's career if posing nude for art,
Dan states in the booklet that:
|"The sounds herein were created in order to illustrate that story.|
This album is a soundtrack to Christian's art."
Therein this whole album, and every sound in it, is inspired entirely by Chris's art.
In February 2018, Chris was approached by "international boy-band sensation", Boi Spicy, to do a feature for their album The Never-Ending Journey To Boi-Town, USA. Instead of doing something original like they requested, he decided to use his trademark laziness and make them record "Love is Love". To further stoke his ego, he drew a cover for Love is Love, intending it to be released as a single.
On 19 July 2019, the release of Trap Top Neon Vol. 1 by Easy-K Beats marks the third time Chris became the artist of an album cover. Chris simply redrew the cover art from the Internet Dream Lounge, of which Easy-K Beats was the co-host, drawing himself into the scene in a show of his ego.
21 August 2019 saw the fourth time Chris of being commissioned for an album cover for the release of Cone Attacks! by MC Cone. However, being the lazy autist that he is, the cover art and in turn, the album was delayed until 5 September 2019 after many complaints from the commissioner.
In addition, many of Chris's fans request him to sing in Paid Video Requests.
Chris doesn't just love music, he's even turned on by the very concept of it. In February 2017, although he's made passing mentions of it before, Chris stated on Facebook he gets aroused when listening to music--any music, not just certain songs. This includes music featured on Sailor Moon. As always, make of that what you will.
Finally, being aroused by music is not unique to Chris: otherwise, love songs such as "Tonight, I Celebrate My Love" or "Always" would have not done well in the charts, and pop singers like Madonna wouldn't insert sexual innuendos into their hits. That said, most people aren't turned on by the very concept of music as a whole.
It is possible that Chris, given his confusion regarding sex as a whole, may be conflating this arousal with the phenomenon of frisson, a pleasant feeling that listeners experience when listening to music, often observed when listening to certain styles of music, or features of a given piece - this sensation is variously described as 'tingling' or 'chills'.
|SONICHU The Album ! New From CWC-Tel|
|Direct link||Youtube, archive|
|Stardate||1 January 2019|
|TRUE and HONEST Sonichu Fan Videos|
- Z95.1 homepage
- Kacey Call 14
- Captain's Log, Stardate September 24th, 2008
- February 2017 Facebook Posts#Aroused by Sailor Moon music
- A list of Chris's MyCokeRewards Rhapsody purchases (Note that those within "indexGREGGbought.html" were, obviously, purchased by trolls who had hijacked the account.)