Wednesday, March 20, 2024

This Sonic The Hedgehog AI Music Album Exists And We're All Very Confused




2024 sure has been a year. It's only March and now we have some crazy Sonic the Hedgehog AI Music album from Australian Comedy Rock musician Cameron Hons. Cameron has done a few real Sonic the Hedgehog tribute / remix albums in the past, but this time he's been experimenting with AI. "Someone showed me this AI Music App where you can tell it to do songs and they auto generate for you. I tried it out and had a lot of fun with it. Using this software was a breeze and I started coming up with a bunch of meme songs. Then I thought why not do an album about Sonic The Hedgehog themed tracks?" That's when this album, Speed Of The Abyss - Music Inspired By Sonic comes from.

In the modern age, AI gets a bad reputation. A lot of people including media companies these days commonly talking bad about it and trying to incite fear around AI. However, Cameron thinks not all AI is bad. "If you're using some picture, music or video AI software just for fun or whatever to post memes and stuff on the internet, that's OK to me." Even the cover art for the album was generated by AI Art.

Despite this being a total AI Music album, there are some absolute bangers on here surprisingly. From the epic title track "Speed Of The Abyss" , which sounds exactly like a properly themed Sonic song, though it talks about how most of the modern Sonic games aren't as good as the new ones ["Running fast but going nowhere / Lost in a maze, trapped in despair"] the lyrics cleverly represent the struggles of Modern Sonic and how Sega keep losing track of their audience with their odd business decisions. 

"Speed Of Freedom" is a juicy rock song about how Sonic doesn't need any of his friends anymore. A lot of Sonic's friends in the game are certainly lame. Our favourite seems to be "No More Green Hill" which really didn't deserve to hit that hard. Sega have been repeatedly using Green Hill Zone in their games for the past decade and fans are getting bored. "Speed Of Regret" asks the question of why Sonic The Hedgehog 2006 had to happen.Whereas Digital Dilemma is about Cameron's personal experiences on his former working site, Shadow Of A Hedgehog. He quit there earlier in the year after being mistreated by staff and decided to make a song about it to share the experiences. While "Dr. Eggman With The Master Plan" pretty much sounds the obvious. "Running Solo" is quite a catchy pop ballad about how Sonic doesn't need Amy Rose anymore. "Elitist Forum Fiasco" talks about the toxic environments of the Sonic the Hedgehog Online Community, which mentions the poor behavior of websites such as Tails Channel, Sonic Retro, Sonic Fan Games HQ and Shadow Of A Hedgehog. The Sonic fan sites don't need to be competitive and hate each other but they do and that is unfortunate. "Out With The Old" brings up the always commonly discussed topic about Sega's unusual obsession with Classic Sonic in a modern environment. "Underestimated" is about how Cameron really felt about 2022's Sonic Frontiers, which promised much but left many people disappointed and empty handed in a nearly complete but unfinished and bland game full of reused assets and experiences. 

Meanwhile, "The Sound Of Progress" discusses the fact that this album is generally better than anything Sega have put out this past decade. The song basically writes itself. "The Call Of Absurdity" is another song about Cameron's old writing ground, Shadow of a Hedgehog, where he used to get constantly bothered by the Staff on that website if he disagreed with something or got in a bad situation. Cameron was treated with a lot of disrespect on his old writing ground. Thankfully, it's better on Emerald Rangers where he writes now. 

"Lost In The Mess" brings back the discussion of the toxic environment of the Sonic Online Community. Basically, the Sonic Online Community is famously known for being a toxic wasteland. But Cameron doesn't want to have those kind of annoying fans representing him as a person. He just wants to enjoy the Sonic games for what they are.

"The Big Sonic Revolutionary Conspiracy" is an epic rock number which goes on for about almost 7 minutes, discusses the "Big Sonic Conspiracy" where the 4 main big Sonic websites, Sonic Retro, Tails Channel, Sonic Fan Games HQ and Sonic Stadium know people who work at Sega behind the scenes so they get the news first when they report it to them and get angry and intimidate others who cover it first. 

"Return To Greatness" is an epic pop rock number about the hopes of bringing back Sonic Mania developer Christian Whitehead after 2023's Sonic Superstars performed poorly (gee who didn't see that coming?) and finally, the album ends in 2 bonus tracks - "Speed Of Light" an epic punk rock anthem about how Sega's crunch time often match the quality of the finished product, and "Shadows Falling" an epic new-wave pop track about how Sega have always been sidelining Shadow The Hedgehog in the games.

Cameron explains how he actually made the album, "All I did was give the AI something to write about which reflects my own personal thoughts on how Sonic is now, and it did the rest. It did the music, vocals and everything. I did generate full lyrics on Chat GPT about every subject. It was a lot of fun to see what that would come up with." 

Asks if he's not bothered about AI? Cameron says "AI will never replace me as a musician. I just did this album for fun, and meme related purposes. It was certainly a different experience." 

And if people don't like it? "Well, they'd hate the AI stuff and not me hopefully" laughs Cameron.

Speed Of The Abyss - Music Inspired By Sonic is now available on Cameron's Bandcamp page.



01. Speed Of The Abyss
02. Speed Of Freedom
03. No More Green Hill
04. Speed Of Regret
05. Digital Dilemma
06. Dr. Eggman With The Master Plan
07. Running Solo
08. Elitist Forum Fiasco
09. Out With The Old
10. Underestimated
11. The Sound Of Progress
12. The Call Of Absurdity
13. Lost In The Mess
14. The Big Sonic Revolutionary Conspiracy
15. Return To Greatness
16. Speed Of Light (Bonus Track)
17. Shadows Falling (Bonus Track)

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