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Stuckhome Syndrome Part One V1: Years In the Past - Commentary

3.2k words across 28 entries.

Album commentary

Robert J! Lake:

Stuckhome Syndrome Part One, Volume One is a collection of every song I ever did for Homestuck that never got used, and it's a collection of every song I ever did for Homestuck - be they finished or even just light throwaway sketches - that never got used.

This will release more like a video game, with free DLC updates throughout the next few months. I'll update the album with a changelog and announce each swath of updates. Make sure you get a Bandcamp fan account when you buy if you don't have one already; that will let you download the album multiple times so you can keep updating to the current version. Aside from more polish, better mixing, and better versions of bonus tracks, you can expect expanded liner notes, track art, and more over the next few months - all included with the one time price.

If you don't wanna deal with all of this weird video game release methodology garbage, that's fine too! I'll be releasing this as a set of multiple split albums of more manageable size as I finish up each individual release, with the first in the near future, for if you just have a bunch of albums instead of one huge mutant thing! You'll be able to buy a pass for all of the albums for the same price as this album, so you won't be missing out. Make sure you're following me on twitter at for updates on that!

Thank you so much for supporting me!

Here’s the breakdown:

APRIL THIRTEEN: Stuckhome Syndrome Part 1 V1: Years in the Past

The first and biggest (by volume, not effort) of the four albums is a collection of every unreleased Homestuck track I’ve ever made (with one important exception) polished up as much as I possibly can. It’s going to be released as a 43 track album with hundreds of bonus tracks included once you buy it, partially because putting 413+ songs on a single bandcamp page is a ridiculous, tiring amount of scrolling and I don’t want to put you through that.

Will have liner notes and all that for every song if I can hack it, plus track art (possibly yours! scroll down for more info)

JUNE TWELVE: Stuckhome Syndrome Part 1 V2: Gaiden (Reloaded)

Title in progress, I think, because that’s dumb, but this is all the songs I did for Homestuck Gaiden, plus from-the-ground-up remakes of all of them. I’m toying with getting other artists from the Gaiden page on there as well. So! Hopefully this will be a good compromise, given that the Gaiden page as it stands is basically a dead horse, which is something I’m pretty sure I can’t talk about further! So I won’t, uh, touch on that. (I’m sure someone has the files if you hunt around, but it won’t be me.)

AUGUST EIGHT: Stuckhome Syndrome Part 1 V3: Coolkid’s on the Block

My solo Dave album, originally planned for a What Pumpkin release years ago, finally hits your ears. Only about four years late. Plus all bonuses planned.

OCTOBER TWENTY-FIFTH: Stuckhome Syndrome Part 2: From Before the Beginning to After the End, PLUS A BIG HUGE SURPRISE

All those songs I did for Homestuck you heard already? Picture them completely reimagined. Each one gets a total rethink from the ground up, keeping the soul of the original in a fancy new 2016 body.

That same day, something insane is getting launched, and I think it will blow your collective brains, but nicely. I’ll tease it more closer to the date.

[Wiki note: As of this writing, no other Stuckhome albums have been released.]

Hivebent Anthem

Robert J! Lake:

Today’s Stuckhome Syndrome P1V1 album preview is for Hivebent Anthem, my flagship track for Alterniabound (one of a few; the rest were really, really silly (including one that’s a really honky and weird Gamzee track)) that unfortunately didn’t get on the album; I was trying to do a troll session variant on the Homestuck Anthem, basically; it’s a little sadder and weirder, as befits the, you know, grey candy corn alien people it’s about. Here’s the first minute and change of it!

Sburban Echo

Robert J! Lake:

Here’s something you haven’t heard yet! This is Sburban Echo, a Lord English track formerly from The Felt, then reworked for Volume 9 to be more akin to, like, yo, what if Sburban Jungle was written for the Dead Session? but unfinished, then here now it’s not unfinished anymore, it’s done and fancy for an album I’m releasing on 4/13 for $13.43 that you can pre-order now for $9.87.

Entangled With the Void

Robert J! Lake:

This is the first minute of a Caliborn/Lord English track that emphasizes the petulant brat’s predilection for false signifiers of maturity in the form of loud dumb guitars and “epic” “melodies.” It’s the most Tensei thing I ever made. Maybe you’ll like it!

Listen to the Lovely Weather

Robert J! Lake:

It’s a new day, and that new day contains a new song preview for Stuckhome Syndrome P1V1; this is the first minute and a half of Listen to the Lovely Weather, one of the tracks I wrote and produced for The Felt. There were a few more than the ones that made it on to that album and later ones (like Afraid of the Darko and Everything is Something to Somebody) and those are all on here (including a better version of Afraid of the Darko done for Volume 8 that…didn’t get on, because it was finished too last-minute).

This one was one I was always a little sad didn’t make it onto the album proper because it’s so jovial; The Felt doesn’t have a lot of major key work on it, and to capture that feel of a weird time concert I wanted to have some stuff that was a bit hopeful and tuneful, too, with acoustic guitar noodling and bright piano and stuff. This is probably the most upbeat track I wrote for The Felt; it’s also one of my favorites. Hope it’ll be one of yours, too!

Heir Transplant

Robert J! Lake:

Homestuck updated today for the first time in MONTHS. Crazy, right? Celebrate with another preview track for Stuckhome Syndrome Part 1 V1: Years in the Past! (Still out 4/13, the day the comic ends forever. It’s been seven years, can you believe that?)

Thisn’s a redo I started a while back of Heir Transparent, without any of the material from Doctor (just the stuff I added for my mix). So it’s a rearrangement of a remix that’s 2x removed from the source, now? god this title is dumb but whatever i still love it

I might add strings, says me about every song now I guess. This would sound great with strings, though, so I will most likely! do that

Battle Theme for the Lost at Heart

Robert J! Lake:

See the above (Instructions on How to Fix the Future) for the context; a lot of themes of going against hopeless odds show up in Homestuck, anyway, and that’s one of my favorite themes to write for, in any guise (see also Curb Stomp the Finale, which is…not on this pre order). This kept more of the PSG/OPM Sega chip stuff in the current version, but I felt like the chorus needed more thump and less rump, so I gave it a dubstep bounce. This is not my area of expertise but it was really fun to put together even if I ended up having to export the chain through Maximus and import it back in as a sample to get the crushed dynamics without ruining the rest of the track.

Instructions on How to Fix the Future

Robert J! Lake:

Like Crock n’ Roll, this is an Alpha kid thing; I think I wrote it right after the Scratch? The original, also like Crock n’ Roll, was all PSG and OPM before I touched it up. Quite successfully, I think, too; this is my second favorite of the ones here. The bassline was really fun to write; I haven’t really done much stuff this funky before!

Crock n' Roll

Robert J! Lake:

Jane’s strife theme! Or, well, intended to be Jane’s strife theme. I think I started falling off of Homestuck sometime after Act 6, but at the start there I felt the most invigorated about the comic I had in years. The new kids were great, and of them Jane was far and away my favorite (which makes sense, given that Jade was my favorite before this; you’ll notice a lot of songs are written with her in mind). My goal here was to make something that mirrored Showtime without imitating or quoting it, and updating it for the new bunch of kids. The idea was that since the original bunch of strife themes were decidedly 8-bit, I’d go 16-bit; so we have Sega PSG and OPM sound chip emulation as the entire instrumentation, except for the spoons. The spoons (courtesy the wonderful Luke Benjamins) are there because she’s a baker, and Betty Crocker, and you get it.


Robert J! Lake:

If you haven’t recently checked or somehow don’t know about my upcoming 4/13 album of songs I wrote for Homestuck while I (and the rest of the music team, honestly) were way more active, you should do that! The album is $13.43 on release but only $9.87 now, so pre order while you still can! oh also that purchase will entitle you to four hundred and thirteen songs, no biggie

I updated it with a bunch of things people haven’t heard, including this, Unsoftly, which is a track that is not Softly, and you’re pretty sure never quite sounded like Softly, but is probably related in some way, you think. And you’d be right, because that’s the point

Jade was always probably my favorite character (Dave and John very close seconds) and though I tended to make songs that were super major key happy tunes, this was an attempt to explore her darker, weirder side. She’s all smiles most of the time but she’s also kind of fucked up if you think about it?


Robert J! Lake:

The above (TEAM_HeIR_sburb_alpha_v.06_fully_cracked.rar) was actually a section of this track I could never quite figure out how to incorporate, so I just split them. The idea here was pretty dumb, but it’s just “what if sburb was pirated? what would the keygen music sound like?” That’s what this is, it’s Homestuck keygen music. Pitched it for volume 5 to no avail.


Robert J! Lake:

Hey, wow, holy shit there is a huge new update and everyone is screaming like it’s 2012 again. Brings back memories.

Which reminds me: DID YOU KNOW that on 4/13 I’m releasing an album of music I did for Homestuck that has over four hundred songs on it? Yeah, it’s true. And it costs only $11.43! And right now you can get it for only $9.87. That’s crazy. Here’s the link:

Here’s a song from that album. It’s called Jadestep; originally done for Volume 8 as a mutation of something I tooled around with for Homestuck for the Holidays, it never really got finished with a level of polish I was satisfied with…until this morning! It’s not the first minute; it’s the whole dang thing!

Sbversive Jungle

Robert J! Lake:

This is the first minute of Sbversive Jungle, my take on what I thought the Alpha Kid Sburb loading screen would be. Given the jump elsewhere from 8 to 16 bit, I figured a jump from 90s/early 00s sim game pastiche to a more modern vibe seemed analogous, so you have this ambient texturey vibe that fits with stuff like Spore (which was a big inspiration) and other stuff of the like.

Disasterpeace and Ryan Roth were definitely big influences on this as well!

Music of Space

Robert J! Lake:

Muse of Space, music of space, get it. Really proud of the Boards of Canada vibe on the synths here. Yet another Cherubim draft, which I, a year later, added weird robot samples to to repurpose as a Cookie Clicker theme back when I was more obsessed with that then I am now. Initially I was going to actually pursue making a full album of that, but that seems silly, so here it is, Cookie Clicker ties removed, and fixed up with an end section it never had that hits pretty hard. One of my favorite bits on the album so far.

Uranium Flow

Robert J! Lake:

One of the oldest tracks here, believe it or not! All that’s new is mixing, some drums, and the bassline; the rest is exactly how it was in 2009. Two thousand and nine. I had intended to work on this further for an album, initially a volume, then later the Jade album, then a volume again. It’s spacey deep house because she’s the Witch of Space, you get me

Bird Versus Bee

Robert J! Lake:

A direct Jade album castoff, with only a solo added and drum mixing to distinguish it from early 2012. Very proud of this one, always was. Favorite track on the album, actually, tied with the next one. Really like the Boards of Canada vibe here, too. I, uh, like Boards of Canada. Canada you tell? Hah, hah. I have no earthly idea what the title means

Song for Rose Lalonde

Robert J! Lake:

This is the first minute and change of Song for Rose Lalonde, which I’m cleaning up and adding on to a bit. It has the distinction of being (until very recently) the last Homestuck song I ever wrote; this was just a few months after Cherubim. I planned on this being on Volume 10 but…more on Volume 10 later, friendos!

It had a pretty bad Piano VST until last night, when I threw some real piano sounds on it. Now it sounds…a lot better! I might add some strings before the final release, but maybe not.

Boy Skylark

Robert J! Lake:

Happy 4/13! This is the first time anyone’s heard this besides me. Also, FINALLY, IT UPLOADED! Because the mp3 was actually too big for Tumblr at…good quality…resolution. I had to drop it to a comparatively abysmal 128KBPS, so if you’re an audiophile, I’m sorry! Also, you can get it in good actual nice quality on the album, which you should buy. It’s here:

This song is four years old. The vocal track has been a part of it for four years. I wanted this thing on Volume 6! Then, as a bonus track on Volume 7, then on Volume 8, etc. I eventually gave up. It’s not like it’s the best song in the world but I was pretty proud of this weird baby. If you aren’t a fan of vocals, it’s fine; the instrumental is on the album!

Four Kids and a Game They Play Together

Robert J! Lake:

My other favorite. Written as an end credits theme for Homestuck as a whole in, like, early 2011? New stuff here is the guitar, which is literally all I changed; the Pixies-ish vibe on it just feels right. Probably one of my most melodically articulate compositions ever, and just a compositional high point for me in general. Sometimes a melody takes ages of work to figure out; I work by ear, and when something sounds bad (i.e. trite, boring, too much like a bad old third-rate video game soundtrack and not enough like a, you know, good melody), it can be a while before I can make it sound good. This one was almost effortless, though.


Robert J! Lake:

One of a few spinoffs/sequels to the track which the title mutated from; I did a lot of that kind of thing, only a bit of which got used (Pyrocumulus might be the most notable example).

Do Androids Dream of…?

Robert J! Lake:

Oh hell. Okay. So this was originally written for the Jade album that never happened (more on that later) but then I reworked it after it was pretty clear no more Homestuck music was going to happen (at least for a while) for a game called Sheep Keeper, which, amazingly, never ended up coming out. And I can’t find the source file; this is all I have. So you get the sheepy version, and there is almost nothing about sheep in Homestuck except for Aradia, and this song doesn’t feel like it really fits her, and I’m fully admitting this is getting pushed past the 43 mark on the album proper. THAT SAID: I think the melody is cute and solid, and I like the bouncy production. Which is, you know, why it’s not relegated to nothingness here.


Robert J! Lake:

This actually makes more sense if I talk about it with… (TEAM_HeIR_sburb_beta_v.01_fully_cracked.rar)


Robert J! Lake:

Wayward Vagabond Drinks Tab And Yeah Ok Sure I Really Need To Fix The Mixing


Robert J! Lake:

Another Wanderers castoff, this time about that one cute mail lady (hence the title). The production on it was fairly minimal; the spacious drums are new. I might fiddle with it a bit more but this one might get shoved past track 43 on the final, as with… (Lovetred)


Robert J! Lake:

Embarassingly, I don’t actually totally remember the context for this one (I think it’s a troll romance thing; there are a lot of incidents though where my themes got pretty loose, even in tracks that made it onto albums. I’ll be the first to admit, for instance, that Whistling Jackhammer is almost more inspired by Hussie’s earlier comic Whistles (hence the title) than Homestuck), but I do know that I reused the title for a game concept I had a few years later I never really went public with. Either way, it’s probably getting moved past track 43 as well; it’s good, and I’m proud of it, (the melodies are very inspired by George & Jonathan, which is a favorite group of mine) but it doesn’t quite feel right where it is. It’s finished, though, as is. A weirdo, for sure.


Robert J! Lake:

This grew out of a Cherubim draft; it’s much expanded upon here since that file, which is mostly just the main melody and bassline. I abandoned it in favor of Stellarum Salve early on, but I like how it turned out at this point.

Of Magic Towers, Swords, and Sorcery

Robert J! Lake:

Aaaaah! I consider this kind of a pair with Biophosphoradelecrystalluminescence in terms of aural space, but this was a Jade album castoff, as are three others here. That was me trying to make a Jade album with Clark Powell; it fell through when the solo albums stopped happening, but we dreamed big. Jane Dargason is probably the only real collaborative survivor of that in the end; the two of us should work together more. Anyway, this track is light and bouncy and features a lot of vocal samples. It’s exactly the same as it was when I pitched it to Volume 9 (after touching it up more); reusing tracks I did for other Homestuck albums ended up being a trend (so many Felt tracks got reused for later albums, like Afraid of the Darko).

...but not many

Robert J! Lake:

I was honestly blown away when I found this on my hard drive; a Wayward Vagabond track (from the Wanderer’s folder, which has a few other tracks in it, including the next one (P.S.)) that uses a clip of my voice as the lead. Cute as heck, with a phenomenal lead melody and chorus. It was very spare when I found it, but aside from doing new production (drums, bass, etc) and writing a new bridge, it’s basically the same as it was in early 2011.

View original file ( kB MB). (Heads up! If you're on a mobile plan, this is a large download.)