If you listen to the Topless Robot podcast, you may have wondered who plays our intro and outro music. Well, wonder no more! That band is Help Desk. A nerdy pop-punk band from Madison, Wisconsin. They were kind enough to let us use their music in our stuff, so the least we can do is feature them on a Tune Tuesday, right?
Help Desk specializes in powerful, driving pop-punk of the 90s variety, with witty lyrics focusing on gaming and office culture. They even play shows wearing headsets, white button-up shirts, and ties. If not for the headsets, you’d mistake them for mormons. Their lyrics range from goofy wordplay while trying to woo Sally in accounting to revolutionary office battle cries.
In the song Taking LIberties, the last song off their debut EP (also our adopted podcast theme song), they suggest participating in the office revolution by slacking off. “Sometimes you have to sit, if you want to make a stand.”
On the more serious side of things, there’s the song 7 cents off their second EP, Reboot & Rally. This one yells eloquently about the gender wage gap. “Politics, Policy, Punishment for women who try to take the lead, Status Quo, misogyny, She’s qualified to fuck, but not to fucking run your company”
On a goofier note, we have the forbidden office crush on Sally in accounting. Filled with finance related wordplay such as, “Sally, why won’t you audit me? Sally, I’ll be 1040EZ”
Those are just a few of my favorite picks from their releases, but I assure you there is not a bad song among the bunch. Everything is recorded DIY at their guitarist Drew’s house and self-released. That said, the quality of the writing, mixing, and mastering betray its DIY source. There’s nothing amateur about these albums.
Even their music videos are a higher quality than you’d expect from some indie punk band from the midwest.
That’s Lords of the Trident’s Fang Von Wrathenstein’s mild-mannered alter-ego, Ty Christian playing the main character in that video, but we’ll cover Lords of the Trident another day.
Their live shows are no less spectacular than their music. They open their shows with special recorded intros. Two years ago, when my band Sparklefuck had our reunion show, I got to record Help Desk’s intro for the night.
With all of this said, I do have one complaint. There’s not a lot of music available. I crave more, and I hope you do too. You can find more Help Desk on their Bandcamp and Facebook, and if you live in the midwest, keep an eye on your local shows and now that when their name pops up, that’s a show you don’t want to miss!
Ryan Schremp is a life-long geek of varying flavors, has previously written for Maximum Ink music magazine, but is most known for voicing characters like James Kroll in the indie game Vaporum, being one of the regular mascots for the ska band Mustard Plug, and for narrating creepy stories on his podcast Creepypodsta.