Archive for the ‘Album Reviews’ Category

A Square Meal: ‘High Flyer’ by Karl Brueggemann

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About a year ago, the way I see, listen, and even make chiptune changed completely thanks to a brilliant album filled with funky rhythms and bright harmonies in a way I’d never imagined possible. So, when I discovered the songs were made using a huge range of techniques involving FM Synthesis and decided to delve into it, a whole new world of possibilities opened up to me. I discovered new sounds and styles; nearly infinite possibilities to express oneself through a limited sound chip.

A few months later, and with a musical phrase stuck in my head after clicking a link posted by President Hoodie, I realized the contrasting and flexible nature of FM chipmusic. All the credit for this epiphany of mine goes to a single person, whose fresh way of making music really stuck with me: Karl Brueggemann. Today, I want to talk about the album that made me realize just how cool FM Synthesis could be. So let’s take a look at ‘High Flyer’ by Karl Brueggemann, released through Super Marcato Bros.

Artwork by Karl Brueggemann.
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‘Spacetunes = WIN’ Full Review

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Greetings, Chip-stronauts! 🚀 ✨

It’s Brandon here once again with the customary introduction for our latest compilation review crew! In order of appearance, Aydan, Adam, & clover share thoughtful musings on the 31 stellar compositions that make up ‘Spacetunes = WIN‘.

First, enjoy the equally amazing SpaceWIN art slideshow below, and then drift deeply on into the cosmic compilation read/listen!

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Chip Bit Sid Takes On: Shortee – ‘Lost’

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After a month off to focus on other matters, it feels good to be back reviewing music at ChipWIN. ‘Lost’ by Shortee was an album that slipped under my radar last year, but as soon as I started listening to it, ‘Guten Morgen’ immediately became one of my top 10 tracks of 2018. That said, the album has plenty more songs worth delving into, so I wanted to do a showcase on The ChipWIN Blog and dive into Shortee’s debut album.

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Clover Chain Reacts To: Purely Grey – ’27’

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On January 11th, 1992, Alex Soborov was born. Since then, he has made dozens and dozens of chiptune tracks and other music as Purely Grey and, previously, Twistboy. He has contributed to Chiptunes = WIN as both a musician and a judge, and he’s run a family-owned (aren’t they too cute?!) netlabel called Tracked for chiptune releases and cassette tapes for nearly three years now. In 2018, Alex released a track every single week, and on January 11th, 2019, many of them were put together to form ’27’, a celebration of Soborov’s 27th year on this earth. Supposedly. Based on this music, he may have been studying the arts somewhere else, learning another plane’s stellar wisdom.

Bursting with clarity, consistency, and an endearing freshness to it, ’27’ is shaping up to be my favorite album released this year, and I’m saying that in February. It’s full of enthusiastic decisions, delicious instrumentation, fun harmonies, interesting melodies, gutsy and smart rhythm, and an integral originality in how each track is structured and how they bounce off one another.

Let’s start at the ending.

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Rhyphte Reviews: ‘.​-​-​. .​.​- .​-​.​. .​-​.​.’ (pull) by null

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Back in 2011, before I had been formally introduced to chiptune, I listened to a lot of folk and indie artists. Modest Mouse, Built to Spill, Tree People, and AJJ (then Andrew Jackson Jihad) dominated my playlists and YouTube history. I listened to that music so often that as I got older I had to start taking breaks from it because it felt too familiar. But nevertheless, those records maintained their value to me over the years, acting as my go-to answer when asked about the kind of music I like.

So what does all that have to do with ‘.​-​-​. .​.​- .​-​.​. .​-​.​.’ by null? Well, there’s a special feeling you get when you hear a song that sounds enough like your favorite band to make you do a double take. When you find yourself wondering if you didn’t get the memo about their early-years alias. When you realize you’ve discovered something completely new, but so similar to what you’re fond of. It’s a good feeling – and when you hear chiptune in it, it’s an even better feeling. And here’s where I tell you all about it.

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A Square Meal: ‘Insert Disk 02’ by Game Genie Sokolov

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Since the beginning, humanity has had some epic arguments about just the most important, finest and serious topics: why are we here? Good or evil? Should the pizza be topped with pineapple? And of course: does Sega really do what NintenDoesn’t? Well, I won’t intend nor dare to give an answer to any of the previously mentioned questions (especially to the last one); but if you are up for some quality FM Chiptune, today’s article is going to completely blow your mind.

From all the options we have to listen and appreciate chiptune nowadays, it’s always nice to find some first-rate music made specifically to be played on a Sega Genesis. That’s why when I knew that there was a Montreal artist who makes it, I got myself ready for an incredible experience. Of course I’m talking about Game Genie Sokolov. Maybe you remember GG Sokolov’s tremendous work from ‘Chiptunes = WIN Vol. 5’, ‘Deskpop & ChipWIN’ or ‘FM: Possible 2‘; but this time we’ll talk about this new and super awe-inspiring album: ‘Insert Disk 02’ released through the French Canadian netlabel Lisbon Lux Records. So let’s take a look over it… Sega style!

Cover by John Londono and Maina Militza.
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