This week instead of the normal chipmusic that I usually review, I thought we’d look at something slightly different with the latest compilation by ‘Kitty On Fire Records’. For those who haven’t heard of them, ‘Kitty On Fire Records’ is a net label that releases all things Heavy electronic. This includes the genres associated with chiptune, such as ‘Nintendocore’, ‘Anime Breakcore’, ‘Glitch’, ‘Digital Hardcore’ and many more. I’ve been following ‘Kitty On Fire’ for a while now, with my biggest purchase being the cassette edition of this album.
This is forth installment of the compilation, which features 1-2 tracks from several artists across the world. For this release I’ll be reviewing three mind shattering tracks that really hooked me.
Debug My Video Game Error – CYBER SOLDIER [Japan]
We begin the review by looking the opening track off KOFR’s compilation, ‘CYBER SOLDIER’ by Japanese Band, ‘Debug My Video Game Error’. Reminiscent of bands like ‘Horse The Band’, ‘CYBER SOLDIER’ begins with splendid introduction solely using 16bit chiptune melodies and drums. We then leave the introduction, descending into a whirlwind of chaos between the guitar, bass, vocals, drums and synth. What’s great about ‘CYBER SOLDIER’ is that each instrument sticks to its own role and doesn’t try to take over. For instance, for the melody and leads we have the 16bit chiptune synth as well as the higher pitch frequencies, but for the mid and low frequencies we have the guitar and bass. Everything works extremely well and, whilst I cannot understand the lyrics ‘CYBER SOLDIER’, I really appreciate the passion and ferociousness coming from the vocals.
Mikau – Knife Edge Death Match [USA]
Next up we have, all the way from from Washington D.C, USA, ‘Mikau’ with ‘Knife Edge Death Match’. Just like in ‘CYBER SOLDIER’, ‘Knife Edge Death Match’ each instrument is played to its full potential, with just enough room left for the melodies of the synth to come through. Although rather short compared to ‘CYBER SOLDIER’, ‘Knife Edge Death Match’ packs enough of a punch to leave you a memorable taste of their style. The song begins with a quick but satisfying built up introduction complete with beautiful fat synth melodies, before commencing into a hell raising chorus. This is a such a great contrast between other parts, such as the tones of the introduction and verses, which are much softer and more melodic. This gives ‘Knife Edge Death Match’ a more definitive style in terms of tones and rhythm.
Who Stole The Cookie From The Cookie Jar – Next To Nothing [USA]
For my final pick we have Riverside, a Californian band, ‘Who Stole The Cookie From The Cookie Jar’ and their song, ‘Next to Nothing’. Whilst it starts very melodic for the introduction I can tell you: it’s anything but! Out all the tracks I’ve reviewed, ‘Next To Nothing’ is the heaviest music I’ve listened to and probably ever reviewed! More closely related to ‘Chipthrash’ and ‘Death Metal’, ‘Next To Nothing’ sent shivers down my spine with their vast array of heart pounding drum fills, razor sharp guitar riffs and blood boiling scream vocals. On the chiptune side, the gameboy is tightly controlled in contrast to thrash being put out, mainly being used in the introduction, bridge, chorus and outro. That said, it can feel at times rather progressive, with the introduction being one of the biggest factors towards this. As said towards beginning, the intro is a completely different beast, starting out as with a strong riff which is then built upon with the guitar, vocals and drums. Whilst it’s a great blending of chiptune into thrash, the intro cannot hold a candle to outstanding bridge sequence at ‘1:30’. It features some of the most tightly played chipmusic I’ve ever heard, the sound of all instruments combined rolling through like a hurricane, wrecking everything insight.
I’m happy to end my review on such a heavy track like ‘Next To Nothing’ as it gives a rounding off to the various styles that ‘Kitty On Fire have been releasing since forever. At current count we’re looking at 320 releases so far. That’s over 200 underground albums on Bandcamp alone! An incredible that I hope to see continue in the years to come!
This has been a blog post from Chip Bit Sid, a UK based Chiptune Blogger. Along with monthly features here on The ChipWIN Blog, I post once a week on my own blog. To get in touch, please message via the social media links below! I also do my own music under the banner as ‘Kojin’.