Oh thank heaven, et cetera. Volume Two keeps its momentum going with none other than…
Track #7: 505 – Dataride
The best tracks always leave you wanting more. No stranger to crafting epic journeys, 505 exhibits the same songwriting qualities on Chiptunes = WIN Volume 2 that made his 2012 release Interlude an absolute gem. Taking just the right amount of time to introduce the key elements, 505’s track shines even brighter at the 1:02 mark, stuttering into a perfect stride as the kick drum drives everything home. At two minutes in, a great melody starts to overlay the foundation of this one while an amazing solo closes out the final sixteen seconds. Dataride could go on for twice as long without overstaying its welcome…but that’s what the repeat button is for.
Track #8: James Landino – Blue (Dj CUTMAN mix)
Boston chip artist James Landino, a.k.a. KgZ, serves up his own wicked brand of house alongside a very special guest. Stepping out from behind the curtain, Dj CUTMAN puts his own spin on an already-solid work. CUTMAN’s presence is notable here, adding a whole new dimension of sound and definitely bringing the bass. The minimalism present around the 1:42 mark is welcome and while this segment closed out the original version of the track, CUTMAN wisely uses it to build upon and reprise the opening melody. Which, really, is a testament to the quality of James Landino’s composition. Excellent collaboration.
Track #9: Twistboy – Springs
Relative newcomer (to chip, anyway) Twistboy supplies one of the few LSDJ tracks on Volume Two, but it’s here for a reason. A delightfully funky work with some amazing spacing, allowing it to breathe, Springs is aptly-titled. Perfectly suited for the dance floor, it’s somehow both soothing and energetic. If you dig this be sure to check out his On Vacation EP. This dude’s going places.
Track #10: Vince Kaichan – Iskloo Dandruff/Morningstar Express
Vince Kaichan…There’s only one Vince Kaichan. While Iskloo Dandruff strikes me as a very Kirby-esque song, the swirling melodies add a unique touch. There’s not many composers that can pull off something this impressive so seemingly effortlessly. The subtle pitch bends and notes add a lot of flavor. If I’m at a loss for words, it’s only because this is one of my absolute favorite tracks. Vince Kaichan has a natural gift for composition and I’m always excited to hear what he produces. This is an essential listen.
Track #11: Zackery Wilson – Ain’t Got Time to Bleep
At a brisk 1:39, who am I to argue? This track tears out of the gates with furious purpose and MINDBLOWING technical prowess. With no disrespect intended, you could tell me Yuzo Koshiro himself wrote this and I would ACTUALLY believe you. Zackery Wilson has more raw passion, ideas and skill jam-packed into this amazing 99 seconds than many artists can muster for an entire album. Not exactly a surprise, though! As a trained (read: professional) composer, pianist and old-school Nintendo enthusiast, with numerous awards and accolades to his name, Zackery knows his craft VERY well. His influences are especially notable from the :40 mark on, as a Jun Ishikawa-like segment flows magnificently from this point. Simply put, Zackery Wilson has mastered brevity as an art form.
That’s it for our second round of artists! Stay tuned for next week’s coverage of Chiptunes = WIN: Volume 2! (OH AND MAYBE BRKFEST)