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.
Hello dear readers! I’m Pixel Syndrome, and if you love anthropomorphised Game Boys, rainbows and cool characters with green hair, then you may already know me from my colorful entries to the ‘Chiptunes WIN: Volume 7’ alternative covers!
I’m stoked to introduce my monthly international artist focused column titled The Overworld. Of course, being a fan of classic style NES games like Adventure Island II and Legend of Zelda, when trying to find a suitable name I could not shake the concept that sometimes when playing, we cannot see the bigger picture, and so it’s helpful to see the interconnection of all levels and locations of a videogame that’s an overworld map. Hopefully this international column will help everyone discover hidden areas in places we normally wouldn’t even think about; hidden locations and bonus levels of the world of Chiptune music as we know it.
This Chiptune auteur was born in the cold lands of Trelew (Rawson department of the Chubut Province), in southern Argentina. Growing up in this small, desertic climate city, with lots of wind, where the ocean dominates the horizon, and southern winds cause sudestadas (a.k.a. Intense wind storms that may bring heavy rain) has definitely left an imprint on her art.
It’s last review of the year for me and I thought I’d continue the trend by reviewing absolutely no chiptune. Last year was no contest for me and I reviewed one of my favourite ‘Futurefunk’ albums of the year, ‘Watashi No Yume Diary’ by ‘Bigwave Mikazuki’. It was a wonderful release that I continue to listen to this day. This year however has been harder to choose. Originally I was going to review ‘Moe Moe’ by ‘Moeshop’, an awesome release with a variety of singers. Featuring a worldwide collection of artists from Manchester’s own ‘MYLK’ to Kyoto’s ‘Toriena’, ‘Moe Moe’ was full to brim with character.
However, as the year started to draw to a close, I came across another album; ‘Static Electricity’ by ‘Utsuro Spark’ (released by New Japanese Net Label, ‘Local Visions’). Whilst ‘Moe Moe’ was bubbly and colourful, ‘Static Electricity’ managed to instantly hook me, both through its mystical music and passionate vocals. Ultimately it was the heart of ‘Static Electricity’ that won me over, even when I compared both albums vigorously against one another.
This year has been an excellent year for chipmusic using nanoloop. We’ve had a huge amount of releases ranging from the astounding ‘Geothermal’ by Classic Mistake, to the chilled as hell ‘Vanilla Dome’ by Glooms. This time we have Boaconstructor’s ‘Winds Of Null’. For context into ‘Boaconstructor’, he is a Seattle based musician who also runs ‘The Base bit’, one of the go-to net labels of chiptune. ‘The Base Bit’ have released a variety of accomplished albums such as ‘Refresh’ from Trey Frey, to ‘Steel City Zone’ by ‘HarleyLikesMusic’. It has been three years since ‘Boaconstructor’ has produced an album, with ‘Loop Dreams’ being released in 2015.
Whilst ‘Loop Dreams’ and ‘Winds Of Null’ were produced using Nanoloop, they are vastly different albums. ‘Loop Dreams’ focuses on using modulation to create weird and wonderful noises on a high BPM. ‘Winds Of Null’ on the other hand, focuses more on the bass, as well as detuning the melody and slowing down the music. For me I prefer Boaconstructor’s latest album, as I found it more accessible to listen to. The recording and mastering are also, in my opinion, much higher quality. Everything seems to pop better, with the levels balanced much better than ‘Loop Dreams’.
It is funny how plans can be altered within a second. Originally, I was going to review something else.However, just as I was about to put fingers to keyboard, I got an email: ‘Paladin Shield’ had just released a new album; ‘Many Blessings’! ‘Hot damn’, I said as I spent more money on yet another album. Below are three tracks that I loved off ‘Many Blessings’ and why I think it’s top notch.
¡Hola a todos! Aquí Paul del dúo francés de Chiptune Pain Perdu.
Algunos de ustedes tal vez conozcan nuestro canal de Youtube, donde he hecho varios video-tutoriales acerca de algunos aspectos técnicos del LSDJ que, en mi opinión, a veces son mal entendidos, ignorados o poco utilizados. En términos de ergonomía, potencial para hacer música en bruto y qué tan fácil es que la gente pueda acceder a parámetros que garanticen un control extremadamente minucioso sobre el sonido; LSDJ es un programa fantástico. De hecho, a mi parecer destaca como el secuenciador que alcanza un equilibrio casi perfecto entre complejidad y accesibilidad. El que sea presentado en el Museo Sueco de Música y Artes Escénicas es un logro bien merecido.