Posts Tagged ‘SMILETRON’

Aydan Appreciates: You

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Greetings, readers. Under normal circumstances, I’d have a review lined up as an article, and maybe even an interview to cap it off and give you folks a little bit of insight into the artist’s creative process. However, unforeseen hurdles caused me to scrap the review I had lined up, and I went into a creative slump. This article was supposed to publish two weeks ago today, for perspective, but now I’ve worked up the motivation to write again. So, rather than doing a traditional review or interview-review combination, I’d like to talk about something else: the community we’ve fostered for the last six or so years, and what it’s done for me in terms of my personal growth as both a writer and a human being. So, let’s start from the beginning.


Aydan Appreciates: ‘EXILE’ and ‘OUTLAW’ by Tri Angles

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“As always, we’ll reach the other side. 
As always, I send my best regards. 
I do not know where I am headed next, 
but I know that, as always, 
a great adventure awaits…”

As the year 2013 comes to an end, we’ve covered some seriously incredible artists and their work here on The ChipWIN Blog. It’s amazing how time flies, and I’m happy to say that this has been a HUGE year for the chipmusic community. As many of you know, SMILETRON has been put to rest, so to speak; no more productions will be seen under this alias. However, a new path is being forged by this legendary musician, artist, and wanderer, under the name of Tri Angles. Expressing himself with a new sound, Tri Angles weaves a beautiful, intricate, lo-fi soundscape as a gift from himself to the world with each song he creates. ‘EXILE’ and ‘OUTLAW’ are Tri Angles’ most recent presents to the world, just in time for the holidays.

‘EXILE’ opens with its namesake. The track’s percussive effects are quiet and soothing, never overpowering the chill-out vibes that Tri Angles’ melodies inspire within their listeners. Karle Moulden provides beautiful guitar work for an already awe-inspiring track, and adds to the mood by blending riffs in seamlessly. ‘RETROGRADE’ provides a drum ‘n bass-esque feel to Tri Angles’ signature sound, and ‘HALO (ft. Bubu)’ is an aural experience I won’t soon forget. This track in particular instills a feeling of adventure and longing within me; it reminds me of the many walks in the woods I used to take as a child, and provides a certain sense of wonder for any listener. ‘EXILE’ closes out with ‘TRANSIENCE’, a calming piece that sounds as though it’s straight from a dream. Beautiful chords ring out above an almost near-absent percussion, and as the notes swell, a euphoric sensation arises within its listeners.

‘OUTLAW’, Tri Angles’ most recent single, is a lo-fi drum ‘n bass masterpiece. Opening with a rather straightforward melody, it is quickly changed into something entirely different with the addition of many other instruments. The scratching sounds that appear around the midpoint of the track are a welcome addition to this piece of ambient art, and they leave just as abruptly as they enter, providing for two truly different sections within the song. [Editor’s note: Also, Firefly reference FTW. 8) ]

With Tri Angles having been one of the most influential artists in my life, and, through his previous alias as SMILETRON, one of the first chipmusicians I ever listened to, I’ve always been intrigued by what his musical influences are, and about his musical career as a whole. I reached out to him, and we spoke at length about these things and more. For all of you ChipWINners out there, here’s my exclusive interview with the one and only Tri Angles!

Aydan: First, I wanna say thanks for taking the time out of your day to be willing to do this interview with me. I really appreciate it!

Tri Angles: Of course! It’s my pleasure.

Aydan: I suppose I’ll lead off by asking about your influences. Can you try to describe from where you draw inspiration to make your music?

Tri Angles: Hmmm…from life, I suppose. I’ve always been told that to be a good storyteller, you should write what you know; I try to apply that to music. I write about things I experience, and the ways I view them. I try to put some kind of creative spin on it. I’ve always been of the opinion that for the purest musical output, you have to limit the amount of outside influence coming in, so most of my inspiration comes from life itself, as opposed to say, other musicians, my peers, etc. The vast majority of what I write about comes straight out of my soul.

A lot of it comes straight out of my dreams. I sleep a lot, probably too much. I’m a daydreamer, and a night-dreamer, ha. Always been a little out there. I’ve also been really into this space opera and sci-fi/future western kick lately, and there’s definitely some spillover into what I write.

I guess I try to be a little bit larger than life when I am doing musical things, because that’s what I feel any good storyteller should try to be. You embellish a little, perfect your art, and share it with everyone you can. Past that…just trying to make the coolest sounds that I can!

Aydan: That’s…incredible. Being able to pull that much musical talent without taking much influence from other artists, if any at all, is almost unheard of nowadays. I really respect that! Your music is really inspirational to a lot of people throughout the chipmusic world, myself and Hoodie included, and you’re a really talented musician and artist.

My second question is about the change from your previous alias, SMILETRON, to your new alias, Tri Angles. Can you explain the reasoning behind the change? I personally feel a huge change between SMILETRON’s style, so to speak, and that of Tri Angles.

Tri Angles: Mainly I felt like SMILETRON was a finished story. It felt like the right thing to do, so as hard as it was to let go of my comfort zone, I wrapped up all the loose ends, poured all of my soul into it, and released it into the internet forever. I guess, in some way, that part of me will live forever, and I think that’s a pretty powerful thing.

I really wanted to branch off into new things, experiment with new styles and sounds; my life has been changing pretty dramatically over the last year and I needed a new…direction, I guess. I’m more than a little rebellious at heart and that plays into a lot of it.

At the same time, a lot of it is still the same. I suppose you could say it’s kind of a sequel. I wanted to start a new journey, but in a completely different direction while still retaining everything I had learned and accomplished on the last one. I definitely feel like there is a lot more room for growth and exploration on this current musical trajectory than there was with SMILETRON.

It’s a little sad to say that I wanted to distance myself from being a “chiptune” artist, because…well, for being so closely tied to the chipmusic scene, I probably write the least amount of actual, legitimate chipmusic out of any of my musical peers. I do definitely try to incorporate that mindset into writing new music, though. I have a lot of respect for it, but at the same time I feel it’s been healthy for my musical growth to distance myself from it.

At the same time, I stay close to the chipmusic world because I really do love it, and the people who comprise it. As far as musical “scenes” go, it’s definitely the tightest-knit, most inspiring, community-driven group of musicians I’ve ever come across and it’s amazing to be a part of it, even if I just drift around the fringes these days.

As for how Tri Angles came to be, well…it’s the name I’ve been given. It seemed like the appropriate, natural progression of things. I adopted it wholeheartedly, even into my personal life. A little bit of anonymity is nice.

Aydan: Anonymity is definitely welcome nowadays. One last question, concerning your future forays into music. Are you thinking of taking an even more dynamic change in direction with your music? Or can you give me a hint as to what your future endeavors may entail?

Tri Angles: Honestly, I don’t know! I kind of just take it as it comes. I feel my musical mind being pulled in a lot of different directions, and it’s getting harder and harder to just pick one and follow through. But I’ve been dreaming a lot recently, so much, an almost overpowering amount…so I imagine things will start materializing pretty soon! Probably some familiar sounds, some new sonic territories. I only know to keep moving forward.

Aydan: Well, whichever path you choose to follow, I wish you the best of success.

Tri Angles: Thanks, friend. :)

Aydan: Not a problem, friend. :) Thank you so much for doing this, again!

As Chris noted two months ago, a large part of the experience of listening to Tri Angles’ music is the responsibility of the listener to interpret it and give it a meaning of their own. I truly hope that each and every one of you has gathered something from this, be it insight, inspiration, knowledge, or anything else.

Happy holidays. <3


Tri Angles
Bandcamp | Facebook | Soundcloud

C=W logo redux (larger)

8-Bit Banter with DjjD: Ugress ‘n Bits

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Hey all, DjjD here.

Been a while since my last post here at Chiptunes = WIN HQ. After a fallout with a couple of interviews; a couple dozen hours spent in a digital audio workstation… one finds oneself stuck in a pickle. Thankfully, playlists are heroes. When you least expect it, you’ll find one song that you like… and start replaying all the memories from when you first heard it. The power of music, right?

Ugress, is friggin’ crazy. With an ever growing list of amazing tunes (396 currently on his Soundcloud), he’s certainly a diverse fellow. While I initially started listening to his music due to my love of all things “Spider Man“, I learned that was just the beginning of the rabbit hole.


What I was most interested in was when I encountered his ‘bleep-bloop’ chiptune side project codename, ‘Ninja 9000‘. Via this alias he spawned 3 EPs: ‘Bit Collapse’, ‘Bit Escape’, and ‘Bit Awake’. ‘Bit Awake’ is the newest installment but considering these are all 20 mins or less, it might be best if I just covered them all!

Bit Collapse‘:

This album has a very raw feel to it, but in a good way. It utilizes noises from the Amiga and C64 from how it sounds. Some of the songs have vocals but I gotta say for me, it’s all about the song “Katoku Pokus”. That pluck mixed with a dreamy arpeggio and finally filled out with guitar chugs and slides: beautiful. Parts of this make me think of SMILETRON, not by sound, but by that abstract yet cohesive idea that can only really be heard by listening to the full song. It’s a journey, and if you start, you gotta finish out the ride until that train stops.

Bit Escape‘:

Wow, this album already has a much darker feel, right off the bat. It feels like an ominous, future world, one that has been overcast with the stench of decay and corrosion for over 200 years. Society has been threatened for ages, ever since the dawn of the *insert creative alien name here*, because of the fallout caused by *insert apocalyptic event here*. Really interesting stuff. Trekking through bleeps and bloops never felt so mysterious.

Bit Awake‘:

This one is much more upbeat from the get-go. You’ve synth guitars wailing and a random face staring at you via the mesmerizing artwork. Gotta say, this is probably my favorite out of the 3. Can’t help but groove to the 2nd track, “Vaporform”. It has such an eerie yet danceable feeling and only continues throughout the rest of the EP. “The sun rises over a vast canyon, for the people are now growing healthy; aware that their enslavers are destroyed, they start a new life, one of peace and prosperity.” Got all that from “Raster Curtains”.

These are ALL free tunes and all are very well worth your time. This artist is awesome and so are all of the songs from all of his personas. If you’re looking for music that tells a story, I’ve just painted a picture but…this is but one perspective. You could experience the same adventure and have the same set of tools but ultimately tread a different path. Enjoy and thanks for reading!

GMM/Ugress/Ninja 9000: Home Site | Soundcloud | Facebook | Twitter


Chris Considers: The Tri Angles Trifecta

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The ending of one journey manifests the beginning of another. As many of our readers may know, the performance at BRKFest 2013 marked the end of SMILETRON; one of the most beloved and prolific artists in chipmusic. It was an amazing, bittersweet set filled with emotion. But you don’t have to take my word for it, Hoodie and Chip Mom gave an excellent firsthand account in their post-BRKfest interview with Kuma on this very blog.

Shortly thereafter, the SMILETRON archives was curated and released through Noisechannel. It’s an absolutely staggering body of quality work spanning 26 albums over a period of 6 years; an accomplishment that many artists strive to achieve over a lifetime. I can’t speak for all the fans, but as for myself, wanting more felt greedy. Yet it was still so hard to see such a pillar of the chiptune community and beyond come to an end! Fortunately for everyone, it is as much a part of this musicians nature to create and explore as it is for a bee to make honey.

At the time of this writing, we are already 3 EPs in on a new adventure with Tri Angles! And just in case there’s anyone out there with any trepidations about the new project, let me allay them for you right now. Mr. Angles delves further into new realms of sonic excellence, using chip sounds as a launching pad and adeptly blending multiple styles and genres in order to create something magical. But really, was there anyone who thought that their ears weren’t in good hands?

Right out of the gate of his first release ‘STARGAZER’, energetic guitar riffs merge with soaring, high-pitched vibrations to create a track full of invigorated ambience with a side of badass in ‘RENEGADE’. ‘SLIPSTREAM’ follows suit and features 2 leads that ebb and flow from dueling with each other one moment, to working in perfect harmony the next. The album closes on a tranquil note and exhibits a delightfully playful interplay between the leading melodic tones and the bassline of the title track.

Tri Angles takes things down a notch and ups the chillwave in his second EP, ‘OUT THERE’. The title track stirs up an ethereal mixture of wailing guitar and groovy bass. It then promptly ends my heretofore silence on the masterful percussion found throughout this music. The intricate beats are endlessly interesting and form a solid foundation to Mr. Angles’ sound. At the 3:00 mark, they take center stage and encase the soundscape like a shell, forming what feels like (with headphones) an overhead wall of sound that is buckling under pressure. ‘NOWHERE’ featuring Karle Moulden takes us further into new styles with subdued chiptune forming the backdrop to an extremely soulful and plaintive blues guitar. ‘DISCONNECTION’ drifts and recedes into the listener’s subconcious before gently ending the transmission.

The final piece of the trifecta is ‘VENTURE’, and it does just that. ‘AFTERBURN’ blasts off with controlled intensity; a sharp static effect is joined by growling bass and an increasingly frenetic beat, culminating into a glorious glitchfest! ‘BUSINESS’ ventures even further off the beaten path, adopting a world music vibe and incorporating acoustic guitar with click-clack percussion that seriously sounds like sampled kitchenware. Brilliant! In the title track and album finisher, another beautifully rich tapestry of sound is created. Little sonic stars shimmer in the background throughout this piece, creating an atmosphere that is just mesmerizing. Also, there is something about that *pop* sound at the 44 second mark when the song starts to take off that is just so satisfying!

The difficult part about reviewing Tri Angles’ music is that it may be easy to describe, but hard to fully convey. There is still something missing here… You, the listener, are a vital participant in the experience! You must bring your own thoughts and feelings to the journey and form your own meanings. What I can do without hesitation is wholeheartedly recommend that you take the trip and support this treasure of an artist. You can be sure that all of us here at ChipWIN HQ will be locked to Mr. Angles’ frequency for the foreseeable future, excitedly looking forward to his next transmission.


Bandcamp | Facebook | Soundcloud


Raw Cuts With Kuma Special: BRKFest 2K13

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Hey guys!  Welcome back to Raw Cuts!  This time around, we have a very special edition of RC, as I took the time to sit down with three very special people to reflect on the event everyone is still buzzing about: BRKFest 2K13!  So without further ado, here’s my interview with Brandon “President Hoodie” Hood, Erin “Chip Mama” McQuisten, and Rob Remy “AutoRemi-PK” Pease about the event everyone is calling “The New Blipfest”!

Kuma:  So, it’s been a while since we’ve all been together. 8 months, in fact.  Jeeze can you believe that?  I haven’t seen ya’ll in 8 months?

AutoRemi-PK (Remy):  That’s nine months too long.

President Hoodie (Hoodie): DEFINITELY way too long.

Kuma:  You guys on the other hand though: ya’ll got to go to BRKFest, which looked awesome from what I saw on Clipstream!

Hoodie:  YES. YES IT WAS.  It seriously felt like a mini-Blipfest, no lie.

Kuma:  That’s actually what I wanted to ask you guys!  You’ve all been to a lot of fests. Blip, PAX, MAG, Nerda.  How did BRK compare to those?

Chip Mama (Mama):  Well it was my first all chip show.  I’d seen a bunch of good chip acts at MAG, Nerda, and PAX, but the amount of awesome at BRK was overwhelming.

Hoodie:  Yeah.  I love Blipfest (or at least the one that I made it to in 2011! haha), but BRK definitely felt like a smaller, more tightly knit Blip.  It was endless good times! And dickbutts.  Lots and lots of dickbutts.

Actually, that’s my one regret: I didn’t get to draw a dickbutt on anything. :*(  Tommy (Thunderfox) brought a shirt that everyone signed and Tony (monotony) had his cast up for inking.

Remy:  BRK is a lot smaller but a lot more closely-knit.

Mama:  I agree with Remy: it seemed like everyone there knew each other either from in person or on the tubes.

Kuma:  Wait really?  That was your first all chip show?  I find that hard to believe considering you’re Chip Mama!

Mama:  I consider myself home-schooled in chiptune by one of the best.

Hoodie:  HAHAHA!

Remy:  Brandon isn’t the president we need but he’s the one we deserve.

hoodie batman hero
Kuma:  I’d hope so!  I think it’d be a disservice to all of us if you were just on the side while Brandon did all this fun shit!

Hoodie:  Real talk: BRK = only my second “all” chip show!

Kuma:  What? Brandon you too! You’re our President!  watrudoin!

Hoodie:  Sure, I’ve been to a handful of MAGs, Nerdas, PAXs, etc., but not too many *JUST* chip shows.  I wholly blame my location for that: BF, Arkansas. >_>
Working on that, tho…

Kuma:  You’d better.  Remy, the close knit feel at BRK, did it feel like 8static?

Remy:  It felt like 8static with southern hospitality. I can safely say that the best bar and the best coffee joint I’ve been to were literally right across the street from one another.

Kuma:  Yo seriously, what was up with that place you guys all went to eat at!  All the pictures of the food from there look like waffle house x9000!

Hoodie:  DAMN. NO KIDDING. Al’s bar & that coffee & donut joint = QUALITY.

Mama:  Oh my lord, the food and the coffee joint were AMAZING.

Remy:  The Institute in Philly is a TOUGH spot to top but Al’s Bar in Lexington really won my heart.

Mama:  Al’s was full of really nice people and a lot of first timers hearing chip that DUG IT and left with stickers and CDs and everything.

Hoodie:  Everyone was talking about the grub from Al’s last year. I expected decent pub grub at best, which would’ve been cool. Not the case, though. FANTASTIC EATS.

Mama:  One random guy even ended up crowd surfing during Trey Frey’s set.

Remy:  Yeah, the food at Al’s Bar puts most dining establishments- forget bars- to shame.

al's bar burger daniel davis

Photo courtesy of Daniel Davis (an0va).

Hoodie:  Damn, I could sure go for one of those Apple Jacks donuts at that coffee shop right about now…

Kuma:  What!  Strangers crowd surfing to chip and a bar that beats out The Institute?  Now I have to make it next year!

Mama:  Hell yes you do!  One of the bouncers went home with ChipWIN CDs!  And the bartenders had a stack!  The music was beyond what I expected!

Hoodie:  More real talk: BRK turned out *EVEN BETTER* than I expected.  The music, the people (locals included!), the food, EVERYTHING = WIN.

Kuma:  Damn it, I really have to do this next year! But, damn: so many things to go to next year!  That being said, you guys have any crazy fun stories you want to share? I’d love to hear about random after party nonsense or travel stories that you may have!

Mama:  Can we talk about the mustache dude that crowd surfed for a second?  cuz WOW!!!

Hoodie:  Hahahahahaha YES!

Remy:  Yes we can.

Kuma:  Mustached dude?

Hoodie:  I totes thought he was a creeper at first. hahaha.

Kuma:  God that alone sounds like half of chiptune!

Mama:  He’d never even HEARD of chiptune before.  I thought he was a creeper at first cuz he was taking pictures, but when folks started talking to him he was totally enthusiastic.

Remy:  Because if anything embodies what makes this collective scene great, it’s the reception he gave all of us that night and the one he got in turn.

Hoodie:  By mustache dude, we mean some random local who came to Al’s to grab a few beers and encountered chiptune for the first time in his life and HAD A DAMN BLAST.

Mama:  Wanted to be able to show his friends “the future of electronic music”


mark thomas the cutting edge

Kuma:  OMG that’s so damn cool!  Was he an older cat?  He sounds like an older cat!

Hoodie:  Totes an older cat.  Leather motorcycle jacket and everything.

Kuma:  NICE!

Mama:  40s – 50s, I’d say.

Hoodie:  Wearing a mustache competition t-shirt. hahaha

Remy:  He actually crowd surfed during Trey Frey‘s set!

mark thomas crowd surf

Photo courtesy of Shane Banegas (shanebro).

Kuma:  WAT!!! We got a possibly 50 year old chiptune fan out there because of you guys! that’s so freaking amazing!

Hoodie:  Seriously, that whole incident finished off the final night PERFECTLY.

Remy:  He won best mustache, both at BRK and in our hearts.

Mama:  He’s friended a bunch of us on FB and wrote a really awesome thank you note on the BRKfest FB page.

Hoodie:  “The Mustache of Our Hearts” <– ALBUM TITLE

Mama:  LOL.  You’re totally right, Remy.

Kuma:  Now I gotta ask, cause Dan Park hasn’t finished uploading all the video to YouTube yet, and I could catch all the sets on Clipstream, but for real: was trey’s set that godly?

Remy:  Yes.

Hoodie:  It was damn fantastic.

Remy:  Plain and simple yes.

Mama:  He got stage rushed on the second song, if that says anything!

Kuma:  D= NO WAI!

Remy:  Solarbear had us bumrush the stage and you don’t say no to that man and his beard.

curtis ware and his beard

Photo courtesy Curtis Ware (solarbear) and Chris de Pew (Storm Blooper).


Hoodie:  And I’ll own up to this here too: I’ve always enjoyed Trey Frey’s music, but never caught him live before.  And honestly, just never *quite* understood why people freak out about him *SO* much.

*NOW* I get it. *EXCELLENT* music.  And just an all around quality dude, too.  Super chill, super nice.

Kuma:  Now I gotta hear this!

Remy:  Trey Frey is as great a person as he is a musician, and that’s saying a LOT.

Hoodie:  Agreed 1000% Remy.  You can just tell that with some people.  Just by interacting with them, watching them interact with other people, talking to them a bit.

Kuma:  Yo, speaking of super chill, super nice, that final SMILETRON set, man.  I didn’t catch all of BRK, but that set man…I felt the feels through the stream, man.

Hoodie:  EXTREME amount of feels. Feels overload. 34987sadf654asdf654345.  Almost solemn even.  When the hell does *THAT* adjective come into play for a chipshow? Appropriate though.

smiletron chiptography

Photo courtesy Marjorie Becker (Chiptography).

Mama:  There were tears and sniffles.  At least from me.

Hoodie:  I held it in.  Just barely.

Mama:  SMILETRON is significant for me, since it was one of the first artists Bran and I listened to on some long car trips.

Hoodie:  Erin almost screwed that up for me.

Mama:  Sorry, babe.

Hoodie:  Ay.  He was one of the first artists I introduced her to in the chipworld, and just one of our favorites in general.

Kuma:  God, I can only imagine how you two must have felt seeing him. How bittersweet.

Mama:  Just watching his face during the set, it was almost like he was saying goodbye…

smiletron chiptography bittersweet

Photo courtesy Marjorie Becker (Chiptography).

Hoodie:  A bit sad to see him close up that chapter in his musical life, but at the same time major props to him for doing that when it feels right vs. continuing to drag it out beyond what is proper.

Remy:  I want to say that Casshern and S.P.R.Y. in particular did such an amazing job keeping that stream going and it is with no disrespect that I say no video could hope to capture the energy in that room.

Hoodie:  Like I said, some solemn heavy stuff, man. But in a *GOOD* way.

Remy:  Very much so.  It was cathartic.

Hoodie:  Agreed. Speaking of those cats, though, + the live sound guy & various visualists, AMAZING ZOMBOFURKIN JOB on *ALL* their parts!

Kuma:  Definitely on both accounts.  That was a solemn show if I ever saw one, but man, did SPRY and Dan kick ass for us at home!  I really wanna do something for them to thank them for all the hard work they did.

He did an *EXCELLENT* job, no doubt.  Hell, I didn’t think there even *WAS* gonna be a Clipstream until within the last weekend.  Glenntai stepped up to rock that, and then when he had to bow out because of illness Dan volunteered to take it over.  And he certainly did.

dan park chiptography

Photo courtesy Marjorie Becker (Chiptography).

Mama:  I think I gave them cookies. If I didn’t, they deserve some!

  Yeah, the visualists were awesome, too!  I definitely recognized ohhinaifu and datacats work there!  Who else was running viz for BRK?

Remy:  I have endless respect for datacats, both for all that he did to help me get out there, and the hard work he put in on visuals and his (TWO!) performances.  There was a PIXELSEED video used, which is always awesome, and I believe andaruGO stepped up for visuals for a couple of sets!

Hoodie:  And somebody else too, I believe.

Kuma:  Wow, andaru does visuals?  I know he does graphic design and illustration, but I didnt know he does live visuals, too.  Also, I agree: PIXELSEED is the man.

Remy:  PIXELSEED wasn’t there in person, but he very generously puts his work out there to be used by artists, which is very respectable.  I want to say there was one more, too, but the person eludes me.

Hoodie:  Part of what makes chiptune live shows so damn immersive is the excellent visualizations that accompany the music.  And that was there 110% at BRK, for *DAMN* sure!!

Kuma:  Seriously, that timing of Glenn’s pneumonia was unfathomable to me, especially considering all the work and build up he was doing to get there with Lora and Remy!  I’m just glad you managed to make it down there, Remy! Although not without trouble, it seems.

Mama:  Remy’s Great Adventure!

the adventure of remi
Hoodie:  Man oh man, poor Remy’s Great Adventure indeed! XD   ANOTHER ALBUM TITLE!!!

Remy:  Hahaha, when you’re on a long trip like that it’s never smooth sailing.  datacats came through for me in a huge way and I can’t possibly thank him enough.  He’s a paragon of selflessness.  Hahahaha!  Yeah, it really seemed like the universe did NOT want me to go to BRK.

Hoodie:  TAKE THAT UNIVERSE!  You sure showed it!

Kuma:  Dood, at least Remy’s adventure ended happily, unlike Starpilot‘s “Tales Of Being Treated Like A Border Crossing Mexican!”.

Hoodie:  DAMN THAT.  I was *SO* pissed about that shit!!! -flips all the border dickbutts-

Remy:  I’ve got 99 problems and fascism is most of them.

Mama:  Hahaha!

Kuma:  All that spiritual ascension, and yet he himself couldn’t levitate past airport securitah.

star pilot live
Hoodie:  I was so looking forward to meeting him and catching him live too!!  Another time, though, I suppose.  Regardless, he was definitely missed at BRK.  What a bucketload of rotten dickbutts, man.  Ew.

Kuma:  Seriously: that was a load of bs ever heard any, and I work in a public hospital: bullshit is my dayjob.  That being said, you guys did manage to luck out with BSK!  I can’t believe he came all the way from Japan to play at BRK!

Mama:  He melted faces.

Hoodie:  NO KIDDING, MAN.  That… just… I DON’T EVEN

Kuma:  No…no you have to clarify this for me because that was one of the sets I unfortunately missed.

Mama:  I was thinking about crowd surfing up until that point, and then he made the energy in the room go SO HIGH.  I decided that I had to go up.

Kuma:  On a scale of 1 to Killer Instinct, how many faces did he melt!

Hoodie:  Outside of Ralp at Blip 2011, I haven’t had much exposure to Japanese chip (especially live). [writers note: Ralp is from Spain {Hoodie note: OOPS! :3} ].  In general, it has a completely different kind of energy/feel.  So frenetic & hyper & AWESOME.

Mama:  People talk about 4 to the floor, that man was all 8 out the GATE.  As in all 8 cylinders (Bran was looking at me askance from across the room)

Kuma:  D=

Remy:  BSK did Mario at a rave.

Hoodie:  Hahahahaha!


bsk breaking it down

Photo courtesy of Marjorie Becker (Chiptography).

Hoodie:  Even as awesome as he was, I can’t call it my favorite performance of BRK. Mostly because I’m not sure I *CAN* pick a favorite. Everything was SOOOO GOOOOOOD~  And that sounds generic & lame BUT GORRAMIT IT’S TRUE!!!!

Kuma:  No.   No I’m not giving you that excuse.  Serious question time!  Pick a favorite performance!

Hoodie:  I’M THINKING.

Kuma:  DO IT NOW!

Hoodie:  IT’S HARD.

Mama:  HNGGG!


Remy:  No, it really is true.  A lot of BRKFest consisted of once-in-a-lifetime performances, things you just COULD NOT miss.


Mama:  Can I do a top 3?

Kuma:  No.  While I believe all of you on how amazing these performances are, that doesn’t make you exempt from the question.

Hoodie:  Auxcide.

Something about his music that just *REALLY* resonates with me. And his energy live. Just… DAMN.

Auxcide chiptography

Photo courtesy of Marjorie Becker (Chiptography).

Kuma:  Nice.


Kuma:  Your turn rynamom!

Mama:  Since Bran picked Auxcide (and therefore our parental obligation is filled), I’m gonna probably pick SMILETRON, cuz of the feels.  I’m all about the feels.

Remy:  SMILETRON Plays the Feels

Hoodie:  Yeah.  He’d be my favorite for that reason.  I HAVE DIFFERENT FAVORITES FOR DIFFERENT REASONS.  SUCK ON IT.

Kuma:  Remy, that’s a bad album cover waiting to happen, no matter how true it is.  Btw, it’s your turn!

Hoodie:  C’mon Remy.  Man up.  CHOOSE.

Remy:  I really wish I could back my way out of this, hahaha.

Hoodie:  NOPE.  Time for you to pick and have that pick made public for all the world to see.

Kuma:  Here, I’ll help.  Of the performances I did see, I think the one I liked most was andaruGO!  Andrew’s a sweet heart and I love his energy on stage. I just wish he played MACHINDER during his set.  Other than that, he pretty much played his new album live before releasing it was awesome

Hoodie:  HE WAS AWESOME.  His energy was NUTS!!!!  But that’s andaruGO for you hahaha!  Meeting him was great, too.  Meeting *EVERYONE* was so damn great!!!

And yeah, it’s (his new album) gonna be KILLER.

Kuma:  Nice.  Okay, Remy: it’s your turn.

Remy:  I would say Solarbear, because his performance drove home the fact that, holy shit, I was at BRK.  It happened.  How, I do not know.  Plus east coast chip is just so much better than west coast.  Really, I don’t know what meds people are on to think otherwise.

Mama:  Oh jeez

Kuma:  Very true.  On all accounts. Besides, its not like crashfaster is worth half the music they make.  (just kidding, I love Morgan and crew.)

Mama:  DON’T TALK BAD ABOUT MY CRASHFASTER!  Long live chip with words!

Hoodie:  Other favorites: Roboctopus really got me dancing, an0va was amazeballs (my first time to see *JUST* him live vs. w/ Cheap Dinosaurs), SMILETRON (again), Protoflight (he’s 15!!!), SSD Engage (I EXPLODED WHEN THEY PLAYED 1973!!!), shanebro, & Trey Frey.  And everyone else. Because yeah.


Remy:  Yeah, I’ll probably take a lot of flak for joking about east/west chip but whatever. Solarbear is ok.  He doesn’t drag us down TOO much.

Hoodie:  …I missed Solarbear’s set…. ;___;

Mama:  I’d like to tip my proverbial hat to Protoflight. Cuz he’s only 15 and ohmigosh he was amazing.

Remy:  Yeah, Yung Cunni’s got mad skillz

Hoodie:  But then again, SOLARBEAR SUX SO WHO CARES.

Kuma:  Dood that preshow!  I feel like the Datathrash crew doesn’t get the love they deserve! how was that?  Did EGR himself play?

ERG datathrash

Photo courtesy Marjorie Becker (Chiptography).

Hoodie:  IT WAS GREAT!!! Having to get up early enough to be there at noon after night one was kinda rough, though.  hahah Coffee shop across the road saved the day once again.  What was that one random band with the drummer that I’d never heard of before (that played the preshow)?

Mama:  Sludge Metal Ice Cream Truck.

Hoodie:  SLUDGE METAL ICE CREAM TRUCK!!  They were badass!!

The hour long open mic they (The Preshow) opened with was pretty sweet too!

Kuma:  I think that’s the most badass name I’eve ever heard for anything ever

Hoodie:  hahaha Yeah, they had me on name alone.

Remy:  The Datathrash show kicked off pretty early and was less hyped comparably but I can guarantee you that everyone gave 100% up there.  Whether you’re playing to ten people or one hundred in that capacity is irrelevant, everyone who took that stage was impressive in their own right.

Hoodie:  ^ THAT.  Remy busted out a couple of jams on the spot for the open mic, too.  IT WAS AWESOME.

Remy:  Plus, The Dutchess’ tore the fucking roof down with his Wish cover, and that was with about twenty people around the stage.


Kuma:  And that’s the thing I love most about chip: no matter what the skill level, everyone gives what they can and everyone supports with all their heart in return. I love it.  Also, yeah, Glenn Bauer busts out some crazy stuff!  But that’s what happens when you make music around guys like an0va and skgb!

Hoodie:  Haha GOOD POINT.

Remy:  Nothing but love for Philly chip.

Hoodie:  Introducing Dobbins (and a handful of others) to the majesty that is Sam Adams Cherry Wheat on the final night was a highlight, as well.  I apologize to all of you in advance for the alcoholism this is sure to cause.  And props to one of my roomies, Jason Doss aka Square Therapy for bringing that!  Prevented me from being sad once I discovered they didn’t have it at the bar.

Remy:  Pff, you can’t get drunk off Cherry Wheat.

Mama:  Yes you can, I’ve seen it.

Hoodie:  OH YES YOU CAN.

Remy:  Grow a liver.

Kuma:  I think Hoodie’s liver is specifically designed to get drunk off cherry wheat

Remy:  Hahahahaha!

Mama:  And Jason brought goodies from Starbucks! Breakfast bar because of him.

Hoodie:  TRUTH.

Kuma:  But to be fair, a lot of us got drunk off poor man anger juice at blip and you don’t see us complaining.  “Poor man’s anger juice” being Pabst Blue Ribbon.

pabst blue ribbon

Hoodie:  POOR MAN ANGER JUICE LOLOLOLOL!  THOSE WERE ON SPECIAL AT THE BAR.  I drank a few.  They’re still fucking awful.

And Dustin, well… he didn’t really bring anything except himself.  BUT THAT’S OKAY. *BUTT*DAAAAAAAAAAAAAAWG~  hahahhahahhahha!

Kuma:  Wait, what about his sax?

Hoodie:  No, he forgot.  NEXT TIME.

Kuma:  Oh, that sucks.  But yeah, Pabst is terrible.  Glenntai and I came to the conclusion that Pabst is armpit juice, cause that’s exactly what it smells like

Remy:  At Blip ’12, 99% of us paid 1% prices for 5% alcohol by volume

Hoodie:  Seriously: good beer has ruined my ability to drink shittastic lager.  At least until I run out of money, and then I can still destroy some Bud Light. XD

Kuma:  Oh man Bud Light!  I can’t remember the last time I had a beer that wasn’t Pabst, a Sam Adams specialty flavor or Brooklyn brewery!  Fuck, now I gotta pick some up!

Mama:  Beer is gross. I found some amazing ginger ale at the bar.  And made it “special” for myself.

Remy:  Hoodie showed me some good picks at Al’s, too. He’s very adventurous with his beer drinking.

hoodie and his beerHoodie:  Yeah, I’m all about tastier brews nowadays. Cheap shitty lager still works in a pinch, though.

Remy:  Beer is SO gross. Fuckin’ love it.



Hoodie:  There were a few local brews that were tasty, but I think that Country Boy Cougar Bait was my fav.

Mama:  I had some peach gin, one of the tiny bottles, and I put it in a big glass of that Ale 8-1. It was divine.

Remy:  The Cougar Bait was hella rad.

Hoodie:  And those nachos.

Mama:  Went great with my bison burger with balsamic and grilled green apples.  The nachos!  Home made tortilla chips!

Hoodie:  Fuck me, man!  If we lived in Lexington, I’m pretty sure we’d all be going to Al’s to grab nachos and beer after this interview. hahahaha!

Remy:  Not even kidding, I could live in that bar.

Mama:  We three would have a booth.  It would have our name on it!

Hoodie:  I mean, seriously, that’s one of those joints that makes a place worth living at. haha!

Remy:  Fuck it Hoodie, let’s just do it anyway.  Let’s go right now.

Remy:  LET’S GO.

Kuma:  Remy, you had Institute tots: how do those nachos compare to loaded tots?

the institute tots

Remy:  Damn, that’s a hard question.  I would have to say the nachos win this round but I’m gonna have to eat that Institute jawn again, doe.

Hoodie:  Yeah, I’m definitely going to have to eat something after this interview. XD  I miss Al’s.

Kuma:  Same, man. I might go to the Mexican spot down the street and get some nachos, myself.

Hoodie:  I think it’s a testament to Al’s greatness that we’ve spent about as much time talking about the bar as we have BRKFest. hahahhaa

Remy:  Spot on, Brandon.


Kuma:  That being said, BRK sounds like it was incredible in every single way imaginable. So now I gotta ask: what’s next for you guys?

Hoodie:  GOOD TIMES.  Also *VERY* nice to have a chiptune festival that’s in driving distance of where I live. hahaha

Mama:  Next adventure is Nerdapalooza!  Or is it Nashville, Bran?

Hoodie:  Working with some folk on a few smaller local shows, but nothing quite like BRK yet.  NASHVILLE.  That’s one of the shows. hahaha

Mama: Yay! Only 4 hours!

Kuma:  Wait, wait hold up for a second.  Nashville…you wouldn’t be talking about the first of the semi regular show series Roboctopus is looking to host out there, would you?

Hoodie:  YUP!  THAT’S THE ONE!


Hoodie:  He, I, Arnie of Datathrash and a few other cool dudes are making this a thing.  It’s taken awhile (we’ve been brainstorming it since earlier this year??), but it’s gonna be worth it. I’m already sure of that.

Kuma:  YES!  You guys totally need it to be a thing! The Midwest suffers of terrible under representation!  I know kloudygirl tried to do street busks and such in Texas and a few others tried to do the same here and there, but damn you guys need an 8static.

Mama:  Yes it does!  And we’ve got really talented folks in this region.


Kuma:  I’m so glad this is finally happening for you guys

Hoodie:  With a little time and effort and WORK, maybe this’ll turn into that.  Time will tell.

Kuma:  I hope so.  Even if its not strictly chip, I know you guys can make something wonderful happen there…as long as you have Amanda Lepre doing everything…which she’s already doing, so it’s gonna be a okay.

amanda lepre

Hoodie:  HAHAHAHAHA!  Her and Danimal do indeed do *ALL THE THINGS*.

Remy:   Yeah, no kidding.

Hoodie: I do enough of the things.  That’s good enough for me.

Kuma:  Seriously. I love what I do in the scene, but I can’t do what they do, let alone what you do, and god help me if I try to do what Kilpatrick does, cause I dunno how he does it.

andrew kilpatrick

Mama:  AK is cray cray

Hoodie:  Fuck that guy. He’s an asshole. ♥

Kuma:  I only know one asshole in this scene, and just like Bigfoot, his existence is questionable at best.

Mama:  ^Thats how Brandon expresses his man-love.

Hoodie:  I put a ♥ after that statement. That clears it all up.

Mama:  Of course, sweetie

Kuma:  What about you, Remy?  What can we expect of you in the next few months?  Same for you, Erin.  I know you and Bran are joined at the hip, but can we expect more Ryn vox?  Also, when can I expect mah cookehs?

Remy:  It’s always up in the air, man.  I never know what events I’ll make it out to or when I’ll have a release so I try not to make a big deal out of anything.

Hoodie:  DEFINITELY!  She’s in the midst of working on some more collab goodness as we speak!  As far as cookies, that’s up to her.  I try to eat all of those I can.  Y’all can get your own damn cookies!!!

Mama:  There is more Ryn vox in the works!  Princesses in Another Castle is working on getting a few songs together, and I’m in the early stages of a 5 track EP in collaboration with NickelPUNK. I’m super excited

Kuma:  Eh its all good, Remy.  I know nothing’s set in stone but it makes me happy that you’re doing your thing. And more Ryn vocals yay!

Remy:  I’m just keeping relaxed and focusing on having some modicum of output. I’m not going to release a Teaching Machine or an Information Chase my first time around and that’s okay.

Kuma:  Like wise: I don’t expect any EP I put out to sound amzing, but I’m happy my newer stuff sounds a little more Decktonic as of late.  I think that about wraps up everything here.  Thanks a lot guys!  This was fun!  We should definitely do it again!

Mama:  Thank YOU. I hope you can make something coherent out of our rambling

Kuma:  Oh, I definitely will

Remy:  If you put an egg in your shoe and beat it, it’ll glue everything right back together.

Hoodie:  Thank you! This was pretty damn fun!  Next BRK? YOU BETTER BE THERE!

Thanks for tuning for this special edition of RC!  Don’t forget to follow BRKFest on Facebook to keep up with the lastest shenanigans, as well as updates on media uploads pertaining to it!  Special Thanks go out to Hoodie, Ryn and Remy for this interview, as well as the many numerous artists who contributed to BRKFest, to Clipstream for making this a global experience for those who couldn’t make it in person, and to Chiptography for use of her immaculate photos in this article, as well as generally continuing to chronograph the awesomeness that is the chiptune scene!  Peace!


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