As some of y’all may well know about me by now, I’m a huge fan of spaghetti western movies. Some of my favorite childhood memories involve watching these iconic films with my Dad or one of my Grandfathers. That said, while I sincerely love the flicks themselves, it’s their soundtracks that gripped and inspired me more than anything else, with Ennio Morricone ranking foremost in my mind among their composers.
That makes it all the more fitting that, today, on Mr. Morricone’s birthday, I’m announcing our latest themed compilation influenced by that very style!
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.
Floating through nebulae and flying through space are typically associated with a sense of excitement and discovery, perhaps a sense of wonderment concerning what kind of life may lie beyond our own limited scope. ‘The Signal’, an album written by demoscene and horror movie score-writing veteran Wojciech Golczewski of Poland, provides a stark contrast to the optimistic ventures of aspiring astronauts. It paints a picture that evokes enigmatic and frightful visions of the cold and desolate void that is our universe, interspersed with brief, touching moments of optimism. Before we head off on our excursion, do note that this is an atmospheric, ambient album; this is best listened to in one sitting, preferably in the dark, in order to better experience this artist’s vision. Now, come. The signal beckons us.
Sup y’all? =) It’s the middle of the month so it’s time for another Hoodie Highlights interview! Today, I’m sharing a chat with another overly talented good friend that I’ve known since before any of this craziness started. And the dude is leveling up his achievements from gig to gig! Definitely a dude to watch out for in the coming years. Welcome to the blog Jameson Sutton aka Jogurt! Enjoy!
It’s a pretty beautiful thing when you find a new, gorgeous, and nostalgic game that’s got an equally gorgeous soundtrack to match. West coast composer and artist, Bill Kiley, has teamed up with artist and developer, Ryan Carag (who goes under the alias of Raiyumi) to create two games: The Valley Rule and A Kitty Dream. Both games use two different approaches to create a unique package of visuals and audio: surreal and eerie concepts of exploring a dream world for one and being trapped levels below life for the other, both containing atmospheric pads and sound design teamed up with chip sounds in complimentary ways.
Above is Raiyumi’s artwork of both games — the top displays graphics from ‘The Valley Rule’, and the bottom displays ‘A Kitty Dream.’
Previously on the ChipWIN 51 artist writeup, you got to read a little about 4mat; always a pleasant experience, second only to listening to 4mat of course. ;) Today… eh, think I’ma let someone else awesome handle this fantastic write-up. TAKE IT AWAY, AutoRemi PK!!! (hey! that rhymed! ;3 ). ;D
So here we all are at track #4, where we shift gears into some serious zen. No joke. This here’s a Chiptunes = WIN exclusive, and a damn fine one at that:
The moment Wake hit my ears, I knew this song was going to be powerful. Many will agree that this particular track takes home a prize for being one of the most beautiful contributions to the album. In a compilation with so many standout tracks, that’s no small feat. Simply put, Daniel Capo delivers the goods.
Of course, Daniel Capo has already released one of this year’s must-have chiptune albums in the form of O.S.T., an album made in tribute to classic NES games but with additional elements intended to provide increased depth and musical development to the songs.
That same approach is present in Wake, but it’s very clear his intent is not to emulate past success.
In Daniel’s own words, “After my last album, which was essentially a video game soundtrack, I wanted to do something very different. I was striving to do something much more atmospheric than before, but still capture a lot of movement underneath. To add to the atmospheric nature of the piece, I added some record noise samples throughout to give a nice ambience. There is also a nice smooth synth lead that I modeled myself in Max MSP. The title Wake comes from the way the piece sort of bubbles to life.”
Needless to say, mission accomplished. Wake is a deeply introspective and meditative composition, with mesmerizing ambience that builds throughout. But if you’re not sated by this great piece (seriously?!?), check out O.S.T. for ultra-fine tracks such as this funky beast:
You feeling that dark city-of-the-dead kind of vibe? The whole album’s a fantastic voyage and a credit to the way Daniel Capo is able to take a concept and spin it into a song that resonates with the listener. His contribution to the Chiptunes = WIN is no exception and by fortune, segues wonderfully into the next track:Can’t Stop Us, by Chipzel. PURE WIN.