‘Stardust’ (released through ‘Madmilky Records’) is the latest album from musician ‘Skybox’ (formerly ‘Shoujo Kiss‘) and has been creating chiptune music for the over 3 years. Hailing from Kansas City, Skybox’s weapon of choice is the lowly Game Boy, relying on LSDJ to produce love stricken powerpop songs. Here’s the synopsis of ‘Stardust’ and a good look at some of tracks off the album.
‘Warez Waldo’ is an artist who mainly specialises in 16bit chipmusic. Dabbling in a variety different technologies, from MS-DOS PCs to Commodore 64s, Warez Waldo’s main aspiration is to create music which throws back to the Soundblaster 16 music, such as Sam & Max and Duke Nukem.
Hey, everybody! Welcome back to Quick Shots: the album review column in which I break down a handful of new EPs, then give a quick and dirty TL;DR to help you determine if a record is worth your time. This time around, I have two unique albums that are miles apart in terms of style and country of origin. While one is the product of several artists uniting to produce something truly bombastic, the other is a culmination of a single person’s ambition to pay homage to the medium he holds so dearly. So let’s not dilly dally any longer. Sit back, relax, and indulge with me as I dissect work by presented by the world renowned Japanese chiptune & breakbeat label OthermanRecords and Canadian newcomer HOFFMAN_IV.
I’m willing to wager that there is no city as equally saturated with chiptune projects as Meriden, Connecticut. This is, of course, all thanks to the massive output of one man – his name is Carl Peczynski, although you might know him as Radlib, or Oxygenstar, or maybe Steady C or sadNES or one of his other aliases. Carl is, to me, the great unsung hero of American chiptunes – I’ve yet to meet someone who is more than casually into chiptunes who doesn’t know at least one of his acts, and although he only does a few shows a year, he’s managed to stay relevant. Is it his many personae that are allowing him to meet the changing demands of the scene, never falling into a the trap of making the same thing over and over? Is it because he specializes in gear that often goes unused by others in the world of chiptune? Is it his love of early 90’s hiphop? Honestly, it doesn’t matter – because regardless of the origin of his powers, Carl’s music slays. I had the pleasure of chatting with Carl not too long ago, and the following are the fruits of that interview.
A rare picture of Carl without a backwards baseball cap.
As I first came to know of Toni through ‘Chiptunes = WIN: Volume 3‘, his first impression was a lasting one. I can count at least on 50 different occasions showing that track specifically to friends (who were really never too keen on electronic music in general) that there’s a lot that can be done in the genre. While most just turn towards popular artists and whatever is blaring on the radio, it’s amazing what you can find with just a little research. Now, being a part of this community, I guess it eases the amount of sifting through unpleasant tracks because, by and large, this place is filled with talented musicians and amazing composers. We come here to hear new tunes but we stay for the wealth of knowledge that gets passed around. Now then, ladies and gentlemen, I present Toni Leys.
With a cover like that, you can tell at least one of two things.