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herr_professor on 06/01/2010 at 11:24AM

Death is Dead

It is perhaps a sign of the times that a movement, or style, or whatever, isn't really established until someone declares it is over. It has happened a few times before in the chip music world but it didn't always result in such heated discussion as this post on the LSDJ mailing list. Other than being just another internet debate, it resulted in the Chip Music is Dead comp, released on the manifesterer's own netlabel Gainlad.

Considering the source post came on the LSDJ mailing list, it shouldn't be a surprise that most of the songs are LSDJ tracks made on a Nintendo Game Boy, but what was surprising is how many chip music heavyweights came forward with awesome and inventive songs. I have mentioned Overthruster, Starpause, and Bud Melvin, before on the FMA but there are also great tracks from Jellica, Nestroyer, and Gijs Gieskes .

So whilst you ponder whether it be dead or alive, enjoy the thirteen tracks above. and see you guys next week!

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herr_professor on 03/30/2010 at 10:25AM

Quitters Always Win

One of my favorite chip music shows I have ever attended.

With the spring weather remaining gross and profane, let's keep the recent trend of bastards of Game Boy noise going with a release from Timeheater. For fans of Starpause, and Overthruster (touring together and collaborating on tracks), Timeheater exploded on the East Coast Chip Music scene with numerous explosive performances, and countless (and extremely hard to find) releases.

He may have quit the Game Boy in 2006, but I emailed him for some information and can reveal to you the following nuggets:

- Originator of true chip till death
Well at least the name. The logo cracked me up so much, I usurped it for the title of our blog when we launched.

- Long format tracks
- Lots of feedback, distortion, dissonance
- Industrial electro, breaks, breakcore, noise.
His style is singular amongst most Game Boy performers, who tended to stay away from heavy complex sounds, one because its really hard to do, and two because most of them CANNOT TAKE IT.

- Along with overthruster worked heavily with nested tables and generative programming
You may not think a Game Boy is up to snuff in this category, but tracker technology allows for great variation in poly-rhythms, and generative programing

- Early adopter of gameboy advance sp due to crashes on older gameboys from processor load
This goes against the grain slightly with the general consensus that the oldest grey brick Game Boys have the "best sound" but most of Timeheater's tracks wouldn't even play on the older machines, as the nested table techniques are quite processor intensive. There is also the idea that the "harsher" sound of the SP's lends itself more to this style of music.

- not a fan of videogame music.

That much is apparent from this release, 1776. I've linked to the full version, so take a listen, and catch you guys next week.

Timeheater - "1776" (19:42)
Timeheater - "1776" (19:42)
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herr_professor on 03/02/2010 at 10:08AM


Along with Starpause, Overthruster was one of the most prolific of the the Minneapolis based lofi break-ish chip music assault group, :|krew. The group (pronounced COLON PIPE CREW) is one of the earliest US chip musicgroups to spring up in the early 2000's and their development, unchecked and Galapagos like in the wilds of the Twin Cities, owes a lot more to Punk, Breakcore, Bastard Noise and other types of harsh genres that you would not typically use to describe the sound that comes out of a Game Boy.

Overthruster has dozens of recordings on numerous lo-fi and no-fi Netlabels, and the tools he used to make these releases are equally diverse. His Game Boy material, showcased on his 2007 Dramacore release Slug Cock show a Game Boy that is far from interested in a nostalgic look back to one's childhood, and would rather focus on pushing the LSDJ tracker into its utmost limits, with harsh modulations, brutal hacked samples, and pulsing square percussion. Having always focused more on the noise and breakcore scenes, Overthruster is sadly not as well known in the chip community, especially amongst fans of the happier and poppier chipbreak artists like Saskrotch and Sabrepulse.

That's all for now, so enjoy Slug Cock and the rest of the Overthruster catalog elsewhere on the web, and see you guys in seven!

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