8 Easy Pieces

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The pitched fork has pronged another prize with the fantastic documentary, Reformat the Planet on the emerging Chiptune scene. Chiptune (as distinct from 8bit music per say) has been around for about a decade, and is finally garnering some critical acclaim. Not content with inventing punk music, Malcolm McLaren hopped on the bandwagon early, writing an hilarious piece for Wired in 2003 claiming the birth of a new scene, ‘Chipmusic’. In the article McLaren is escorted my mysterious French underground electronic musicians to a dingy factory where credibility and curry powder mix in malodorous clouds, and odd young hips with blackened teeth play unironic retro-future music on outdated consoles and computers. Since those halcyon days chiptune has conspicuously failed to set the world alight – though it has had an ‘influence’ on mainstream hiphop and indie acts, on underground scenes like nerdcore and laterly on art and fashion [1] [2]; ultimately achieving the honour of being featured in the latest issue of Analogue. Reformat the Planet is only available for four more days, so check it out!

Update: For an Irish take on 8bit, check out the hyperkinetic 0010100, who mercifully avoid the europop chinz of much euro chiptune.

Update 2: If you’re in the UK or can get your clogs on and hop on a ferry, there’s a Chiptune Alliance tour on right now in Scotland and England, featuring some of the artists featured in Reformat the Planet including Anamanaguchi, Sabrepulse, and Random.

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3 thoughts on “8 Easy Pieces

  1. @solipsistic NATION Is Chiptune really bigger in Europe than the US? Had no idea, all the coverage I’ve seen (including Reformat the Planet) implies it’s primarily a US / Japan scene.

  2. @admin You know, you could be right. When I put together my documentary on Chiptunes most of the artists I found in the scene came from Europe and as well as the Demo scene.Also, many people I interviewed from the US in the documentary noted that there’s a much bigger audience for Chiptune shows in Europe. Still, I plan to explore Japanese Chiptune artists in future shows.

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