A tune you should listen to: Tokyo Elvis – The Look

Sometimes when you’re going through to find new music, you find the weirdest stuff, that shouldn’t work, but definitely does.

This is what happened with my new love of Tokyo Elvis, who has found a way to use the style of Nintendo’s Super Mario & Animal Crossing, mash it up with Trap & Electronica, and make it sound so awesome! So many different influences from VGM to J-Pop & Glofi can be heard not just this song, but his whole music.

Recently I’ve been hearing a lot of glofi music, from such brilliants artists as Timid Soul & Bo en. It’s quickly gaining traction as another cool movement, like there’s been with Chiptune & Seapunk. Keep eye on music like this, because I’ve got a feeling it’ll get bigger!

Check out Tokyo Elvis’ Soundcloud Here!
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Villainest – A good day to try hard

A while ago Anamanaguchi blew people away by fusing rock music with chiptune. Since then they have inspired many other bands to do the same, redefining chiprock even further, with Melt Channel, Slime Girls & Astroskeleton to name a few. Villainest are the latest band to come out to do the same, with their latest album, ‘A good day to try hard’.

Villainest are a sega mega drive-based party rock band starting up in 2013, Toronto Canada. Villainest’s style is combination of keytars, hard rock guitar & the square waves from the mega drive. ‘A good day to try hard’ is their 4th release and features 8 tracks, half of which are their sega mega drive counterparts.

We kick off with Villainest’s title track, ‘A good day to try hard,’ aptly inspired by the fifth instalment of Die Hard 5, which Villainest cites, coming with ‘critical acclaim’. The track starts slowly using shimmering noise resonating, along with squares sounds ringing out & the screeching vocals of guitarist, James Harding on the top. The intro is very atmospheric and creepy, building up to the the hook of the song, a real funky keytar lead. It really reminds me of Egyptian styles that have been used in films such as, Indiana Jones. ‘A good day to try hard’ really shows off what the band is made off, giving you a taste of the sega synth, guitar & keytar, as well as the unique crunchy, spooky style that Villainest have crafted.

‘The machine’ is another track is which is both atmospheric, mysterious & down right creepy, starting with punchy chords, drums & leads from the Sega Megadrive. It’s a nice intro to show what the megadrive’s FM synthis capable of. This is interrupted at 1.10 with blaring distortion & joint singing from the band; it’s harrowing, but oh so awesome. Off the entire EP, this is probably the most powerful song, featuring a truly strong chorus that is complimented by some energetic fills & and one face melting guitar solo. The machine really reminds me of Faith no more’s 90s song, Midlife Crisis, mostly down to its creepiness & powerful hooks throughout.

The final song, ‘Peach’, is completely different from it’s prior spooky tracks, as it’s more lighter, sticking to major chords & a bouncy beat, sequenced from the sega mega drive. The distorted spoken word lyrics really promote the style that Villainest were going for, as well as the funky short chorus that’s absolute treat to hear time & time again. Overall ‘Peach’ is an absolute blast to hear, with it’s style reminiscent of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs.

Another cracking EP to add to the best albums of 2016, Villainest’s ‘A good day to try’ hard features so many outstanding tracks, that you’ll find yourself quickly becoming a fan. Not only that. but to have every track re-done as a 16bit megadrive remix is an absolute want!

Check it out below in the track list!

 PICK SONGS: 

 Peach & The Machine 

 Villainest: 

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A tune to listen to: Rick Sakura – Kawaii Sneakers

This year I want to branch out into other areas of music, so what’s better than getting into some electronic J-pop. I recently found, Kawaii Sneakers, an outstanding track by Rick Sakura, whilst rummaging through Hype Machine for funky new music. Opening up with a rhythm of soft kicks, light claps & pops, it’s a relaxing, chilled out track, in which its melodies flow through so easily.

Both short & sweet it’s a fantastic track to bounce to, whilst taking a walk outside. Kawaii Sneakers is part of a bigger compilation on Fogpak, bandcamp: Pay what you want here!
Check out Rick Sakura’s music below:
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Chronowolf – Genesis

Seeing as we’ve finished with the top 2015 chiptune tracks, let’s finally go onto 2016, and to kick the year off we have the fantastic album, genesis from Chronowolf. Looking back over 2015, the hype had been slowing building for Chronowolf, primarily from being featured on the Chiptunes = Win compilation with his track, ‘Singularity.’

Originally from Syndney, Australia but now living in Washington D.C. Chronowolf creates his music using a mixture of vintage console music, whilst complimenting it with modern hardware. With latest album, ‘Genesis’, Chronowolf creates each track using a DAW with Cubase5 as well as a mixture of different plugins & VSTs. For the hardware, he used Texas Instruments TI99/4A Home computer as well as ATARI 1040STe samples Chronowolf had created years ago.

My first pick from ‘Genesis’, has to be ‘Hyperion’, which begins with a wet yet punchy bass, a sound that’s generally familiar with synthwave. Then at 0.15 it all kicks of with the strong, bright & punchy lead that Chronowolf taken a likening to for his style. You’ll hear it through out the album, especially in his prior track on last years Chipwin compilation. There are also a variety of different leads throughout the Hyperion, with only one being prevalent, the little fill which has the lead run up & down the scale. Hyperion is a high octane song which really defines what Chronowolf’s music is ultimately about.

My next pick is ‘The Dry Run (Cry Wolf)’, namely down to its absolutely killer robotic rhythm going on through out. This track is immediately a stand out track from the terminal speaking software for the Texas instruments computer, to the legato bass that kindly let’s us know that the sound of the 80s hasn’t left us. It gives the feeling as if it’s an exercise run going on, with the voice going through the verses, leads & even the choruses.

I must say even though this is mixture of chiptune against classic music, I’ve been finding myself listening to the electronic tracks, rather than more classical ones. However ‘The Last River’ is one such song, which works fantastically with its strong classical style, weaving wonderfully amongst the electronic instruments. Together they create an extremely chilled solemn atmosphere and rivals the majority of tracks on Genesis.

Overall ‘Genesis’ is a nice blend of classical music against the chiptune we love so much. This is also Chronowolf’s first ever album! It really shows that anyone who wishes to get into chiptune by putting the time & effort can create one fantastic album and show their style. I’ll be keeping an eye on Chronowolf in the late future.

PICK SONG:

THE DRY RUN (CRY WOLF)



Chronowolf:

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