Chip Bit Sid presents: A few Days at Superbyte!

Superbyte has gone from strength to strength within the space of a few years and has put Manchester on the Chiptune map. Superbyte began back in 2012 as a one day chiptune & retro gaming event, but has gone on to being a FOUR DAY extravaganza, bringing in huge chiptune artists from all over the world. Essentially Superbyte is the UK’s single biggest chiptune event. That’s huge points over London!

Before I start this review, I have made a video round up which can be found at the bottom.

Superbyte kicked itself off with the Warm up open stage on Thursday evening at Fab Cafe, Manchester. Initially the artists were, Auracle, HARLEYLIKESMUSIC, x Critical Strike x, Circuit Bird, Gasman, I am legendary Robot, HIA, KeFF, Nihilarc, SIX128 and Mykah. However some spots opened up and it brought forth other chiptuners with some fantastic sounds from the likes of Sky Pope, J3WEL, CFGK and Joe Bleeps!

It was a fantastic start to the Superbyte Festival, one which was only going to get better.

Next day was started off with a busking at Piccadilly Gardens, a chilled out beginning to Friday. This really got Superbyte in the spot light for some of the folk who had never heard of it. Onlookers gaped and gawked at what was happening. Some idiots jeered as they walked, but no one let it get to them. Even I did a spot of music, playing my first ever live set to everyone around!

Fast forward a few hours later and Superbyte is just getting started at Zoo Club. It began with the fantastic set from the lovely .Mpegasus, which featured his most recent songs as well as remix. This was followed up For Astronauts And Satelites playing a superb live set, using age old commodores, guitars and crisp drumming. FAAS were one band I was really looking forward and you’ll see my review of their latest album soon.
   
From on we saw Galaxy Wolf, who blew everyone away with probably the bassiest set I’d seen in Superbyte, by just using two consoles against each other. He was seriously electric, showing off some real energy and getting everyone dancing too. RoccoW did the same thing, but took one step further by taking off his shirt!!!
Henry Homesweet and JDDJ3J came on with their new super duo project, CYMBA, which brought forth some real GBA chiptune house. It was real smooth and layered what really made it was the visual effects from VJ Entter, as had the Pope putting his hands up for the beats. Things got proper cool!
 

Superbyte had already gotten vastly more awesome than 2014, but the real icing on the cake was Mega Ran, but this time bringing a guest called, Storyville. Mega Ran had been last year to Superbyte, 2015 showed that he’d definitely progressed further, pushing his new material from his latest Album. The live pairing with Storyville also was pretty cool, bringing something new to his already ultra cool live set.

After the estastic set from Mega Ran, Superbyte began to wind down, with brilliant sets from the likes of Monodeer, IAYD and finally a DJ set from Oliotronix.
Day 2 began with some educational lessons on how to play chipmusic from Ctrix, Joebleeps and Danimal Cannon, as well as lessons on how to play visuals with, Bitrituals and 2xAA.
The first artist to begin the 2nd day of chiptune, was the crazy King Wine showing off their chops, using bass, a gameboy and friggin’ ukulele! Trinity Lofi then came on to show off some melodic noodling, with Mr spastic coming on to compliment the rest very nicely!
However all exploded into action, Sweden’s Rymdkraft, showing off some real bouncy beats as well as playing a remix of Kyary Pamyu’s – PONPONPON. That was some definitely some real, serious, ‘off the wall’ shit right there.

(Here’s a link if you don’t what song, I’m talking about – here’s the link).

Jokes aside, it really got people dancing and in the mood for jumping up onto the the stage and going crazy which is what me and Mizkai did! 

Once Rymdkraft came off it was time for Infotoxin. This was hugely different in contrast to Rymdkraft’s set, being dark and very house (though still progressive in its own right).

Kenobit continued that style with some dark covers of metal songs such as Slayer and Metallica. It was pretty sweet as it got the majority to start a freakin’ mosh pit!

Ultrasyd provided some mind melting music in the form of the demoscene using some old school consoles. His set was pretty much one of the most stand out ones, however I’m pretty sure one of my ears died from the amount of bass coming out of the speakers (oh well)! But his set was awesome and was a great lead to up Danimal Cannon, someone who a lot of people had been waiting for.

Danimal was a great change from the hard hitting chip dub we’d been hearing, as he noodled around with an Ibanez Guitar, finger tapping without a care for the world. I especially loved the cheeky showmanship he had with his guitar (the guitar machine gun was fucking brilliant)!


Finally the live set I’d been waiting for since I fell in love with his music, the legendary Ctrix. I’d been a fan of the guys music since listening to A is for Amiga and wanted to be front row when it kicked off. Let’s just say expectations lined up with reality. Ctrix totally nailed it with his ‘SNES VS MEGADRIVE’ console war, playing some snes tunes whilst retorting with some tunes from megadrive. Both had some distinct unique sounds and it went down brilliantly. To wind the night down, Henry Homesweet placed his famous Essential chiptune DJ mix.


Superbyte 2015 completely blew my mind this year and though 2014 was epic, I think its safe to say that this year seriously beat it out right. There’s also a very personal atmosphere with superbyte, in which the artists feel more like friends than celebrities. I like this, as it gives them the option to hang out with everyone and talk about they enjoy. I met so many awesome people those past few days, you can tell chiptune is such a friendly scene with Superbyte is right at the centre of it.
Lastly, I’ve created a video which sums up all Superbyte through footage I took throughout my few days there. Enjoy!
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