Thursday, August 17, 2017

Gasman Presents: Zero to Chiptune in One Hour

Yeah, I know it's been pretty silent around here for a long time. The main reason is that I've been massively sucked in by a huge project I've been working on for the last 10 months, so other projects like this blog have been taking back seat. I'm nearly done with the big one now, so soon you can expect to see some more action around here again.

For now, here's something worth checking out. ZX Spectrum legend Matt Westcott (aka Gasman) gave this amazing presentation at the SHA2017 hacker conference. I'm pretty sure that as a reader of this blog you're well aware of the basics of chip music. But I bet you haven't seen anyone talk about it for an hour while at the same time composing an AY chiptune cover requested by the audience!

Monday, March 27, 2017

Introducing the ZX Egg Painter

Don't you just hate it when you get them fingers all dirty while trying to paint some eggs for Easter? Then rejoice with me, because Joachim and Ulrich from the German ZX-Team have developed a revolutionary device that will spare you all the hassle. Lo and behold: The ZX-Eiermaler (ZX Egg Painter), a Sinclair ZX-81-driven egg painting machine.

Thursday, March 2, 2017

[tool] Blackbird 1.0 by lft

Linus Åkesson aka lft has relased a new, native C64 tracker. Blackbird features a very clean and minimal GUI, an efficient playroutine, a live mode, and a unique microtonal fx system. It also comes with a well-written, in-depth manual and plenty of example tunes for further reference.


[album] winter songs by lpower

Pterodactyl Squad has released a beautifully melancholic and and soothingly moody collection of synth tracks by lpower. Not really chip at all, but certainly worth a listen. You are very much encouraged to buy the album on bandcamp, but if you want to grab it for free, you can do so on Pterodactyl's release page.

Saturday, February 25, 2017

[album] Balearic Beats vol 43 - Chipmusic sounds of summer

No, wait... don't scroll past this! Didn't your parents tell you not to judge a music album by its title? And hey, I'm on this one, too!

Still not convinced? Well, there's also tracks by Yerzmyey, Joss Manley, Hypnodrive, Comptroller, Cheapshot, Pulselooper, the Mist toggles, Mr. Spastic, Goto80, Jellica, Mister Beep, Rico Zerone, and Vince Kaichan! Yeah, I'm sure that now you'll give this a listen. And you should, because this is  the most relaxing, laid-back chiptune compilations in a long time. And as you can guess from the artist rooster, it's about as generic-balearic as a Himalaya expedition. Many thanks to Chippanze and Kittenrock for putting this together.

download 320kbps mp3

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

[demo] Belong by Mahoney

From the man who brought us such legendary productions as Storebror and Cubase64, here's a new, thoughtful and moody C64 4K intro. Not only is it one of the rare instances of a demo with a message, but it's unique visual style also sets it apart from the usual plasma-scroller-twister stuff. Music-wise, it reminds me of some works by Kjell Nordbø. It won the C64 4K compo at Datastorm, and I'm tempted to give this a CDC on pouet, actually.

download/discuss (pouet)

[album] Mobile Swarming by Chrome Cobra

Damn, I've been neglecting the blog for quite a bit again. All my free time goes into coding at the moment. Well, time to finally look back on some of the awesome stuff that appeared on the internetz lately.

First of all, we've got a fantastic new, step-heavy Gameboy release by Chrome Cobra (aka Doomcloud/Radlib/Oxygenstar/a-few-dozen-other-names). I'm always delighted to hear this kind of material - danceable and party-ready, yet dark, and far away from the usual Mario-at-a-rave tropes.

Friday, February 3, 2017

[album] Rare Collection by Shnabubula (available February 3rd only)

Today Bandcamp is taking action against Trump's immigration politics by donating their share of sales proceeds to the American Civil Liberties Union. Chip jazzer Shnabubula is joining the action by releasing a one-day exclusive album, which will be available only today, Friday the 3rd. Of course, he's donating his share to the ACLU as well.

I'm not embedding this because it'll be gone by tomorrow anyway. So if you read this in time, head over to Bandcamp to grab this bag of magic goodies and support the good cause.

Monday, January 30, 2017

[tool] Polyanna - New C64/SID Tracker with Virtual Polyphony

The legendary Aleksi Eeben has released a new tracker for the Commodore 64. Polyanna supports an astonishing 5 virtual channels on top of the SID's 3 regular ones. Unfortunately it works on old (6581) SIDs only. Nevertheless, I think this is a fantastic achievement. Folks at Demobit seemed to agree, since Polyanna took second place in the wild compo. Haven't tried the tracker myself yet, but the interface looks nice and clean, and knowing Mr. Eeben's work, I'm pretty sure usage will be rather intuitive.

CSDB release page

[demo] Don't mess with Texas by Desire

The Texas Instruments TI-99/4A ought to be one of the most underrated and underused demo platforms out there. Until now, there were hardly any prods for it, aside from a little intro by frog of realm of illusion, which ran at last year's Revision, and some small thingies like Asmusr's 2k15 new year greetings.

Well, the wait is over - Synchrony 2017 saw the release of a massive TI99/4A mega-demo. Props to Asmusr, jmph, orby, and Ramon B5 for an excellent show on this badly documented, ancient 16-bitter, and congratulations on 1st place in the demo compo.

download/discuss (be sure to read the extended notes)