Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Chiptunes and Insomnia.

Happy Tuesday, oh nerdy world. I am sitting my bed thinking about how crappy I am going to feel come 9AM so I thought some casual musings would provide some beneficial distraction. I am not sure why I cannot fall asleep but why write about that when I can write about chiptunes. I have become a pretty big fan of chiptunes. It began with Anamanaguchi, probably the closest thing to main stream chip music, and now I search through blogs and bandcamps looking for the elusive chip musicians. Lucky for me this is not a very expensive way to spend my time as most people putting up their experimental music on Bandcamp are kind enough to throw on the name your own price button. I am not rich, but I can certainly shell out a couple of bucks to own a copy of someone's art, and I always do.
My most recent download was an album entitled "Get Olde" by what seems to be a new group going by the name Crying. I found them through a post by the Tiny Cartridge blog and after the first listen I was sold. While the music itself seem pretty straightforward for chiptunes (i.e. super awesome), the thing that caught my interest was the inclusion of vocals. Singers are a rarity among chiptunes, and given the nature of the genre it might make sense to exclude vocals. However, Crying's laid back vocal delivery on top of the chirps and beeps add up to a very nice package. Songs feel more like songs rather than monotonous repetition. The songs are poppy, but have a strong humanity to them. This really shines through on "Vacation". Give Crying a listen, they are hopefully part of a trend that will combine the musicality of chiptunes with lyrical expression. Also, here are links to their various social media outlets.


On a side note, the elusive fake radio show Holographic Charizard may be beginning soon, Caleb and I just need to get our crap in order.


Saturday, September 21, 2013

Anticipation Will Be The Death of Me

The release date for Pokemon X and Y is but three short weeks away. This less than a month span seems manageable, but I have found that everyday I am not exploring the Kalos region with a Chespin and a Squirtle is day of complete and total sadness. While X and Y, like all Pokemon releases, are very exciting, there is a different feel to this release when compared to previous Pokemon installments. It took a small amount of talking about it with my friend and Pokemon Professor, Josh, to determine that what really separates X and Y from previous generations is the mystery.

When Black and White came out, I knew so much about the games that my first run through felt like my second time. I had a plan, I knew the gym leaders, I knew what all the Pokemon looked like and their types. This was due to the fact that they were released in Japan six months before their North American release. All the info I wanted was out there from people who could translate Japanese. However, X and Y symbolize a major shift in the Pokemon marketing campaign. October 12 isn't just the release date for North America, it is the official global release date. This means that the world will only be behind Japan for a few hours (depending on release times in stores). This has radically changed how American consumers receive Pokemon updates and info leaks. We have as much information as the Japanese consumers, which isn't that much considering the size of these games. How exciting is that? For the first time since I played Red and Blue, I will not have significant prior knowledge of these games.

It may be silly to put emphasis on the unknown of a game, there is always the off chance that it's bad. But I think it has added to my experience, and I haven't even played the demo that has been making the rounds at conventions. I want to recapture some of the mystery and excitement of my first Pokemon experience, who wouldn't?