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Archive for June, 2007

Arm Cannon

Monday, June 25th, 2007

Arm Cannon is a group of progressive mathematical metal maniacs tirelessly reinterpreting your favorite videogame ballads of the past, and making them fresh again. Instead of the bleeps which originally emanated from your television Armcannon has transformed this music into thick metal rifs and cascading keyboard scales.

Main Site

goto80 talks with

Monday, June 25th, 2007

For this installment of the “geek of the week” I had the opportunity to ask Goto80 a few questions. I tried to keep the questions as open as possible so those looking for information gearding on how to make chiptune music could get a little help. Better to learn from one of the masters, than to go at it alone.

First go to his myspace page here and load the page. That way you can have some background music while you read:)

NerdArts:What software/hardware do you use in composing your pieces?

Goto80:Mainly JCH’s Newplayer for C64, Protracker for Amiga, Renoise for PC and LSDJ for Gameboy.

NerdArts:What was the piece of hardware/software which got you interested in creating chipmusic?

Goto80:I started making music on the Amiga, but more sort of non-bleepy styles and more like slammer-trash-rave-acid. Then I got into making chiptunes on the Amiga, as the chipmod-songs were extremely popular in the Amiga demoscene. A few years later, I realized that the C64 was what I needed to get that nice mix of digital and analogue - pure and dirty.

NerdArts:Advice for those who are starting out. What would you say are the absolute basics that someone would need to start making chipmusic?

Goto80:Well as far as chipmusic in general, there are no basics because there are so many different ways of doing it. If you are gonna get into the purist chiptune stuff - using only old computers, etc, then I guess you need to know how a tracker works, which mostly also means understanding that there’s a hexadecimal number system. (instead of just 0-9 there’s 0-9 and A-f .. eh, google it) You’d probably want to learn how to transfer files between your lamer-computer and your cool-computer. Anyway - I still believe that trackers are extremely fast and easy to use, just takes a bit of time in the beginning. To get into the idea of tracking, you might want to try Renoise for Mac/PC because it’s pretty similar to oldschool trackers only now you can use VST-thingies and blabla.

Personally, I think there’s a beauty and a point of using an old computer for music making. Without getting very detailed or pretentious, I believe that using these old machines and programs make you create music that you wouldn’t create with anything else. It has unique features and for me a very special feel to it, which can never be simulated or emulated by anything else. The SID-chip of the Commodore 64, with its bugs and unpredictable noises, is like a beast that cannot be tamed. I’ve started writing a little guide about making C64-music here:

NerdArts:How do you feel about chipmusic becoming more popular? Do you think it has a chance to go mainstream? What’s the current scene like in Sweeden?

Goto80:A lot of people think that the chipmusic scene in Sweden is very big and it is true that there’s many people that know about it. But I think that it’s the same as with other non-mega-mainstream-music scenes in Sweden - there’s a lot of people making it, but there’s not a good live music culture in our country. Chip music has already been heard in mainstream music such as Timbaland, Beck, Malcolm McLaren, etc. Using old computers to make music fits well with current trends of DIY and “obsolote” equipment and in a sense that novelty perspective of it is already mainstream, mysteriously formulated by journalists and thinkers. Anyway - as chip music gets more attention in mainstream forums that means more people get into it. The good thing is that all these non-demoscene-nerds that’s been getting into it since the year 2000 bring alot of fresh ideas into the music. Early on you might get the feeling that “the others” don’t understand “our” scene and blablabla, but personally I’ve dropped that perspective. :)

NerdArts:Were you classically trained in music or self taught? How has musical structure effected your pieces?

Goto80:I’m self taught and used to have a strong disbelief in rules and theory about music. But I started getting a bit more interested in theories and “models” of music which made me realize new ways of breaking them. :) I’m not all that convinced anymore that a single individual independently can be inventive all through his or her life, and there’s alot of people whose music (or art, or whatever) I would appreciate more if they would be more “conscious” in their breaking of rules. Hm, or something. But I guess that’s very non-trendy and conservative to say, hehe.

NerdArts:Future plans, projects, tours?

Goto80:I’ll be going on a European tour in August and a little tour in Israel in October. I’ll keep doing one free MP3-release every month and also I’m working on a CD-album. I will also do music for some incredibly fresh C64-releases, all released at the Big Floppy People party in Sweden in July. I’ll have an article published about chip music next year, in Kate Collins‘ book “From Pac Man to Pop Music” and I hope to be able to spread some more interesting ideas about chip music than just the “hacking videogames retro bleep yeah funny”-thing. Chip music does (still) have a somewhat unique styles when it comes to composing and distributing, and I think that needs to be said. So I hope I can do more talks in the future about this.

Ma Jun

Sunday, June 24th, 2007

Damn. These are some absolutely amaxing pieces. Ma Jun makes ceramic televsions.


Manhunt 2 banned in the UK

Saturday, June 23rd, 2007

Watch Trailer for Manhunt 2
“But the problem is not with the games, films and music that replicate and fetishize violence, it’s at the core of the common modern condition. Excessively violent societies are caused by apathy, by a political system that discourages action and involvement, by a post-Thatcherite asocial attitude that says there are no ties between you and the people you live near and interact with, by schools that, with under-funding and a weary workforce, cannot instill a sense of shared values in their students, by the slow destruction of the family unit, by over-worked and complacent parents, by a empty consumerist ideology that says everything’s a commodity and you don’t have to actually believe in anything anymore, by a high availability of guns and other weapons, by economic deprivation and social immobility that force the use of gangs and violence to get ahead in life. This is a culture that often breeds alienated, apathetic, bored individuals, with few values and litte respect for those around them.”
Link to Full Editorial

Free Nerdcore Hip Hop for Download

Saturday, June 23rd, 2007

Download the Rocket Propelled Geeks new album for free from their website.

Nintendo Papercraft

Friday, June 22nd, 2007

A great archive of Papercraft of your favorite Nintendo charcters can be found here.

New Video Games Entertain and Educate

Friday, June 22nd, 2007

New Video Games Entertain and Educate
From Npr

Talk of the Nation, June 21, 2007 · Today’s video games are moving beyond violence and sports. New games provide chances to play middle-east peacemaker or solve problems regarding immigration or food safety. Ian Bogost, creator of these games, discusses why he makes games that go beyond entertainment to education, advocacy and art.

Chiptune article from the guardian

Friday, June 22nd, 2007

Chiptunes with everything

Chris Salmon goes online to find fist-pumping funk and songs to make Mario really jump

Friday June 1, 2007
The Guardian

‘Today it’s raining,” sings Manu Chao 26 times on his new single, available free from to promote his upcoming album. Could the song’s lyrical refrain be inspired by a bank holiday weekend spent in an English seaside town? The title, Rainin in Paradize, would imply not. Besides, Chao has bigger lyrical fish to fry, with the rest of the song concerning conflict, catastrophe and hypocrisy in Congo, Liberia, the Middle East and Iraq.

Nerdcore Hip Hop in Mainstream news.

Friday, June 22nd, 2007

Nerd pride
BY SONYA SORICH - Staff Writer –

NERD ALERT: Nerds have gone from reviled to revered in today’s culture, and one group at CSU is seizing the moment

Nerds are the new rock stars.

Or at least they’re treated like rock stars, maintains 21-year-old Samantha Lee Wallace of Columbus, whose boyfriend Matt Ballard is the founder and president of Campus Nerds at Columbus State University.

“People like the underdog because they are enjoyable to watch and nerds are by their very definition the underdogs,” Wallace said.

She added, “They (nerds) aren’t often the beautiful people or the ones with the most social graces, but they are who they are. They don’t hide.”

In Ballard’s company, Wallace has watched Campus Nerds grow from its beginning stages last September to a 100-member club that recently was named CSU’s organization of the year.

Ballard said a growing emphasis on nerd power has changed his social life dramatically. In March, his group hosted the first-ever NerdaCon, a local event that drew 1,300 attendees.

“I never grew up being popular and now my reputation precedes me,” Ballard, 22, said.

DJ Axel Mashup Madness

Friday, June 22nd, 2007

Check out DJ Axel’s great mashups, and better yet, you can download them for free :)