Monday Mixed Bag: Impostor Nostalgia



HappiNESs (featuring Disasterpiece)

Your Quest Is Over (Featuring Pongball)

If there’s one thing this blog has been lacking lately, it’s been chiptunes. I don’t have a fetish for old games, but I do like retro video game soundtracks. It’s amazing how much they can express with such limited tools. How music that sounds like it was made with beeps and bops can bubble up so much emotion through more than just nostalgia. There’s something satisfactory about finding this music and learning about parts of gaming I know nothing about. I like sharing a song and someone telling me it’s probably inspired by a riff in Megaman or Sonic the Hedgehog.

Chiptunes represents unknown relics of the internet’s past. I have a very narrow field of view in video games because I stick to PC Gaming, but when I listen to chiptunes I feel like I’m exploring the underbelly of a dungeon or zipping past a nebula in space. They are things I can mostly identify, but there’s always something new to be uncovered and explained.

Someone mentioned that there’s been a recent bundle of games that are new but they represent the retro. I thought I’d do the same for music. Big Giant Circles released a mostly “name your price” mix of chiptunes with featured guests like C418 and Pongball. I’ve posted my three favorite. A nice mellow one that you will immediately associate with the beautiful, sunsetty sounds of adventure, a happy dragon killer and the echos of the end of your quest. Sorry baby, it has to end somewhere.


Filed under Electronic, Monday Mixed Bag, Music, SPPPAAACCEEE, Video Games

8 responses to “Monday Mixed Bag: Impostor Nostalgia

  1. X2Eliah

    Yeeeees. Totally just ordered, the first one alone pretty much sells it.
    Also, I am quite curious how this payment scheme will work out for these guys – obviously for games this has been a major success with all the bundles and stuff, but can such “pay-what-you-want” scheme work for a relatively unknown music album?

    Anyway, from a consumer point-of-view, you get to choose the file-type and quality of the songs + the price, so.. can’t really ask for more, imo.

    • This is how I understand it: usually new/unknown bands are going to give away free music anyway for publicity. They have to in order to get any love from blogs, soundcloud and bandcamp. If you make it “pay what you want” the people who REALLY dig it can support them with some extra bucks.

      Bandcamp is fucking Valve smart in that way. They make paying easier than pirating.

      • X2Eliah

        Truth. It’s all about how easy it is for me to hear the sound on my headphones. If you make buying more simple – and with more benefits – than doing anything else, ofc I’ll buy.

        Now someone please explain this to the big record labels :|

        P.S. One thing tho.. Iirc paypal takes some fixed cash per transaction for themselves – I hope nobody’s operating at a loss here (maybe that’s why there’s the minimum amount, so assholes can’t put in 0.01$).

    • X2Eliah

      Ok ok seriousface feedback after listening to everything in this pack.
      1) Dem’s good chiptunes, man. A lot of dubstep influence as well, for people whose knickers can be twisted by such things.
      2) The composition & mastering is pretty nice. On the whole, there were compression-artifacts on only two tracks (beginning of “you can have mine” and “BGC418”), the rest are perfectly clean. I guess it is easier to maximize these without clipping compared to, say, a live acoustic performance; either way, it’s really cool to not have to bear popping and ‘sparkling’ – that’s an all too common issue with most bandcamp-style flac downloads :|
      3) Holy crap you guys this is 17+3 tracks. Seriously. That’s a lot. That’s like 20 good songs. Which is more than 10. Or 12. Because it is 20.
      4) There’s not a lot of “dirty glitch” style of sound, most of this is very pure, present and clear. Might be a pro or a con, depending on what you want.
      5) The three tracks Mumbles has on here are good representatives of the album. Of the three, HappiNES is definitely the most “in-line” with all the other songs. So it’s not really a thing with “a few frontrunner tracks and the rest is filler”, you listen to these and you’ll know what you’ll be getting.
      6)This music not be chillax music. Very “driving” and energetic. :|

  2. It’s nice to hear NES sounds in chiptunes. Usually the Gameboy’s tones are more popular in that scene. Sort of like the prevalence of Commodore 64 sounds over more Amiga-like stuff.

    Still not much in the way of FM synths… bah. A man can dream. Or bother writing some himself.

  3. Klay F.

    Damnit Mumbles! You are making me spend all of my money on awesome music! :D

    Almost every post of yours last month had me buying something!

    Seriously though, its been a while since I’ve heard stuff this good.

    Off-topic: Are you going to SXSW this year? Rather, is ANYONE who reads this blog going? Near as I can tell, there won’t be anyone from the NY chiptunes scene performing, but there will still undoubtedly be some awesome groups there.

    • Klay F.

      The only song I don’t like is the twelfth song, Buzzsaw. It’s taken me all week to figure out why I don’t like it. The reason is because it reminds me of Opposites Attract by Paula Abdul. God that was a horrific song. I actually had to look up the damned thing to make sure I wasn’t crazy, and immediately hated myself afterwards.

  4. Pingback: Digital Mumbles: Check Out Some Stuff You’ve Heard Of | Digital Mumbles

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