The Finnish Wall Magazine interviewed me at the H2Ö-festival and it goes a little something like this!
Karen Collins has done tons of research on game and chipmusic. I published a chapter in her book From Pac Man to Pop Music many years ago. Now she’s making a documentary on game audio and looking for funding at Kickstarter.
It seems like this is the first documentary of its kind, and I think she’ll be able to do a great job. And it seems like I’m going to be interviewed for it too, along with all those titans of game music.
This video presentation of Olia Lialina’s Vernacular Web theory includes some snippets from Animal Romantics, aswell as from the current state of goto80.com. Both designed by Raquel Meyers. Also mentioned in the videos is the fact that goto80.com was listed at 1000$ pages in 2005. Ok yeäh!
The video was made by nomeat studio.
At the Finnish H2Ö-festival I was interviewed by the national public service news. And they included a little quote with me saying that there’s too much house and dubstep influence on chipmusic. Clearly a matter of national interest! Check the clip here while you can, around 9 minutes in.
Really great festival, don’t miss out next year! I only used Amiga and C64 this time, which I haven’t done for probably 10 years. Oh and btw, the same Finnish TV-channel will start hosting the teletext art museum MUTA in August.
There’s an interview at Ongaku where I reveal some of the thoughts and secrets with my latest album, Files in Space. The cassettes sold out quickly, but there’s more stuff coming soon. More about that later.
Meanwhile I prepare my new set for this weekend’s H2Ö in Turku, Finland. Lots and lots of Amiiiggaaa elekktrånikk foonkk!
I did two interviews recently, which made me think about old interviews I’ve made. Some quick searches made me realise how little of the old stuff is left out there in ze cyberspace. And here I thought that everything is accessible all the time on the internetz?! Hehe. Well, here’s some of the stuff I found:
Enough Records in May 2014. Music economy, netaudio, textmode and releases.
Illarterate, March 2014. Focus on text-mode graphics, especially teletext, and then talk about releases and stuff. And then that Wikipedia page..
Plaza+, 2010. About chipmusic as genre & process, and how I relate to that. About immersion rather than appropriation. Some critical words on critical uses of technology.
Indiegames, 2010. With Raquel Meyers in Tokyo.
Scenesat radio, 2010. Mostly scene-related.
Also some mentions:
HOLO 1, May 2014. This phat magazine have a feature on Raquel Meyers so lots of our work is shown and discussed. PETSCII, demos, teletext, motivations, etc.
Arnie Holder said: “For not-necessarily-music inspiration the work from Goto80, Nullsleep, Raquel Meyers, Jacob Remin, and all the projects and artists that surround them are the most fascinating art I’ve ever been exposed to. Cutting-edge got nothin’ on these peeps.”
A Swedish library magazine called Biblioteksbladet (since 1916, yo) mentioned my workshop on C64 music in its October issue. PDF It was in a tiny place called Eksjö, but managed to gather 25 youngsters to learn C64 defMON music!
Leonardo Electronic Almanac, Volume 19 Issue 3 featured an interview with Raquel Meyers about live visuals. She talked about some of the textmode performances and improvisations we’ve done together. Nice to see defMON and PETSCII in a place like that.
Boing Boing featured my post at Chipflip about hardcore chipmusic. That led to some new contacts to research 8-bit history with, which is always a good thing!
Chipflip was started in 2008 when I did research for a chapter on chipmusic for an academic book on video game music. The blog also has a timeline that contains mostly chipscene-related things but also art, demoscene, hacking, etc. Yeah, and it also works as a sort of music label.
Piratbyrån was a loosely organized group that exploded the discussion and practice of copyright in the 00s. Now there is a book about them, which was launched last weekend in in Copenhagen. It presents fragments of their activities, such as The Pirate Bay, the Kopimi “license” and 100000 other things.
I’m happy to be included in the book, since I performed at some of their parties like the Spectrial. The book was designed by Raquel Meyers and you can read more about the book at her site.
The Ferret Show is a musical that me, the Uwe Schenk Band and Raquel Meyers did. We released it as video and as MP3s at Upitup. Those MP3s were completely free for others to use (ie, it was not creative commons), so it was published as public domain at Free Music Archive.
It seems like that made it reach out to a lot of people who don’t normally hear my music. So there’s a pretty bizarre collection of YouTube clips that uses one of the songs from the Ferret Show:
A guy on a motorbike buying sushi ingredients, someone talking about customer service, duct tape artist documentary, instant art career, dinosaur comedy, unpacking pokemon, new zealand trans something, the game go, backseat gamer, video game sex, a machinima movie or sth, how to draw ASCII weapons, some kind of cartoon, an article about Brooklyn Circus style, and so on. And here’s even more:
OMG I won an award for my book – and it hasn’t even been released yet! The book is called Computer Rooms and contains photos that people have taken of their computer rooms. If you want to see it as gear-pr0n you can, obviously, but it’s more about the context of it. The messy IRLity, that very few people get to see. The material context of computer culture, if you will.
And now, Geraldine Juarez of the fresh F.A.T. Lab gave me an award for the book. And what an award! It’s the F.A.T NIKA – “the fake Gucci of the fame economy” and “a 3D modelled object statuette, copied from Wikipedia images of the Greek Nike of Samothrace and Ars Electronica’s Golden Nica”. Hooray!
The book was released and exhibited at CLICK Festival last weekend, and it will be available to order in a few days. Some minor errors that need to be fixed first. E-mail me if you want to be reminded. In the meantime:
Interviews are strange. Sometimes it’s almost like being a research assistant for the journalist — especially when it’s about chip/demo stuff. Unpaid work is always the best work!
But yeah, recently I was interviewed by a journalist who had obviously studied my Chipflip-timeline pretty well. That was a nice change. And one of the purposes of that list was indeed to educate researchers (though that might’ve been lost now, when it’s become so big).
Here is the article in English. It’s packed with references, many of which I’ve never heard about (which is good!). I like that Kjell Nordbo is mentioned as one of the most respected producers in the scene (my guess is that both 4mat and me mentioned him).
Q. Do you sometimes feel limited by hardware/software used?
The character of any technology lies in the limitations. If something is unlimited, it doesn’t even exist. : ) The fun part of playing a piano is to have two hands and fixed notes and so on. So yes, of course I feel limited. Often it’s in a good way of subconsciously feeling like “phew, I don’t have to make that decision” or “ah okay nice so I have to challenge myself to come up with a different solution than what I was thinking of”. Sometimes it’s just bad, of course, when you want to have more voices and so on. But then I’ll just record stuff and overdub.
Q. Where do you place the born of chip music?
- 1951 with the first digital music
- 1977 and the first video game console with a soundchip
- 1989 when the term chipmusic first appeared in the demoscene
- 1999 with micromusic.net, record relases, concerts, etc
The origin of chipmusic was, I guess, rather expected. There were computers with software that you could use to make music. So people started to do that. And they distributed their music for free, to get maximum attention. Demos/intros/music-compilations started to appear on big floppy disks, sent around the world. Or – and perhaps more interesting – there were also modem-networks of hackers/traders etc who distributed these materials around the world.
Q. I noticed that people thinks that chip music is a derivation of some Warp ambient-techno, but you will confirm me that it’s not so (maybe it’s the contrary, and people like AFX has been influenced to the gaming culture).
Aphex Twin’s label Rephlex was one of the few labels who were connected with the early chipscene around year 2000. They released Bodenständig 2000′s album, which is one of the first examples, and still a fantastic album. Also artists like DMX Krew and Cylob were slightly involved with micromusic.net. But other than that – all the big labels like Warp were far too serious to have anything to do with chipmusic : ) In general, it’s quite rare to hear chipmusic that sounds like slow IDM. The C64-musician ED is a good exception though.