Shawn Phase lays it down with a half hour of intense drum work, remixing tracks from Coda, Blitz Lunar, and more! An epic, swirling soundscape of various original chiptune sounds. There is nothing like the pure sound of chiptunes with the irreplaceable sound of live drums.
They have brought you Springtunes, then I heard about their awesomeness with the fantastic Summertunes, then patiently awaited the highly anticipated release of Autumntunes. Well now the folks over at the chiptune label ubiktune have encased an entire year of seasonal greatness with, you guessed it, Wintertunes. This is a brand new compilation from many fantastic artists from the chiptune community.
This album features some spectacular snow themed, ice sheeted tracks from the likes of Temp Sound Solutions, Zan-zan-zawa-veia, as well as recent chiptune darling Derris-Kharlan, and plenty more from folks new and old to the seasonal tunes series.
Things kick off with the funky Magic Snow is White and Slow by nq\skrju (I have no clue how to pronounce that). We are hit with a funky groove that layers some clap like glitchy leads and sample voice overs that create an upbeat mood of driving down a dark winter road with your friends as the snow begins to fall. Navigator on the other hand takes on a more somber space like tone. This track comes our way courtesy Rico Zerone and creates a vibe more akin to a snowy tundra as opposed to a soft snow covered yard. The song creates images of a vast swath of endless white snow.
Skipping ahead a few tracks we hear from Captain Tortilla with his track Wind Chill. This song creates an adventurous NES game style melody that reminds one of a side scrolling winter level from many a game back in those days. This is followed up by my favorite track on this collection, the flustered tones of Jeca Jeca by the ever interesting Zan-zan-zawa-veia. This track melds together Zzzv's glitchy nature with a laid back tune that would be played during Christmas in an alternate world. The slow, melodic track wraps around and slowly rises in both pace and insanity as we reach the end.
We reach the end of the album with a breathtaking track from Temp Sound Solutions. I have always enjoyed the juxtaposition between his gritty video game covers and the very relaxing, almost daze inducing chiptune work he has created. Angels' Bane definitely fits in with that category of chiptunes. The track gives off a nostalgic mood with it's soft beeps and buzzes, as if you were hearing a recognizable song from outside of a store window. The track gives off a ton of lazily window shopping along main street while bundled up in a brand new winter coat and simply enjoying the scenery of it all. The laid back atmosphere also brings the album to a very smooth, well defined ending.
The album, much like it's predecessors, is a relaxing, nostalgic look back on the recently passed season, and all the seasons before that as well. Remember that you can grab the album for free through the Wintertunes page on ubiktune. Be sure to grab all their previous compilations while you are there as well.
Track listing after the break. 1. nq\skrju — Magic Snow is White and Slow (1:41) 2. Rico Zerone — Navigator (2:30) 3. Tony Thai — Cough Syrup Overdose (2:37) 4. Derris-Kharlan — Reconciliation (2:18) 5. Captain Torilla — Wind Chill (2:39) 6. Zan-zan-zawa-veia — Jeca Jeca (4:45) 7. Blitz Lunar — The Labyrinth of Skadi (5:05) 8. zinger — Hibernation Hacker (5:00) 9. coda & surasshu — lucia (6:17) 10. ast0r — Mere Words (Bobby McFerrin) (3:12) 11. Temp Sound Solutions — Angels' Bane (2:57)
After a breezy Autumn, Ubiktune is back with another all star collection of nostalgia driven chiptunes in Autumntunes. For those like me who are fans of prior release Summertunes, then you will no doubt find much to enjoy in this longing look back for the colorful days of autumn during these chilly holidays.
There is much to be heard here as well. In this 16 track collection we hear from big time chiptune composers like Virt in his worldly track Mecha-Kukai Travels To Chang'An, which is a fast paced six minute romp/action sequence through what seems like a gently shimmering chinese city on the edge of the forest. We also have Shnabubula in Use a Rake, which is a two minute battle of wits between a man, armed with his rake, and the ever cunning pile of leaves he hopes to defeat, at least that's what I interpret in this crunchy, ever changing and surprisingly in your face track.
We also have relative unknowns, but with fantastic tracks. Zinger's Ashen Emotion is an epic little track that comes highly recommended. A spacerock feel gives you the idea of rocketing out of earth's orbit in mid October, or perhaps blasting through a hostile alien world that seems to be going through the same earth seasons we have back home. Five Minutes Of Autumn from Megus closes the album with a clacking metronome which is swiftly covered by ominous tones and winds. The song slowly builds until about a minute in when we hear the main theme come in. The song feels like an ending reprise and reflection on both the album, as well as the season and one long adventure. The gentle melody sways along adding guitars and effects along the way. The song slides it's way through several different moods as instruments drop in and out, finally bringing things to a close with an abrupt somber end.
We can't leave out chiptune staples like Temp Sound Solutions with his glitched out rained in Phrt, with it's plodding pace, claustrophobic feel and great use of samples, this one will definitely stick with you well after it is finished playing. Or Alex Mauer's Gentle With The Hand, a stirring piece that slides from intimidating blasts of sound to high relaxing notes. As if coming in and out of consciousness.
And that is only a small handful of what is encapsulated here! Nearly an hour of finely crafted chiptunes to mourn the end of fall, and step into the cold of winter. Did I also mention the album, as with all Ubiktune releases, is free? Well it is! So head over to the Autumntunes page and download it right away!
Also click on through to see the full list of songs and artists.
01 Megus - Five Minutes Of Autumn 02 Alex Mauer - Gentle With The Hand 03 Zinger - Ashen Emotion 04 Joule - Bursting Bubble Boy 05 Kulor - Doorbellsplosion 06 Malmen - Flirt Talk 07 Blitz Lunar - Heavenly Spores 08 Shnabubula - Use A Rake 09 Virt - Mecha-Kukai Travels to Chang'An 10 Manwe - Rotagilla 11 Syphus - Drop Table 12 Coda - Harvest Moon 13 nq/skrju - The Whiskey Has Been Drinking, Not Me 14 Zan-Zan-Zawa-Veia - Fixt Path 15 Temp Sound Solutions - Phrt 16 C-jeff - Last Minutes Of Autumn
chiptune netlabel ubiktune celebrates both their tenth release as well as the end of summer with their new compilation Summertunes. The album is a collection of amazing chiptune artists paying tribute to lost summers with some incredible renditions of upbeat and nostalgia infused songs. We have the somber opening of Marine, which leads into a jazzy upbeat look back on summer. Also possibly my favorite track on the album, Coda's Beach in the Sky which is equal parts relaxing beach town and bright sidescrolling adventure. Of course we have plenty of other amazing tracks all with their own tones, qualities, and summery feel to them.
For those who enjoyed spending summer vacations outside playing in the sun and water just as much as spending entire summer days inside trying to reach the end of Chrono Trigger or Sonic the Hedgehog, this album is definitely for you.
Full tracklisting is as follows.
01. C-jeff & Random - Marine (5:17)
02. Vincenzo - Summer Thing (2:43)
03. Xaimus - Malmen in Space (2:52)
04. Temp Sound Solutions - Ocean City Arcades (3:15)
05. Coda - Beach in The Sky (2:32)
06. Shnabubula - Pastorale Scenes (2:10)
07. Yerzmyey - AY is Not A Doorbell (2:48)
08. Blitz Lunar - Super Soaker (2:07)
09. Malmen - Unbelievable Lips (2:30)
10. MmcM - Summer is Always With Me (4:17)
11. Rico Zerone - Empty Beach (1:57)