ZEN ALBATROSS returns with all new industrial techno chiptune EP

Latest Transmission. 

It's been quite some time since I had the chance to mention Zen Albatross on this site. I think I might actually have his business card around here somewhere, an incredible feet for a hermit such as me. 

It's also been a long time since I was able to get down to something this intensely glitched out and crunchy. White noise is real, and it infests this album in the most pleasurable way possible. Beneath the gritty texture though is where the real fun happens. Zen winds his way through a series of foreboding, hard hitting, and or dance inducing melodies.

In this long-awaited transmission, ZEN ALBATROSS summons massive black monoliths of low-fidelity dance floor anxiety. Screaming cassette decks provide air support for slow-building Game Boy drones as waves of radio static and percussive noise hit like Hellfire missiles – an imperfect anthem for our contemporary dystopia.
— Zen Albatross

Josh Whelchel announces Songs for the Cure '10 - charity album for cancer research

Songs for the Cure '10 from Josh Whelchel on Vimeo.

Like the past couple years, Josh Whelchel has been hard at work organizing compilations among the video game composer, chiptune, and VG remix communities and more for a noble cause. That cause is the Songs for the Cure 2010 compilation. The goal of the album is to raise money for the Relay for Life event held specifically at the University of Cincinnati and the American Cancer Society through music. The goal is to raise 10,000 dollars for cancer research by April 23rd, 2010. As of the time of this writing they are at exactly $3,194...No wait. $3,198 dollars. With your help the goal of 10,000 can be reached, and hopefully even surpassed over the next two months!

RIght now until March 1st (which is only a few days away!) the album is available with a donation right now. Head over to cancerdrive.org and send $10 to this great cause and you will receive a digital copy of the album in both MP3 and FLAC audio formats. If you want to really help though, a donation of $25 will net you a fancy free hard copy (and no S&H either). These prices only last until March 1st though, so be sure to place your orders right away!

What do you get on this album you might be asking though. Well you will be getting amazing music from the following list of performers, which include some of the best and brightest from VG Rock, VG Remixes, chiptunes, VGM, and independent music.

Two Seconds Away, Stemage, David DiMuzio, Alec & Eileen Holowka, Josh Whelchel, Jay Tholen, Big Giant Circles, Jessi Bair, Inez S. deDeugd-McComas, Morgen La Civita, Michael Huang, David Saulesco, Renee Winter, Tara Morrow, Helen Austin, Chiwawa, Inverse Phase, Michael Tanenbaum, Average Joe Crane, Roth Herrlinger, Melinda Hershey, Rich Brilli, Midnight Prophet, Bradley Burr, Rob Westwood, Terry Whitehead, Fever Pitch, FFMusicDJ & Postgoodism, Battlecake, Craig Stern, Danny Clay, T.R. Beery, Martha Mingle, Zen Albatross, 5 of 6, Barry van Oudtshoorn, J.W. Hendricks, 12 Followers/Meteo Xavier, Poolside, Gonçalo Lourenço, and more!

And to give you a taste of some of these amazing tracks, Josh Whelchel has sent me a demo for you to check out or download below. And remember, donate now at cancerdrive.org! [gplayer href="http://gamemusic4all.com/audio/Songs%20for%20the%20Cure%20%2710%20Preview.mp3"]Songs for the Cure 2010 preview featuring Stemage - The Challenger; Tara Morrow - Your Name; Battlecake - Time Scar (Chrono Cross Arr.); and Josh Whelchel - Sing Gloria (feat. Tara Morrow, Melinda Hershey, Rich Brilli)[/gplayer] Download Songs for the Cure 2010 Preview

New from 8bitpeoples: Left - Minusbaby & I'll Have You Naked by the End of This ROM - Saskrotch

We got two brand new and as always very epic releases from 8bitpeoples. Since Blip Festival 2009 is happening RIGHT NOW, I figured it would be a good time to point them out. Also a good time to mention that ZenAlbatross has written up his own Unnoficial Guide to Blip Festival so be sure to check that out as well! Now on to the releases! First up is Minusbaby, marking release 101 with the new EP Left.

The first time I listened to "Left" I was 6,000 feet above sea level being driven in a car navigating the winding roads of the Himalayas. The last time I listened to "Left" was a few minutes ago while watching some writers at the 5Pointz graffiti spot in Queens. Both times I was mentally transported to a place between those two extremes – the majestic and the everyday. Can something be both timeless and fresh? It can when the bass is the base and each snare truly ensnares.

Once again, minusbaby has shown us the proto-urban; an audio space where an imaginary city is built in the mind's eye from the rawest materials and yet still seems to be polished and eternal. Please, enjoy, as I do, the reductive/constructive paradox which is minusbaby's perpetual rhythm machine and sip and nibble from one of the most inconspicuously nuanced suppers ever to disguise itself as a snack. Simplicity was never so deceptive.

Second up is the amazing, not to mention sexy new EP from Saskrotch, I'll Have You Naked by the End of This ROM

In the early summer of 2007, the first demo from I'll Have You Naked By the End of this ROM, an 8 second loop from Mustard, was played for Nullsleep over tinny DS speakers. Thirty months of discarded demos, obsessive re-writes, and at least three mastering sessions later, one of the true innovators of chipbreak brings you 5 tracks of high speed guilt trips and over joyous ceremony. This is Raw. This Is Saskrotch.

Anamanaguchi - Dawn Metropolis guest review by Zen Albatross

It has been some time since we have had a guest article and I am glad to be breaking that long cold silence with a great guest review by the ever talented Zen Albatross. He graces us with his review of Anamanaguchi's brand new album Dawn Metropolis. Enough from me though, read the review below!

Anyone that has even a passing familiarity with Chip Music probably knows Anamanaguchi. Ever since the NES-infused foursome busted their way into the spotlight of New York City’s chip music scene several years back, Anamanaguchi has quickly become one of the unofficial ambassadors of chiptune music around the world. The young ensemble of NYU’ers have continuously proven themselves to be one of the most effective fusions of Pop Rock and 8-bit electronic music to date. Their new album, Dawn Metropolis doesn’t stray very far from the original formula that launched the band’s popularity, but anyone who has heard Anamanaguchi knows that this is (for the most part) a good thing.

When you listen to Anamanaguchi, it goes without saying that your primary objective should be “rocking the fuck out.” With this attitude in mind, it’s difficult to not have a good time with Dawn Metropolis. Power pop melodies & harmonies played by guitars and Nintendos effortlessly rocket through outer space, engaging in a frantic and unrelenting high-speed pursuit. The album starts out with ‘Blackout City’ which immediately kicks things into gear with driving 8-bit pop melodies and upbeat power chords – Familiar territory for those fond of the group’s pop stylings, and undoubtedly a strong first impression for new listeners. ‘Jetpack Blues’ and the album’s title track, ‘Dawn Metropolis’ truly showcase the band’s songwriting ability as NES and guitar melodically orbit around each other, occasionally joining together to sing in unison. It’s truly a sonic spectacle, and a fun one at that, but listeners who strive for something more might find their interests waning after this point.

It’s interesting to note that ‘Guchi’s greatest strengths are perhaps at the same time their greatest weaknesses. Like the pop rock influences from which they draw their unique sound, the song structures eventually become somewhat predictable, and the similar upbeat key signatures in ‘Danger Mountain’ and ‘Tempest, Teamwork, Triumph’ can be trying on the patience of those that are expecting more in terms of variety. These tracks can still be merited for their catchy melodies and hooks, but are nevertheless tiresome after the first half of the album. However, those seeking more diversity will be pleased with the confronting and dramatic sound of ‘Overarrow’ which contains some gorgeously-written minor sections that sound as if they are engaged in battle with the other elements of the tune. Eventually, it satisfyingly gives way to a triumphant melodic counter-attack that sets things right once more. Perhaps the most markedly different tune on Dawn Metropolis (and my personal favorite) is the closing track, ‘Mermaid’. Starting as a slow, contemplative march through a seemingly endless battlefield, it eventually builds to a moment of theatric epiphany, closely followed by a groovy dance section that is equal parts brooding and foot-tappingly catchy. The album ends with thunderous, dark power chords and harsh, discordant squarewaves and noise – An unsettling but nevertheless brilliantly orchestrated outro that prophecises ill tidings for a pixelated world with an uncertain future.

If you’ve never heard Anamanaguchi before, this album serves as a fine introduction to New York City’s profusely talented hometown heroes of Chip-Rock. Veteran listeners expecting more of what they love about the band will be generously rewarded. The pop formula works, and this album is solid proof, but those who find themselves growing weary of the upbeat, highly melodic structures that form the majority of the album’s sound may be left high and dry to an extent. Overall, Dawn Metropolis is still an entertaining romp for anyone with a penchant for the musical union of melodic chiptunes, wailing guitars and ridiculously catchy power-pop oeuvres.

Listen to the album for free and view more awesome videos by visiting the band's slick new website at www.DawnMetropolis.com.


Thanks again to Zen Albatross for reviewing the album and contributing to GM4A. Be sure to check out his site!