Sick Damage Presents: Cinco De Chipo, An 8-Bit Charity Party

Down for video games, electro music, and getting drunk in the name of good causes? The Manhattan-based ‘geek nightlife’ promotion company Sick Damage is hosting a Cinco de Mayo charity party in New York this weekend to help aid David A. Croach, a close friend who has been recently diagnosed with leukemia:

This show is a benefit for our good friend, and avid gamer, David A. Croach “DAC”, who was recently diagnosed with leukemia. Half of the door profits with be donated to DAC and his family in search for a perfect-match bone marrow transplant. For more information on how to help/donate or how to get tested to see if YOU are a perfect match for DAC, please check out his site!

Cinco De Chipo, held at Union Hall in Brooklyn, looks incredibly promising with action-packed performances from various artists featuring chiptune/dubstep/electro sets of Dj CUTMAN and KNIFE CITY, a one-of-a-kind chiptune violin performance by Fluxer, ’90s pro-wrestling inspired chiptune music by Heavyw8bit, and dark and dramatic ’60s-inspired stylings from PROM QUEEN.

The event is restricted to those who are 21 and up with a $5 cover. You can find more information on the event on Sick Damage’s Facebook, but be sure to check out the Cinco de Chipo event page to RSVP for one of the most thrilling Cinco de Mayos yet!

Dates Announced for Minibosses 2012 Bay Area Tour

Calling all Bay Area residents, the Minibosses are comin’ at you fast this June! With a broad range of instrumental covers of 8-bit NES songs, the Minibosses will rip into your soul with hard-hitting video game metal. Even still, the Minibosses tend to effectively reconstruct all your old favorites into something every gamer will recognize and enjoy which makes it easy to see why the reality of this band’s popularity is made quite apparent (check out their latest release Brass 2: Mouth if you haven’t). And let’s not get into stage presence. Wait, we will. Being at a Minibosses show can easily be one of the best live performances of your life, simply because these dudes just get it. Claiming total ownership over the crowd with the ways they can easily excite fans by playing a specific Castlevania theme throughout the night just to mess around, the Minibosses are sure to please anyone who has picked up a NES controller.

The Minibosses will embark on what they call a mini-tour, travelling through various locations in the San Francisco Bay Area with their instruments in tow. Peep the dates and locations below:

FRIDAY June 1st, 2012 – Subzero Fest in San Jose
FRIDAY June 1st, 2012 –  Hemlock Tav in San Francisco
SATURDAY June 2nd, 2012 – Ocean Beach Studio in San Francisco
SATURDAY June 2nd, 2012 – Catalyst in San Jose
SUNDAY June 3rd, 2012 – Streetlight Records in San Jose

Ticket links and other information will be coming soon, so be sure to check back here or the Minibosses Facebook page for more updates.

Chris Hüelsbeck Presents the Turrican Soundtrack Anthology Project & Fundraiser

 

From remix64.com:

Featuring a cosmic hero in a silver battlesuit, the Turricanseries of games brought nonstop action to all gaming systems of the 80’s and 90’s, including C64 and Amiga, Atari ST and PC, as well as Genesis and Super Nintendo. The beautiful synthesizer scores for these games were created by Chris Hüelsbeck, arguably one of today’s most popular game music composers in the world. Hüelsbeck’s soundtracks certainly played a major role in shaping Turrican into a digital legend over the years.

Almost 20 years have passed since the last game in the series was released, but Chris has big plans to bring Turrican back from retirement – at least musically – with the production of the Turrican Soundtrack Anthology: The idea behind this is an epic limited edition box set of at least three CDs, which will feature almost every melody from the saga in newly arranged and recorded versions (including titles like Concerto for Laser and Enemies”, Metal Stars”, Hall of Heroes”, as well as full length versions of all main titles and end-credits!). While this box set is bound to please every synthesizer music fan out there, new bonus recordings with the WDR Radio Orchestra are also lined up for the project, to be realised in the context of a symphonic game music concert in November and supervised by the producers of the acclaimed Symphonic Shades – Hüelsbeck in Concert event.

In order to realize these ambitious plans, a budget of at least 75,000 US-Dollars (about 58,000 Euro) has to be secured. To achieve this, Chris is now asking his fans to support him in a Kickstarter campaign to make the Turrican Anthology become a reality. “My first Turrican album has sold 10.000 units over the years”, Huelsbeck says, “I know that the games still have a following, too. This project is a personal dream of mine and I hope that together we can make this happen!”

Aside from the finished CDs, supporters of the project can get their hands on numerous goodies like posters, t-shirts, Turrican ringtones for their mobiles, or even tickets for an orchestral game music concert that will take place in November in Cologne, Germany. Those who are willing to support the project with a larger sum may take an exclusive look behind the scenes and will be personally informed by Chris about the progress during the production. Detailed information on the campaign, running from April 16th to June 3rd, can be found at: www.turricansoundtrack.com.

Submit Your Work for the Street Fighter 25th Anniversary Music Tribute

 

Chun-Li’s killer thighs. Finally performing your first super combo. Quarter-circle forward, punch. Whether you’re a fan of Street Fighter or not, there’s no denying how influential this series has been in all of our lives.  To kick off the commemoration of one of the best-selling video game franchises of all time, Capcom is opening up submissions to showcase fan music all year long:

One of the most timeless elements of the Street Fighter series has always been the music. Whether it was the first time you heard Akuma’s theme in a Super Street Fighter II Turbo arcade, or when you realized that Guile’s theme went with everything, the music has inspired people around the world. Now, you have an opportunity to be a part of that musical history! We want to hear music that you’ve come up with. Whether you’re a first time mixer, or have a full orchestra at your disposal, your music is welcome! Throughout the year, we’ll be highlighting our favorite pieces, and some of them may even be utilized in our 25th Anniversary celebration activities. It’s a great opportunity to have your work become a part of history!

There are no limitations to the genre or style of music, as original songs inspired by the Street Fighter series and remixes sampled from existing themes are currently being accepted. However, keep in mind that anything that you submit must be your own work and no hateful or obscene lyrics will be accepted. Also, be sure upload your music to a location where it can easily be streamed, such as YouTube. The deadline to submit is Friday, May 4, 2012 at 11:59 PM PST.

If you are interested in this unique opportunity to showcase your work with a broad audience, you can fill out submission details and submit your work to Capcom here. Any artists present? Check out the Street Fighter 25th Anniversary Art Tribute as well.

Blip Festival 2012 in New York City Presented by 8bitpeoples


With the event website now up, we’ve just received word about Blip Festival 2012, taking place in NYC on Friday, May 25th to Sunday, May 27th:

Thrift-store electronics collide with dancefloor sensibilities as Blip Festival makes its long-awaited return to New York City. Produced by 8bitpeoples in association with The Tank and Live Nation, the Blip Festival 2012 finds Manhattan once again at the center of the chipmusic universe. From May 25-27, musicians and visualists from all corners of the globe assemble at the Gramercy Theatre to perform astonishing music & motion graphics, produced on and inspired by early-generation home computers and gaming consoles.

Presented by leading chiptune label 8bitpeoples, the sixth annual Blip Festival promises yet another explosive round-up of the world’s chipmusic talent, with top-notch performances by Burnkit2600, Danimal Cannon, CHiKA, Graffiti Monsters, Pulselooper, Wizwars, and waaaay too many more rad artists to list with more to be announced soon.  Single-night and three-day passes are both available in limited quantities, so buying a ticket immediately is strongly encouraged. So, what are you waiting for? Don’t let one of the most exciting nights for chip music pass you by and be sure to take billions of pictures and videos for us!

GDC Vault Adds Free GDC 2012 Videos Online


Following this year’s Game Developers Conference, GDC Vault, a service that hosts a variety of audio, video, and PowerPoint presentations of previous Game Developers Conferences, has just added free video content from GDC 2012 that just happened last month:

Following the debut of numerous GDC 2012 videos earlier this month, the GDC Vault service has debuted a trio of free video lectures from last March’s show, featuring talks from the legendary Civilization creator Sid Meier, iWin VP Laralyn McWilliams on the importance of metrics, and White House analyst Constance Steinkuehler Squire.

These free videos join a host of other free and notable lectures already available on GDC Vault, including the recent release of classic game postmortems (Gauntlet, Harvest Moon and more) and track keynotes (from Blizzard, Plants Vs. Zombies creator George Fan, and more) from GDC 2012.

The following lectures provide a varied sample of the show’s informative and inspiring content, covering in-depth design philosophies, tricks for data analysis, and even how the government is impacting games as a medium.

While members-only content is available with an All-Access Pass purchase or a Studio Subscription, everyone has access to the Vault Free section, which you can get to by clicking here.

Attend T-MODE, Acquire Skills from Inverse Phase & Dj CUTMAN

 

Calling itself a “hybrid event that fuses together the powerful appeal of anime with the high energy entertainment of video games”, T-MODE, also known as Tournament Mode, is a anime and gaming convention in the Washington, DC metro area that celebrates the fusion of anime, gaming, music, cosplay, and all things otaku. This year, T-MODE will commence this weekend, Friday, April 20th until Sunday, April 22nd.

Yes. Yes, we know. We’re actually writing about a gaming and anime convention. However, what sets T-MODE apart from other gaming and anime conventions are the panels dedicated to chiptune and DJing by none other chiptune wunderkind Inverse Phase and video game DJ mastermind Dj CUTMAN. From learning how to spot fake chiptunes to being educated on the art of laptop DJing, these dudes have you covered. You can even learn how to write your own Nintendo music!

While the pre-registration deadline for T-MODE has already passed, those in the Rockville, MD area can still register and buy tickets at the door — 1-Day and 3-Day memberships are available for $35 and $55, respectively. Don’t miss out on this cool opportunity to learn how to make and mix music from some of the pros.

Jeremy Soule and Nobuo Uematsu on Classic FM’s 2012 Hall of Fame

 

Classic FM, the UK’s most popular commercial radio station, and savings bank NS&I have partnered together to host Classic FM’s 2012 Hall of Fame, touted as “the ultimate chart in classical works” that ranges from 300 of the best sonatas, symphonies, concertos and choral works of the year by public vote.

One may ask, “Why is ThaSauce writing about some random classical charts in the UK?”. Well, this year marks avid success for the video game vote-campaign, as Jeremy Soule’s work on TESV: Skyrim has reached number 238 with “Dragonborn” being highlighted as Soule’s most prolific work., while Nobuo Uematsu has reached a whopping number 16  on this year’s Hall of Fame with “Aerith’s Theme” as the second highest new entry within the charts.

Congratulations to both composers and a big ‘hoo-ha!” to the VGM community, which definitely shows that with enough persistence, video game music truly has a chance to shine as individual musical pieces of beauty and grace just as much as a Beethoven or Chopin work.

PAX East 2012 Live Streaming Event on TwitchTV


Not making it to PAX East this year? Just a head’s up for those who are missing out – TwitchTV is hosting a live stream of this weekend’s events from the Main and Naga Theatre. Check out the schedule of events below to catch some of your favorite panels. Oh, and remember that it’s live stream, so set your clocks to mind Eastern Daylight Time (EDT).

[EXPAND Click here for PAX East 2012’s Schedule of Events (April 6-8)]

PAX East Streaming Schedule: April 6th (Friday)

Story Time with Jordan Mechner (aka the PAX East Keynote!)
10:30am – 11:30am

Penny Arcade Q & A #1
11:30am – 12:30pm

Rooster Teeth
1:00pm – 2:00pm

Best of the 2012 D.I.C.E. Summit
2:30pm – 3:30pm

An Uncharted 3 Story: The Chateau, Creation to Ashes
4:00pm – 5:00pm

Video Games Aren’t Just for Playing: Gameplay as Spectator Entertainment
5:30pm – 6:30pm

Extra Credits
7:00pm – 8:00pm

PAX East Streaming Schedule: April 7th (Saturday)

Penny Arcade – Make a Strip!
10:30am – 12:00pm

Epic Games: Past, Present and Future
1:00pm – 2:00pm

Mega64 Panel Celebrating The Resurrection
2:30pm – 3:30pm

Pitch Your Game Idea!
4:00pm – 5:00pm

Community Management 2012: Game Journos Living In Captivity
5:30pm – 6:30pm

Raising the Next Generation of Geeks
7:00pm – 8:00pm

Retrogame Roadshow: Are Your Old Games Actually Buried Treasure?
8:30pm – 9:30pm

PAX East Streaming Schedule: April 8th (Sunday)
Damage Report — How Crisis Management Defines Your Game
10:00am – 11:00am

If I hear “Gamification” one more time I’m going to scream
11:30am – 12:30pm

Admit It – You Play Social Games. Let’s Talk About Them.
1:00pm – 2:00pm

Penny Arcade Panel #2
2:00pm – 3:00pm

The Indie Rant: Indie Developers Gone Wild
4:00pm – 5:00pm

Omegathon Final Round and Closing Ceremony
5:30pm – 6:30pm[/EXPAND]

While we’ve attempted to embed a stream of the expo events above, be sure to check out TwitchTV’s PAX channel for live chat and streamage here.

Shnabubula Releases NES Jams, Brains Melt

The story picks up immediately where Game Genie ends. A young boy, Tommy, has just defeated his Game Genie, and in its place is a mysterious NES cartridge. Upon placing it in his NES, something wondrous occurs; the message PREPARE TO JAM appears and Tommy approaches his brother’s keyboard. Suddenly, the game and his fingers begin to play music together! Now, this is just a brief summation of the album’s story; the real beauty is the album itself. Just read with me as I take you on an aural tour through the 11 tracks contained on this album. Let us begin.

1. Underwater (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles)     2:51

Starts out calm and aquatic sounding… 0:20 brings in some piano work. 0:40 brings in a nice little jazzy part. Pretty nice track; great way to kick the album off. 1:09 kicks off a bit of a calm section, and 1:18 or so is where it really kicks off with some nice arrangement. The piano and the NES accompaniment work phenomenally together. 1:56 or so brings in a series of crescendos. 2:10 is where you can tell the end is coming. Everything keeps on getting better and better until the finale begins at 2:44.

2. Temple (Zelda 2)     3:16

Source kicks off right away, of course. Sam keeps it simple, sticking to the source pretty tightly with minor changes with the accompaniment. 0:29 is where the accompaniment takes off, and the keys follow shortly after. The source is held tightly for the first minute, and then some nice arrangement comes in at 1:09 or so. This is probably one of the best renditions of this theme I’ve heard, and I’ve heard a few. 1:52 brings a breakdown, and it starts to pick up once again at 2:04 or so. 2:16 is where some real awesome piano comes in, and it only gets more awesome from there. The source is loosely held throughout this segment, and comes back in full force with crazy accompaniment at 2:56 or so. Final at about 3:09.

3. Alien Lair (Contra)     3:06

This one starts out kinda tense. 0:17 changes that in an instant; some big stuff is going down somewhere. 0:37 brings even more tension in, with force put into each and every piano note. 1:06 brings a very brief break. This song definitely has a nice feel to it, one that captures quite a few intense emotions in its many layers. 2:04 brings this point home, and even moreso at 2:15. The accompaniment goes pretty nuts from here on out. The end is definitely near at 3:01.

4. Night Sea (Little Nemo the Dream Master)     3:45

And now a well-placed calm spot; don’t be fooled, it’s just the calm before the storm. Shnabubula actually released a video of this track on his Youtube channel as a teaser for the album; it was the second such teaser. 0:32 brings in some nice bass. Nice work on the keys at 0:56 or so, and great accompaniment at 1:04 on. This song definitely has a great flow, one that makes me just want to sway back and forth to the rhythm. Some nice solo at 1:55 or so; back to the source at 2:10 with some embellishments. Naturally; wouldn’t be a Shnabubula track without them. Okay, so maybe not so calm; 2:40 or so brings some pretty crazy piano, and it calms down at 2:56. Very calm at 3:10 or so; it remains this way until the end of the track. The true finale begins at 3:34.

5. Dwelling of Doom (Castlevania 2)     3:16

Funky, just the way I like it! It starts getting even funkier at 0:22 or so. Even crazier parts begin at around 0:56; this song is focused mostly on the keys and the accompaniment only adds to the experience. It starts getting pretty crazy at 1:30 or so; breakdown at 1:50. It really picks back up at 2:07; signature Shnabubula insanity comes in not too long after. I’m still amazed that he can moves his hands as fast as he can; seriously, he must be part machine or something, because this skill is near-inhuman. The finale begins suddenly at 3:10.

6. Kung Fu Alley (NES Original)     4:42

This is completely original, and completely lacks the keys of all the other tracks. Fitting that it’s the middle track; five are before it and five are after it. Very nice rhythm, and very nice to listen to. Apparently, the track was supposed to loop at some point, but it wouldn’t. Ah well, it’s a great song nonetheless. Pretty nice part at 1:32 or so. Short breakdown at 1:58 or so, that goes into another great part; sounds like it could be a stage set atop some cliffs or something. 2:28 brings in some nice duality between dominant parts in the track, and 2:42 brings in some nice backing effects. 3:06 adds in a whole different part that fits in perfectly. Again, the song has some great flow and rhythm to it. Everything fits together perfectly, and it sounds phenomenal. There’s a feeling of something coming at 3:56 or so; probably signaling the finale. And the finale does come in at 4:28 or so.

7. Title (Double Dragon)     3:34

This was the first song Shnabubula released as a teaser on his YouTube channel. Source comes in at the ten-second mark. Very fast-paced, and great to listen to. 0:32 brings a slightly slower part. 0:54 kicks off more source usage and also signals the beginning of some awesome arrangement; check out 1:24. Just when you think the source is gonna kick off again at 1:38, Shnabubula switches it up with a rather beautiful breakdown. It starts picking up again at 2:02. Everything that follows is just pure greatness and insanity, especially at 2:32. Source leaps back in at 2:43, maintaining the same speed from the insanity. The finale kicks off for this song at 3:14. Yes, a 20 second long finale. Great work though.

8. Gemini Man (Megaman 3)     3:57

This is probably one of the more underrated MM3 tracks; let’s see what Shnab can do with this one. Some nice flair comes in at 0:12 or so in the form of source usage. More source usage at 1:06 or so. The accompaniment on this song works so well with the keys, and really helps to set the mood. 1:38 kicks off a nice arranged section. 1:59 brings in a breakdown, and it starts to come together once again at 2:17. 2:51 brings the source usage back into full force, with the usual additions and arrangement. 3:08 is where the accompaniment really adds a feeling of finality to the track; the end is definitely near. 3:24 on reinforces this point, and the finale finally begins at 3:48 or so.

9. Stage 1 (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2)     2:59

This kicks off instantly with a great speed and feel. 0:27 makes you just want to yell out HEROES IN A HALF-SHELL! TURTLE POWER! 0:52 has a pretty nice section of keys. 1:12 has the HEROES IN A HALF-SHELL part once again. 1:28 signals the start of a pretty sweet section, focusing on keys with some great accompaniment. 2:14 keeps the speed going with some awesome section, building and building until 2:35 when the finale starts with the HEROES IN A HALF-SHELL part and truly ending at 2:55. Such a great fast song.

10. Area A (Shatterhand)     3:25

In comparison to the previous track, this song is rather slow. But it’s still great; it picks up at 0:17. Okay, maybe it’s not slow; it’s pretty nice. A really smooth section begins at 0:47; 1:14 or so signals another pretty nice section. 1:38 has some more arrangement, and everything’s put together in a wondrous fashion. A sense of finality almost comes in at 2:17 or so; a small breakdown at 2:24 or so also sounds like it is leading up to the end. Some really awesome piano comes in at 2:46 with great crescendos on the accompaniment. The end is near at 3:10, and the song ends at 3:23.

11. Wood Man (Megaman 2)     3:37

Here it is, the final track on this album. Sticks to the source pretty strictly at the start, then takes off at 0:32 with the accompaniment first, and then it really begins with the piano at 0:42. There’s a great breakdown at 1:14, and it continues for some time. This part loosely adheres to the source, keeping the same rhythm but adding in many many more parts. Great work on the keys from 2:00 on. 2:19 keeps the insanity going. I’m surprised his hands aren’t on fire by now; this is such an insane speed. Some source resumes at 2:42 with more crazy piano playing; it normalizes at 2:55 or so. Some nice accompaniment effects begin at the three-minute mark, really adding to the sense of finality. They pick up even more at 3:22 or so. The finale begins at 3:32, and the end of the album is shortly after.

To help publicize the release of the album, Shnabubula organized a listening party on 3/15, hosted on Noise Channel Radio. The show, run by virt’s wife Truestar, peaked at 100 listeners, and the album is currently at #5 on the Bandcamp top sellers list. It’s actually pay-what-you-want, so if you want it free, you can get it for free. But I’m sure that Shnabubula would appreciate some payment on it; he certainly deserves it. The album can be found both on Ubiktune and Bandcamp; it’s well worth the download, and the money if you choose to actually buy it. Stay tuned for an interview with Shnabubula, among other things. Until next time, game on!