RECORD CRACK: In other words… I.E. is here

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You may not know the name Margot Padilla but keep it in mind. She has been making music out of Los Angeles for about a decade and Padilla (i.e. I.E.) released her debut album (at the length of an EP) called Most Importantly (Deathbomb Arc), which was co-produced with clipping.’s Jonathan Snipes, and mastered by Thomas Dimuzio. She covers a wide range of styles and sounds going in and out of dance, punk, club, techno, electronica, and perhaps other things unknown.

If you are familiar with the work producer Snipes did with his previous group Captain Ahab, I.E.’s music would fit alongside their works, that chaotic/psychotic/far out-ic vibe that you’ll ever fall in love with or toss out the car window. With luck, you’ll do the former.

There is a vinyl pressing of Most Importantly available, only 100 copies were pressed and you may buy it from the Deathbomb Arc web store.

VIDEO: Math The Band’s “Down”

Rhode Island’s Math The Band have created videos for each song on their forthcoming album Get Real (Anchor Brain), which means if you like what you’re hearing in the videos, you can become motivated towards hearing the album in full, as intended. I’m proud to say that is offering a world premiere for their video “Down”, and why this video in particular? For one, you have Kevin Steinhauser looking like he’s going in for the kill. Justine Mainville creates some sinister eyes, equipped with sinister lies if needed, and all of a sudden she’s wacking around the drums like crazy. What may have had origins in bedroom production splendor has turned into an open-sourced free for all, or at least their music and energy makes you feel like it is, and I felt yes, this would be perfect for my website to present to the world.

Here it is. You can pre-order the MP3 for this album with the Amazon link below. CD and vinyl versions can pre-ordered directly from the Anchor Brain/Big Cartel page.

REVIEW: Hirobleep’s “Psycho Disko 22”

Photobucket In the past, Hirobleep has released music on EP’s that have shown one side of his creativity but in perfect, single-based form. What I mean is singles perfect for radio airplay, if radio was still a major means of impact for music today. For Psycho Disko 22, he extends that single-based mentality and extends it to a non-stop 31 minute track.

If you are a fan of techno, acid, and a bit of minimalism along the way, this one is an incredible listen. While you can take it in as one massive 31 minute track, it sounds like there are about five or six different songs within this one mix, or at least Hirobleep gives the track a number of different dimensions and textures so that the listener can sense when one mood in one section changes into another. This may come when the drums and percussion makes a slight shift, and a keyboard riffs maintains itself as another sound drops out, another fades and turns into something else. It would be great to hear how this transfers on the dance floor, and I’d love to hear how DJ’s would manipulate this to cater to their needs. Hirobleep expands his pallet slightly merely by expanding what people have known him for and shows what he’s made of.

REVIEW: Hirobleep’s “Toy Soundz” (EP)

Photobucket In the time it has taken me to sit down and do a review of Hirobleep’s Toy Soundz EP, he has released four more projects. Four! Insane, but I know how that is, and it’s more than welcome.

For Toy Soundz, he is taking his music to where it sounds like perfect incidental music for movies, still doing his thing with that minimalistic Casio vibe I know and love, but with this one he reveals a passion for creating music that would be the perfect thing to find on a soundtrack long forgotten. Bits and pieces would’ve been perfect in a film from 1981 or 1982, and yet it still sounds like music that has has to find the right place and time, as if what is heard will exist in some fashion from now until a period in the future that will eventually become the past. I simply like that Hirobleep continues to explore, and I’m enjoying everything I’ve heard.

FREE MP3 DOWNLOAD: Hirobleep’s “NOX”

Hirobleep is making music faster than I can keep up, but that’s a good thing. NOX is the latest EP from him, mixing up a bit of techno and getting into a a bit of minimalism, which I like a lot. That 8bit vibe is still within, but it’s almost as if the “ghosts in the machine” realize they’ve grown up and want to explore. NOX is the playtime.

REVIEW: Shnabubula’s “NES JAMS”

Photobucket This is one of the more interesting 8-bit/chiptune releases I’ve heard, for it’s not just someone sampling from the original video games or creating music in the vein of 8-bit games, but it’s someone combining it with classical piano.

Shnabubula is the nom de plume for Samuel Ascher-Weiss, and his latest release is called NES Jams (Ubiktune), where he combines the soundtracks from various classic Nintendo video games and goes in and within them by playing piano over it. It may sound fair and simple, but when you hear what he does by interacting with the original melodies, it’s pretty amazing.

On this album you’ll hear new interpretations of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Contra, Little Nemo the Dream Master, Megaman 2, and Double Dragon. You may fondly remember the musical backdrops, and maybe you still play the original NES or an emulator, but it not only refreshes the original songs, but adds new twists as if you are discovering hidden worlds for the first time. In this case, it’s musical worlds. It had taken years for people to take video game music seriously, and NES JAMS takes things to an all new level. Game far from over.

REVIEW: Hirobleep’s “Gaijin”

Photobucket Last month, I had made Hirobleep my Bandcamp Suggestion and a month later, he has a new album out (well, it’s a 31 minute album, so a short album) with even more music for people to enjoy.

Gaijin is for fans of 8-bit and chiptune music, and while it might sound simple on digital paper, there’s a bit more thought going on in these tracks. Imagine smoking a lot of hash while playing video games at the arcade, you pull out a quarter, token, or look for more stolen one dollar bills from your mom’s purse, and then your hash-filled mind is now playing the currency. Gaijin comes close to that.

What does that mean? Well, any type of computer-generated music will lead to people saying it’s programmed, that it requires little to no human interaction. “Otaku” sounds like what would happen if Kraftwerk were given a bunch of effect pedals and they went crazy, while “Moshi-Moshi” manages to make you feel comfortable before the time signature goes from 4/4 to 3/4 out of nowhere, then back to 4/4. “Banzai” sounds like someone from the Taito factory discovering the VCS3 and saying “I can do better”. “Nanchatte” comes off like a bit of 8-bit action if it grew up in the streets of New Orleans, complete with deep bass frequencies that may mess up a few cars.

Basically, if you grew up loving music played by video games, and wondered how it could get so intricate and perhaps funkier like the other music you listen to, Hirobleep’s Gaijin is for you. What I enjoy about 8-bit/chiptune stuff is how a lot of artists are working out of the box even though its sound origins come from being made specifically to be in a box. Job well done.

(ADDITION: Hirobleep was nice enough to tell me that this recording was made using the Korg Monotribe.)


Photobucket This week’s suggestion was posted by Drew Miller of Northern Hemisphere, and as someone always looking for something new interesting, I went to check this out.

Hirobleep is credited as being from Germany, and if you hear his EP GOTO BASIC, you may hear hints of Kraftwerk, Yello, and a lot of electronic and synth-based music of the late 70’s and early 80’s, back when what they were doing was considered futuristic for the first generation of gamers. These tracks are funky too, so while you may want to groove like a robot, the sounds definitely dig deep and pulsate to where you may move parts of your body you didn’t know had rhythm. For fans of 8-bit chiptune music, this will be a trip.

VIDEO: Anamanaguchi’s “Mermaid (Scott Pilgrim version)”

Anamanaguchi – “Mermaid” / Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World – [music video] from Steven Grant on Vimeo.

Steven Grant is a video maker who is also a fan of Anamanaguchi and he said “hey, why not make a new video for one of my favorite songs, using a film I like?” That’s what Grant did when he pieced together elements of Scott Pilgrim vs. The World and placed Anamanaguchi’s “Mermaid” over it with great results.

VIDEO: Monster Violence’s “In The Cleft”

Monster Violence – In The Cleft (Official Video) from Monster Violence on Vimeo.

This is a new band to my ears called Monster Violence, and the duo (Dr. Byte und Mega Hurtz) are about to release a new EP (their second) in the next few weeks. “In The Cleft” is their first music video, and it looks like they know and enjoy what they’re doing.