Category Archives: Underground Music

Amiga Demoscene alive and well in 2015!

Where did all these awesome pixel art pictures come from? From Bitfellas.org, that’s where! I stumbled across this site and it’s one of those places on the internet that after you find it, you have to spend like an hour just clicking around and exploring all the insanely cool and eccentric content lying deep within it’s pages.

If you don’t know what Demoscene is, well you’re probably on the wrong website, but just in case, Wiki defines it as ” The demoscene is an international computer art subculture that specializes in producing demos: small, self-contained computer programs that produce audio-visual presentations. The main goal of a demo is to show off programming, artistic, and musical skills.”

The Demoscene was quite big especially in the early 90s in the Amiga Computer heyday. You can still find hundreds of thousands of demos online. It’s not just confined to Amiga either, Bit Fellas feature Demoscene data from all platforms. They also have a huge art library, online radio, and a podcast. This is just a really really cool place. Check it out and explore for a while. You can tune in to the radio with this link. You’ll have to right click and save as then open it in VLC or iTunes or whatever media player you have installed.

Peter Baumann’s Strangers in the Night is basically the most 80s video in existence

Even though this video is over 30 years old, I’ve somehow never seen it until just now. Judging by how few views there are on this youtube video, it seems like it’s still pretty new to many.

Peter Baumann was one of the core members of the band Tangerine Dream, who of course spawned the amazing work of Klaus Schultz, but less known is the work of Baumann. Strangers in the Night is off of his album of the same name from 1983. It was his fourth solo album.

This song and video is essentially everything the modern Synthwave and Retrowave movement is doing amplified by a million and its video is a pure work of art. Its use of Video FX such as flying geometric shapes, smokey alleyways with perfect lighting, and an untra-serious looking Bauman staring off into the distance with a headset microphone is nothing but hilariously amazing.

Peter Bauman

What is Synthwave?

Synthwave is a type of electronic music that is mostly instrumental and heavily influenced by 1980s music, particularly 80s movie soundtrack instrumental pop songs, and is sometimes combined with elements of French House music. Many songs feature a sequenced saw wave synth bass line, with a huge reverberated and deep snare drum sound. This type of drum sound was very popular in the 80s.

It is generally upbeat but at times can go to more experimental territory. Similar types of music are also called Dreamwave, Retrowave, and Chillwave. The differences between these genres are small and pretty interchangeable.

It is a great type of music to listen to while driving, or in headphones while traveling around the city, since it provides a cool “soundtrack” to whatever may be taking place around you.

I really enjoy Synthwave and decided to put together a playlist of some of the best stuff out there as of 2015.

Enjoy!

is it 1985 or 2015? You decide!

 

The amazing 4D Sound System is a Nicola Tesla inspired fully immersive audio experience

This completely amazing place in Amsterdam is taking live audio into a whole new territory. What is it? well imagine electronic music performers being able to send any sound to any position of the room at any time they want. Imagine being able to make sounds fall from the ceiling or bounce off the walls at their command. Imagine sounds crawling around on the floor by your feet then zooming up to your head and spinning around in circles!

4D sound system

This is basically what can happen in the 4D sound system. This specially designed room features 16 columns of omni-directional sound drivers and 9 subs under the floor. There’s specially designed software that allows the performer to interact with the room in real-time and creates a unique space that is part club and part sound art installation. This is truly advanced thinking in terms of digital audio performance.

I need to go to this place!

4D sound system 2

 

Check out these videos for more details on this technology. Too bad there’s no way to really hear it on our computers. Looks like we’ll all need to go there.

Rick Fresco performs on two Midi fighter 3Ds while wearing a calculator watch

Despite trying to look cool with the sunglasses, I would like to believe a guy like this is a nerd at heart. You’d have to be if you’re playing midi controllers made of video game buttons. Lets get one thing straight, when I say Nerd, that’s a complement. The last thing you want me calling you is a cool guy. Oh yeah, he’s also wearing a calculator watch which is nerd to the max.

Anyway, Mr. Rick Fresco is completely amazing at playing these MIDI fighter 3D controllers. I’m not sure I’d like the buttons over pads, but maybe. Never tried one myself. Definitely check out this video though.

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