On 16th June 2012 at 00:40 Chris Grey wrote...
The reviewed single is here:
By Helgeland 8-bit Squad
Chiptune" or "8-bit music" is a funny old scene. Some of us may be unfortunate enough to remember the likes of Tetris charting, but there has been a revival in recent years and plenty of mainstream artists are using 8-bit sounds in their music. Chiptune first spawned from the theme music of early console games and was originally made using bastardised chips from Gameboy and NES consoles. Although now it is more commonly simulated using computer software.
Given the high pitched tendencies of chip tunes, I was somewhat surprised to stumble across Helgeland 8-bit Squad, self styled laptop reggae warriors operating out of Trondheim in Norway. Their Soundcloud page is full of innovative and fun remixes and originals, including a wonderful version of Too Many Rappers released in tribute to the late great MCA.
Their latest EP, Fresh Riddims & Dubs is a three track free download available now from their Soundcloud page. I've been amazed at the depth and variety of music Helgeland have put out and it continues on this release.
Three super tracks that layer wonderful deep, grooving basslines under chiptune styling. It really doesn't sound like it should work, but in the capable hands of Helgeland you are left wondering why no one has ever done it before.
Kessell Run Riddim (great name for a track) immediately gets you hooked with a sublime bass opening. Abbraxas Riddim has a great melody and beat. Whereas Omskolering mixes things up with a smart sample. The production is nothing short of superb and the tracks are all just perfect to kick back and unwind to, just like reggae should be. If Mario was a b-boy, this is what he would be listening to after a hard day stomping koopa troopers!
If you like your reggae, or if you just like quirky, well produced, fun music that has made with a whole lot of love then you won't go far wrong with heading over to Soundcloud and checking out Fresh Riddims & Dubs and some of the other Helgeland 8-bit Squad goodness on offer.