Friday, December 18, 2009

Blip '09 Writeup #1 (Silreq, Failotron, Leeni, Minusbaby, Chromix, JDDJ3J, Albino Ghost Monkey, Eat Rabbit)

Wow, what an interesting experience was last night's Blip! Well, let's get right to it.

First up was Silent Requiem (Silreq), who seemed to be trying his hardest to detonate the sound system. Very heavy on the bass, the percussion (white noise with envelopes = percussion), and other noise. It was a bit like a DJ set because he didn't stop the music, he didn't say anything, he just played some crazy hard music. As I said to Ethan (look in the comments on these entries, chances are decent you'll see that name), "It's good music to show off the sound system". It was a great opening act, and it got the crowd a little bit energized, but nothing like what was to come.

Next was Failotron, from Budapest, Hungary. He spent his sound check strumming a guitar and playing with the delay and stuff, then set the guitar down and told the crowd "I just wanted to test this guitar, I won't be using it". He plays Hullamzoret Two first, which of course I loved! But then, I think it was a couple songs later that he went to play a track the name of which escapes me, it was discovered his LSDJ save had corrupted! So he gets the privelage of playing at Blip '09 in New York, flies there from Eastern Europe, he is about to play what he called his "FAVORITE SONG"!!!! And the cart died! It was... The saddest thing I've ever seen. But he got his "Commodore Advanced" (his laptop), and we got to jam out to it anyway. The buildups he writes are just fantastic, and the guitar/drum/gameboy trifecta didn't fail to disappoint.

Third, Leeni, a singer-songwriter girl from Seattle, was a radical departure from the rest of the night. I felt like she was disappointed in the crowd for not dancing as much as she'd like us to, and I empathize. You want your Blip show to be as good as it can be! But the thing to realize is that chiptune crowds usually consist of a lot of head-bobbers and toe-tappers. And that's what the crowd did, though slightly harder once she hinted that we were "allowed to dance" and whatever else. The music was nice; melodic and soft, if I had to pick two words, but it didn't get the crowd moving. Ah well!

Next up was Minusbaby. His set garnered a lot of interest before he went on because he had been wandering the club handing out 3D glasses to be worn during his set. The visuals were, as such, rendered with the red and pale blue offset instantly recognizable as 3D, and the beats he laid down were fantastically heavy. It got the crowd moving, but I'd say "pulsing" would be the more accurate term. A lot of movement, but no jumping around or thrashing. Also, those super-low triangle waves... Oh man. It was an all-around intense experience.

Chromix played after, with nothing on stage but him, his GBA SP, and a mic. His set was rad, and he was dancing as hard as anyone else in the room. It was during this set that people really got going, as his fast-paced beats and the amount of energy he was exuding inspired a lot of jumping, thrashing, and yelling. Oh what power the Game Boy holds! He played a rad cover of Chemical Plant Zone from Sonic 2, the highlight of his set for me, as well as plenty of his own original creations which consist of a lot of fast kick-drum and... Noise I guess? Melodies were there, but the spotlight was not on them. It was about the jam.

With Chromix's set done, the crowd was peaking. The music was getting more and more energetic each set, and the next artist, Je Deviens DJ En Trois Jours (I/I've/I'll Become A DJ In Three Days depending on the tense) has a bit of a reputation as making killer party music. He treated the Game Boys like turntables, and it was during this set that people started crowd surfing and the entire audience was jumping around like mad. Also, he was overpowering the system or a cord was unplugging or something, because periodically in his set the noise would cut out completely, with the crowd giving a huge "AWWWWWWWW" every time. But then the problem would be resolved, the music instantly back to its strength, and the crowd was pulled right back in. It was a great set, and JDDJ3J is an excellent performer who knows how to frenzy up a crowd.

Following that act was Albino Ghost Monkey. I'd retreated back to the front room, mostly because it was close to the door and hence some degrees cooler, when I heard the between-sets music cut out and our friend the pale tarsier took the stage. He played very intense music, probably the hardest dance music all night, and got the crowd present absolutely frothing. There was almost perpetually someone on top of the crowd, it was at this point that glow-sticks and other blinking, glowing rave-toys appeared in the crowd, and he was dancing just as hard as he could, so of course the crowd went berserk! He kept telling the crowd he loved them, and I'm sure he made quite a few friends after his set last night. As for me, though, I'd been at the edge of the stage all night, so I just watched all this happen from a distance and had a drink.

Closing out the first night of Blip was EAT RABBIT, a French guy who I would feel comfortable describing as "insane". I mean, he's not really, but his sense of aesthetics is pretty out there. He wore a suit and tie with a big bunny head mask, and his music was like deranged carnie tunes. Regardless, the crowd loved it, and at one point during what sounded like a hardstyle polka, the crowd started chanting "HEY" on every offbeat while I assume they kicked their legs forward and crossed their arms. Hey, we'll make do with whatever music the artists give us!

All in all, the first night of Blip was, I think, successful! It was interesting how heavily documented the event was, with 2PP's camera crew all over the stage, no shortage of cameras, and the entire event being streamed online. I suspect that for those of you that didn't get to attend Blip '09, you'll be able to pretty much "get the idea" from some DVD that will go on sale in a while.

Also, no tracks today, sorry. I'm going to just save up and catch up on music when I get back! Like, I'll post... What, five songs? Something like that. Anyway! Seeya tomorrow for Writeup #2!

1 comment:

  1. Excellent summation, Curt. I "get the idea" from your words without even hearing anything (yet) from Blip 09. I'll check out some of those streams when I get home tonight. Work isn't the place for me to unleash such noise.