Disasterpeace is one of the kings of chiptune goodness and with the album “Strays” he flexes his muscles once more with a breezy collection of tunes.
“Gun Gun Gun” opens the thirteen track collection with a strong melody and stomping snare drum that reminds me of a relaxed Space Harrier tune. It has a real get up and go to it despite its relaxed nature. “”Demon” Door” follows with a very unusual drum and time signature where in places the track slows it’s tempo for just one of the four beats in the bar. This tempo distortion is strange, awkward and although it certainly stands out I would have preferred this melody to have been delivered straight. “That’s Mr. Coconut to You” however is straight in its chirpy delivery. Sounding every bit like an 8 bit era chiptune it has glitch drums and several thick melody layers drenching the bouncy bass line. It’s a real joy to listen to.
“Welcome to Space” is a short interlude before “Me and Myself” rolls onto the speakers in an unrolling spillage of ever descending chords and arpeggios lethargically crashing to the floor. It’s such a short track but it’s amazing what’s packed into it. “We Are a Small But Peaceful Community” is too short for its own good to as it’s rousing slow percussion over a pulsating bass really feels like it could burst into a lets-take-em-all track but it stops before it does. “Drats, Rats and Bats” swings into the fray instead with a great hook and a humanistic swing to the rhythm but again I wish it was built on further to be a fully fledged track. “Tres” follows a similar thought as the synth sample changes completely to a more sine based dubstep vibe. ”Oasix” returns to the usual chipset which irks the previous song onto its own even more for another short interlude before the cute and simple “Mr Stomps” skips playfully with synth woodwind being played like pizzicato strings. It will not fail to make you peaceful.
After a clutch of songs too short “Marco Tannenbaumgartner” returns to a decent song length with a fully fleshed out track. It’s full of cute embellishments and the kinds of drum fills and bass lines you come to love from Disasterpeace. “Happy Birthday” is a cover of the great track itself before “Like the Sun and the Moon” ends the album with a detuned ever descending chord melody. Almost each track will show a unique picture in the mp3 player too which is a nice touch.
Strays in a strange album because it’s over in 28 minutes and I really wished it wasn’t. Some of the shorter tracks in the middle of the album sound like great ideas that aren’t given enough time to bare their fruits. Sometimes I say that if an album leaves you wanting more and more it’s because the album is amazing. Here it’s because there wasn’t enough to satisfy me.