chip tunes disco music review

Nanode – “Journey” Review

Chip disco time!

I do enjoy discovering new chiptune artists and Nanode, whilst being around for a while, is new to me. So there. Releasing “Journey” this year over on bandcamp – I was drawn in with the album artwork but stayed for the decent music.

“Discotheque” opens things with a straight forward disco number using a fairly standard chipset. Nanode spends time playing the the volume controls a lot through the second half fading various melodies in and out to try and create a pulsating feel. I’m not entirely sure if it works but it is certainly different. The pulsating feel of an onward journey though really comes home in “Reaver” where everything is so tightly wound together – there’s spaces of silence between the crisp drums, bass and sine waves and that gives the track a grande, stomping feel and you get really into it. “New Horizons” breaks out the arpeggios and some really fast paced melodies. It feels like we’ve stepped back in time chipset wise even though we haven’t. There’s so much going on with changes of tone, pitch, main voice and chord structure. I really like the way how the chord structures fold back on themselves.

“Neon” takes the drama a step further by giving things a suitably ancient Japanese feel with clashing cymbals like swords and some aggressive melodies in the minor key. There’s lots of big breakdowns and bass line effects that keep what’s initially a three note melody hustling and bustling. It’s a boss theme in waiting. “GLITCH” is exactly that – an inventive and clever mashup of loads of voice samples and weird warp effects pushed together into a distorted riff and the thickest bass line you could find. The closing track “Supernova Burst ft. Kommisar” has a completely different tone and feel so you can hear Kommisar’s influence. It’s brighter, more glittery and creates a wall of sound for you to get lost in rather than bit chunks. This will be a chip disco floor filler!

There’s some really interesting things at play in Nanode’s work. There’s some hints of experimental play behind really strong melodies and by being able to balance the two – we have a really strong chiptune EP to boogie on down to. One for the disco!

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