A huge part of the charm of Animata games are Dva’s soundtracks. With their latest crazy madcap point and click puzzler Chuchel, Dva are let completely off the rails to create one of the most unique and bonkers collections of music I’ve had the pleasure to enjoy.
Chuchel’s 23 tracks all stem from the voice, the ukelele, playful toy pianos, hand claps and childlike instruments you’d find in a “my first instrument” child’s club. Dva then pop it all in a blender and turn up the blade to full speed. There are recurring themes but generally, it’s just madness. “Chuchlegg” for example has a thick rubber bass line, nasal like vocal growls and sunshine blowy ooh’s whilst keyboards and mechanical drums smash metal sounds about before an emergency siren solo. This is one of the most normal tracks! “CHVCHLS” takes an 80’s computer game, turns all the notes into portamento riffs and goes at 150 bpm with crazy scatting lyrical noises. “Chuchel Walk With Me” sounds like a slow-motion fairground teacup ride crossed with an Elvis ballad. “Nino Chuchel” reminds me the crazy vocal group Visa Roster and their vocal only game music arranges. “Kin-Dza-Bab” on the otherhand is a comedy track you’d only find here outside of a Katamari game. The sense of style, drama, comedy and energy throughout the entire soundtrack is stunning and superb.
What really sets Dva’s ability to create chaos and joy together is that whatever they create has a rhythm and flow to it. Yes, it’s made with bizarre noises, screams, quirks and whistles – but it has a groove and pattern to it that grounds all the weirdness into something you can get your teeth into. You’ll find new noises and instruments on multiple listens and there’s always a human element in all the drama. I would discuss Dva’s Chuchel soundtrack in more detail, but it’s one of those times where I’m going to discuss things less so you have the element of surprise and wonder.
Whereas Botanicula was sublime is its acoustic forest faun gone Teletubbies way, Chuchel is like a carnival of unhinged delights – with an awesome drum machine and a lady doing vocal gymnastics over the top. I love it.
Recommended track: “Cherry, I Love You So Much”