Free Music Friday: Joe from video game music netlabel Pterodactyl Squad let us know about a new release, lpower’s Abinox:
The Canadian composer wanted to examine and explore how 16-bit video game soundtracks were put together in the old days, and he assembled a ‘super setup’ of nostalgic chips and synths (TurboGrafx-16, Sega Mega Drive/Genesis, NES, OSCar synth, Yamaha DX7) with which to do so.
The music on Abinox does not always loop, allowing lpower more freedom than usual to study the emotions of in-game progression, the ups and downs, victories and failures. So rather than focus on a specific storyline or genre, Abinox is actually a game soundtrack about game soundtracks.
If you took all the stuff we like – synthesizers, video games, open source software, etc – and combined them, you might get something like the Pianocade chiptunes style synthesizer & MIDI controller.
The Pianocade Synthesizer
The Pianocade is a synthesizer designed to sound, look, and feel like vintage arcade games.
The Pianocade’s built-in synthesizer is based on the sound hardware of the Nintendo NES and Game Boy (specifically, one of the square wave channels: it’s a monophonic square-wave synthesis engine with a 4-bit digital-to-analogue converter). Because it’s monophonic, it does what many early games did in lieu of chords: it cycles through the notes of the chord rapidly (arpeggiation).
The soundtrack music of John Carpenter has received the 8-bit treatment in a new tribute album.
“I remember you featured us when we released our Dark Side of the Moon 8-bit tribute,” writes reader Joe. “Pterodactyl Squad is back with an 8-bit tribute to John Carpenter.”
It’s All In The Reflexes is a John Carpenter tribute album, featuring the music of 8-bit artists, including R-Sunset, Comptroller, seal of quality, Videogame Orchestra, EvilWezil, Videovalvontaa, Lorenzo Music, OxygenStar, SLAW, arcadecoma. and Shrimps.
Sebastian Tomczak (Little Scale) has introduced GenMDM – a music interface for your vintage SEGA Genesis or Mega Drive console.
You can use GenMDM to make chiptunes using your favorite MIDI sequencing software or hardware.
GenMDM will appear as a MIDI output device on your Windows, Mac or Linux-based computer. GenMDM will respond to MIDI notes and MIDI CC data, and will give you a high degree of real time control over the sound chips inside of the SEGA console.
GenMDM is available for preorder for 85 AUD (~ 87 USD/67 EUR). First units are scheduled to be shipped in mid-May 2012.