Music? Of course, I love it. I have a truly eclectic taste in music – I consume everything from the crazy electronic tunes of Aphex Twin to classics like Shostakovich or even Gershwin. But there are styles that even my truly eclectic choice of tunes will not tolerate – things considered “music” by their fans but nothing but noise by the general public. Here are some that I’ve stumbled upon this year.
A small jazz club in my neighborhood organizes notable events every month, events with a very limited audience. People travel hundreds of miles to attend them. But, as the organizer told me once, they are most of the times far from being profitable. The artists are mostly unknown to the general public – but they appeal to a select group of fans. Among them you can find groups like A Gambler’s Hand, Euro African Playground and others.
I’ve tried to attend once, but – horribile dictu – all I could hear was noise. No wonder I spent the most of the concert outside, waiting for my friends and playing at the Royal Vegas online casino.
A genre with a strong influence on many popular music styles, but loved by just a few in its purest form. It is an experimental genre, emerged in the 1970s, with quite a following – especially in Europe. It is a bit like a mix of synthpop and metal, with a dash of electronica, experimental, jazz, post-punk and free improvisation added to it.
Some of the most notable names in this genre are the Nine Inch Nails, Skinny Puppy, White Zombie / Rob Zombie, Die Krupps, Kevorkian Death Cycle, and many others with equally depressing names.
Highly popular among my generation of computer players (those of us growing up playing on Commodore and Spectrum), chiptunes are the reminiscent of the early age of computer music generation. Chiptunes (the true ones) are made using either a vintage computer using a PSG sound chip, or an emulator of the above mentioned hardware. Chiptunes became the earworms of the gaming arcades in the 1980s, and invaded our homes with the help of personal computers. The style was captivating for players and music professionals alike. This led to the release of the first music tracking software in the mid-1980s, with forays into the mainstream music culture (Kenkraft 400’s Zombie Nation, released in 1999, is a remix of the Lazy Jones video game’s theme, released on C64 in 1984).
Today chiptunes are still popular among its fans. New tunes are continuously composed and released through compos and through the demoscene, but also through iTunes and Amazon.