Artist Spotlight: VJ Entter

As we hurtle ever-faster to SuperByte 2015, J3WEL caught up with VJ Enterr ahead of his visuals performance at this year’s festival.

Tell us a bit about yourself, where are you from and how long have you been performing visual arts for?

I was born in the north of Spain and been living in Barcelona lately. I’ve been doing visuals and performing with Raquel Meyers and Goto80 (2006-2007) and later with Meneo (2007-2015).

I also did other shows and did visuals for DJs but yeah I guess I’m more known for these two collaborations…

As far as I remember my first show was along Goto80 in Elektro Circus Festival 2006 near Avignon in France, and my last upcoming show it’s this Sonar by Night Barcelona the saturday at 4:00 in the morning on the 20th of June haha.

How do you make your visuals, what software/hardware do you use to make your signature visuals and why?

I use whatever, I mean I get footage from different sources even games and software and hacking techniques and then join all together in my VJ homemade app on Adobe Flash. I’m not really into hardware… I use a lot of emulators and software and I do pixelated images.

Who are your main influences (if any) and what/who sparked your passion for creating visuals?

Well, I guess my deep influences are painters since I started studying painting at fine arts school, anyway I like hundreds of visual artists from the past and now… from Goya and Buñuel to Jodi and Eboy.

How are you feeling about performing at SuperByte this year?

I’m very excited to be in Manchester for my first time and meet a bunch of old friends, make new ones, rock the place and drink gin and tonics.

Artist Spotlight: RoccoW

Next up in our 2015 Artist Spotlight series, J3WEL had a chat with EINDBAAS member and Gameboy wizard RoccoW.

*Photo by Chiptography

Tell us a bit about yourself, where are you from and how long have you been writing music for?

I’m from the Netherlands and I’ve been making chipmusic since early 2010. I started out with basic 8bit plugins for FruityLoops, but found out shortly after that people were actually making music on the hardware itself! And after witnessing it in a live setting at the EINDBAAS shows, I was absolutely hooked! I was like “Yeah, I wanna do THAT!”

How do you make your music, what software/hardware do you use to make your signature sound and why?

I mainly use LSDJ on the Nintendo Gameboy, but have also made music for the NES using Famitracker, and GBA using Nanoloop. The Gameboy, for me, is the most easy platform to make music with and because I’ve gotten the hang of the workflow, I mostly use that. I like the expansion chips and DPCM samples in Famitracker a lot, though! It’s been very interesting having more space for melodies, though I feel I still have a lot to learn regarding NES music.

Who are your main influences (if any) and what/who sparked your passion for creating music?

Seeing JDDJ3J play live at EINDBAAS must have been the point where I decided I wanted to perform music live using the Gameboy. But regarding musical styles, I don’t really know what “influenced” me. I like playful melodies! I like funk, swing, soul and all that kind of music, old and new. But I’m also a fan of more electronic genres, like techno, deep house, electro, etc. Video game music played a role as well, for sure, though I wouldn’t associate any of the stuff I play at live shows with video game music.

How are you feeling about performing at SuperByte this year?

Duuude, it’s hard to even comprehend that I’ve been offered the chance to play with the acts that are performing! Some of these guys, I’ve been listening to them since the final years of 8bitcollective, like Ultrasyd, IAYD and Danimal Cannon. I remember streaming the heck out of Minusbaby and Rymdkraft on LastFM when I had only discovered the term ” chiptune”! I was blown away by their music then, and I’m still extremely impressed with what they, and other artists in the line-up are doing with their music! But I would’ve never imagined that I’d be allowed to play a show like SuperByte, with a line-up like this! I’ll be honest, I still get starstruck when meeting chiptune acts! It’s a great opportunity to have a talk with the faces behind these aliases, let alone play the same show!

Artist Spotlight: For Astronauts and Satellites

Next up in our 2015 Artist Spotlight series, J3WEL had a chat with For Astronauts and Satellites ahead of their show at SuperByte this September.

Tell us a bit about yourself, where are you from and how long have you been writing music for?

We’re a 3 piece Postrock/Chiptune band from the South East, spread between Hampshire, Berkshire and Surrey. We’ve actually been writing music together for almost a decade, but in a different band. We started FAAS as us 3 around mid to late 2013, and put our first album out in the summer of 2014.

How do you make your music, what software/hardware do you use to make your signature sound and why?

We use 2 Gameboys running LSDj, a C64 running Cynthcart, and (a recent addition), MIDINES. Ontop of that we have drums and 2 guitars, and delay and reverb plugged in to pretty much everything. As a band we try to write as organically as possible, letting songs dictate where and how they should go, usually starting with a core idea and then jamming until we’re happy. The idea can be anything, a guitar idea, a chip idea… We just chase them down!

Who are your main influences (if any) and what/who sparked your passion for creating music?

Main mutual influences are mostly Postrock, Alternative Prog bands and Ambient songwriters, ranging from This Will Destroy You, 65daysofstatic and Russian Circles, to Oceansize, Starscream and Eluvium. Bands such as Reuben play a massive part in influencing our sound and in sparking our passion for music, with our first band intially coming together with their sound in mind. Personally, bands such as Sigur Ros turned my interest to the more ethereal and ambient sound, but i’ll always approach it leaning towards the rock in Postrock!

How are you feeling about performing at SuperByte this year?

Bloody great! Really looking forward to meeting and listening to the other performers, and playing to a crowd hungry for chips (and/or Chiptune). We started this year out playing MAGFest over in the States, so are really looking forward to taking to the stage at another festival!

June Retro Gaming Night at MSP

The second in this years series of RetroGame nights is taking place on the 18th June in the Greenhey’s Atrium at Manchester Science Partnerships’ site.

The events have gone down a storm with both customers and game enthusiasts in Manchester alike, so we’re keeping them going, making it bigger and better each time as we lead up to our big warm up event with MSP on September 3rd!

Similar to the previous event, the guys from Zero2Death will be around hosting three tournaments throughout the evening, which you can sign up for on the night. This time, the tournaments will be on Crash Bash, Diddy Kong Racing and some surprise Street Fighter style games – only more retro!

As well as bringing a selection of consoles and games along for your entertainment, including 8, 16 and 32 bit favourites, some sweet multiplayer set-ups and big screen projected systems, MSP will be providing free pizza and beers for all gamers, so in order for us to make sure we have enough, please sign up here.

SuperByte 2015 Open Stage Lineup

We’re delighted to announce the successful applicants to our 2015 Open Stage at our pre-party.

*Photo by Chiptography

This year we’ll see sets from:

Congratulations if you made it through, and apologies if you didn’t – as usual, demand way outstripped the number of available places. As well as sets from these artists, we’ll also have a special set by 2xAA, DJ sets and more so don’t miss it!

Artist Spotlight: Rymdkraft

In the first of our Artist Spotlight’s leading up to SuperByte 2015, J3WEL had a chat with Rymdkraft ahead of his show this September.

Tell us a bit about yourself, where are you from and how long have you been writing music for?

I’m from Sweden and I’ve been making music for quiiiite a while, ever since I found a fresh Atari 520STFM underneath the Christmas tree as a kid.

How do you make your music, what software/hardware do you use to make your signature sound and why?

Up until recently I was tracking 100% (grew up with noisetracker on the Atari, to FT2 on PC and then Renoise, which all of Kantarelle EP was made in) but nowadays I mainly use Ableton Live. I’ve got my gameboy and an Atari STE ready, but really my main weapons are Sylenth(!), Plogue’s Chipsounds and KHS One.

Who are your main influences (if any) and what/who sparked your passion for creating music?

My main influences stems from demoscene style music (ppl like Radix, Xyce, Malmen) but nowadays I’ve been amazed over what people are doing that are more chip-influenced than actually chip, like the works of Meganeko, Dunderpatrullen, Nanobii or the new stuff from Bossfight – all awesome Swedish producers taking everything to a new level, refreshing everything. As for what sparked the influence.. I was probably the only kid in my school who actually recorded and listened to game/demo music from my C64 and Atari instead of whoever was popular back then. I wonder how many time I listened to Ocean Loader 2, Mad Max or Count Zero’s tracks on my way to school…

How are you feeling about performing at SuperByte this year?

I’M SO INCREDIBLY STOKED! This has been an incredible year for me, performing in Belgium and a bunch of times in Sweden as well as Japan coming up later on, add to that going to the UK to play (and for a festival of this kind) is a freakin life goal! So many awesome people playing there that I can’t wait to meet either! PREPARE TO HAPPY-DANCE! (And pls do have a beer with me!)