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Press Release - December 21, 2011
Following what many considered to be the surprise announcement in September of the first Australian chipmusic festival "Blip Festival Australia," 8bitpeoples in association with Melbourne's SoundBytes are excited to unveil the first round line up for this very special chipmusic event.
Some of chipmusic's best known names will be among the two day lineup of 19 audio-visual artists - including co-organisers Bit Shifter and Nullsleep - co-founders of 8bitpeoples, one of the world's best known chipmusic labels, and well known and loved performers in their own right. Co-founder of Blip Festival, Mike Rosenthal had the following to say "There is a really thriving chip scene in Australia that we've been admiring from afar for several years. We figured it was time to stop simply exporting their talent to the other Blip Festivals worldwide and instead come join the party".
The majority of Australia's first chipmusic festival will take place over the 17th and 18th of February, at one of Melbourne's best known live music venues, The Evelyn Hotel in Brunswick, with additional events that include workshops and an open mic to not only give up-and-coming chip musicians the opportunity to strut their stuff but to also allow those new to the emerging style the opportunity to learn for themselves the fundamentals of working with gaming consoles to create music.
Chipmusic is the art of using home computers and antiquated video game consoles to create fresh and innovative music in a wide variety of styles. Despite having its roots in video game music and then later in sample based synthesis utilising software such as the Commodore Amiga in the 80s, it has had a huge surge in popularity in Australia in recent years. A big reason for the surge of popularity for this growing style is the regular chipmusic shows happening around Australia - the longest running of these being SoundBytes, the creators of which, Kristy Dossor and Eugene Davoren-Britton are also involved in bringing Blip Festival to Australia.
In addition to Bit Shifter and Nullsleep, a wide selection of international and local artists are heading to Melbourne to take part in the festival. From the US comes one of the best known chipmusic artists and veteran of multiple Blip Festival appearances Trash80 as well as first time Blip festival visualist Batsly Adams. Several artists from Europe will also be making the long trip to Australia - the man of many monikers, Germany's Patric Catani, a highlight of Blip festival New York in 2009 will be joined by the United Kingdom's Lazerbeat and _ensnare_, both of whom will be performing at Blip Festivals for the first time. A little closer to home will be Saitone and Hally from Japan. The two, who are some of Japan's longest active performers, have both appeared at multiple Blip Festivals.
These international artists join the cream of Australia's local chipmusic crop: Ten Thousand Free Men & Their Families (SYD), Abortifacient (SYD), little-scale (ADE), Derris-Kharlan (MEL) and dot.AY (BNE) as well as Sydney visualist iLKke and the very exciting launch of the highly anticipated audio-visual experience 7bithero by Brisbane's Hunz.
A second round of audio visual performers is expected in coming weeks to fill out the promised "19" artists.
SoundBytes co-founder, Eugene Davoren-Britton said "There are some exceptionally exciting artists on the line up, and we are especially excited to be bringing many of the artists not just to Australia for the first time, but also to their first Blip Festival performances. We have a bill full of heavy hitting veterans of multiple Blip Festivals as well as fresh new talent that Australian music fans are going to love". Co-organiser Kristy Dossor said. "It's a really exciting bill, we have such a variety of genres represented from such a wide variety of backgrounds and nationalities, that there is something to whet everyone's appetite, even those who are new to chipmusic and may not have had exposure to specific artists bodies of work - some of which is quite honestly, prolific."
Davoren-Britton added, "Some of these guys have been making music since before there was a name for "chipmusic" and many of them are well known as leaders within the chip community. Bringing them all together for an event like this is not only going to make for a fantastic live music experience, it's going to be a great learning experience for locals who may not have had this kind of exposure to so many talented artists at one time, not to mention the international audience who will be able to tune into our web stream."
Tickets for the Festival will go on sale through the Blip Festival Australia website on January 9th at 10am EDT.
More information about the festival, including updates on the satellite events taking place during February will be made available on the Blip Festival Australia website http://australia.blipfestival.org. Up to the minute updates will be available on twitter (@BlipFestival) and on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/soundbytesoz and http://www.facebook.com/8bitpeoples.
Bit Shifter - Blip NY 2007. Photo by Chiptography
Nullsleep - Blip NY 2008. Photo by Chiptography
Ten Thousand Free Men & Their Families - Blip NY 2011. Photo by Chiptography
Patric Catani - Blip NY 2009. Photo by Chiptography
Hally - Blip NY 2009 - Backers Party. Photo by Chiptography
Press Release - September 20, 2011
Melbourne, VIC - February 17 and 18, 2012: For the first time, the 8bitpeoples collective and record label in conjunction with the promoters of Melbourne's regular chipmusic nights 'SoundBytes', will bring the world's premiere chipmusic festival to the Southern Hemisphere, following the announcement today of "Blip Festival Australia."
The local promoters of the festival, Kristy Dossor & Eugene Davoren-Britton have been bringing chipmusic events to Australia via their regular "SoundBytes" show for the last three years; and February's event sees them joining forces with New York's '8bitpeoples' to co-ordinate a two day festival that will showcase artists from all over the world, as well as Australia. Dossor said, "Blip Festival Australia is something that has been in the back of our minds for over 3 years now, and with the gaining popularity of the scene both here in Australia and around the world, we are very excited to bring what will be a world-class line-up of chipmusic names to Melbourne, many of whom have never played in Australia before."
In addition to two nights of live audio-visual performances, the festival will feature a variety of satellite events such as workshops and talks at venues around Melbourne's inner-suburbs.
The Blip Festival is an international cultural event which, in past years has taken place in Japan and Scandinavia as well as its New York home. It focuses on the chipmusic scene - musicians and artists who use low bit computer and videogame consoles to deliver arresting audio-visual performances.
Davoren-Britton said "This is the first time a chipmusic event of this size has taken place in the Southern Hemisphere and we're very excited that it will happen in Melbourne. We are finalizing an amazing line-up that features artists that are well known not only in chipmusic circles, but also in the greater music community and cannot wait to share who they are."
8bitpeoples has been running since 1999 and is administrated by Joshua Davis (Bit Shifter) and Jeremiah Johnson (Nullsleep), who have performed over 300 shows combined worldwide. Over 120 EPs have been released on the label, spanning a broad spectrum of not only musical styles, but also artist locations. SoundBytes is Australia's longest running, regular, live chipmusic series featuring artists from all over Australia and overseas. The festival has been assisted by the Australian Government through the Australian council for the Arts, its arts funding and advisory body.
The festival will take place at The Evelyn Hotel, Brunswick St, Fitzroy on the 17th and 18th of February, 2012. Artist announcements and ticket sales will begin later this year. More concert and ticket information will be available at http://australia.blipfestival.org.