Svolkraq/Gollum – “Sound O’ Da Lunatic”
Released in 1994, this track came out of nowhere to blast+win the Gathering ’94 party in Norway. Svolkraq was a relatively unknown Norwegian PC composer who decided to drop down to .MOD for this wonderful guitar-based track, all composed and sampled by himself. Actually, this is about the only thing Svolkraq’s known for on the 4-channel .MOD scene, and it’s still amazing that it all fits in 310k, despite the big samples and gorgeous sounds. Classic, classic track, well worth grabbing in nostalgia or discovery.
Captain/Image – “Space Debris”
From fairly early on in the Amiga’s life, the Finnish composer Captain, later known on the real-life pop-music scene as part of the ‘poptastic’ Dance Nation, managed to win the Assembly demo-competition in 1991 (?) with this classic .MOD, “Space Debris”. It’s the epitome of the smooth .MOD synth style, and done very early on, too, before most musicians had developed the skills to blast out this custom catchiness and were still playing with st-00 samples! Both memorable and classic, a deserved addition..
Bruno/Scup – “B.S.T”
Bruno/Scup is another of the Finnish .MOD pioneers, and his use of realistic-sounding, crazily jazzy, offbeat samples and melodies, as well as crazy riffing and time-changes, made his songs stick out as waaay ahead. From his “Bruno’s Music Box 3” release in around 1991, just before he disappeared from the Amiga scene forever, here’s one of his all-time classics, “B.S.T”, which stands for.. well, look at the song-text, lots of different things! 10 years ago, this was amazing, and time has dulled none of the style.
Static/Rebels – “Total Triple Trouble”
Static/Rebels will forever be known for the music to the classic proto-rave demo that is “Coma”. Forget “Jesus On E’s” and all those other pale imitations, “Coma” was the real deal. And the follow-up demo, Rebels’ “Total Triple Trouble”, featuring this song, was, astoundingly, even better. It delighted eager watchers way back in ’91 with great full-screen (digitised, but stylishly lo-fi!) animated effects like the blinking eye, all set to a devilishly cut-up visual style and this amazing soundtrack, also called “Total Triple”, all beeps, frantically re-trigging percussion and whoops of joy.
Jester/Sanity – “Stardust Memories”
From the absolutely classic “World Of Commodore” demo from about 1992, just when the German demo-group Sanity were hitting full stride with the majesty of their coder Chaos and some other excellent musicians like Virgill, this classic Volker Tripp (aka Jester) track pretty much epitomises his style – punchy, well-produced, and above all, catchy! The songname is taken from a Woody Allen movie, but there’s really not much Allen-esque about the track, which is refreshingly straightahead – it’ll have you whistling it for years to come!
Shorty/Network – “Digital Expression”
Again, right back in ’91, this particular subtle guitar+pipes track from Shorty, a Norwegian composer and cohort of Jogeir Liljedahl, was considered gorgeous and way ahead of its time. Nowadays, it sounds subtly brilliant still, and wonderfully nostalgic, and totally deserved to win the music competition at the Amega Party in Porsgrunn, which also featured classic demos like PMC’s “Alpha And Omega” and TSL’s “Ice”, whose Audiomonster soundtrack we’ve mentioned elsewhere round here… oldskool all the way.
Jugi/Complex – “Tubular Vectors”
This time round, a classic from Jugi, who’s been hanging around the Amiga and PC scene for way over 10 years now, and currently provides backroom-boffinship for the great Aisth, but this classic track, from the Taipan-coded Complex “Vector Preview” demo in 1990, a demo which seemed spectacularly advanced for its time (multiple vector X-Wings? rawk!), also cut the mustard with regards to a wickedly catchy synth sound with minimum cheesiness. Just right..
Frog/DOC – “Demons Are Forever”
Some people have commented that MODs In Memoriam isn’t quite oldskool _enough_ sometimes, and we’re happy to correct this view with Frog’s classic tune from one of the first Amiga demos ever, “Demons Are Forever” (mm, bobs morphing into demons!), from back in about 1988. With most of the ST-00 sample-disc waveforms still in place in this tune, and a great+funky end-result to boot Bong88 Bongdaso, this is the bedrock from which was hewn the next 10 years of classic .MODs 🙂
Oxide/Sonik – “Agnostic”
Anything related to the demo-group Sonic (later Sonik Clique) simply oozes class, especially with their best-ever line-up of chip musicians (Stargazer, Maza, Oxide, Grim, Organic, *DROOL*), and this Oxide track from 1993 or so is no exception. Not even bothering with any drums, it’s pure retro flava, with lots and lots of swooping synth bends and almost SID-like percussion. You can tell Sonik musicians (all Finnish, btw) took the C64 ball and ran with it, and the synthetic results are wonderful to listen to even nowadays. Not sure where this was used in – since it’s called Agnostic, something to do with an Agnostic Front demo/intro/cracktro, maybe?
Monty/Analog – “Mario, Sometimes”
Coming out of France, Monty/Analog, who also hung out in a bunch of other groups (including Paradox, Angels, Scoopex, Equinox, Interpol, Us – thanks to the man himself for filling me in!) is one of those semi-famous but exceptionally good chip-musicians, and this track, from 1992, is darn funky, has great segues and middle sequences, and isn’t actually a conversion of anything Mario-related in the slightest, heh. Finally, note the shout-outs in the song-text to some of the coolest French scene-mafia of the time (Nam, Reflex, Alex, Reverse..) – the boy got connections. 😛
Bass/TSL – “Dicky Faty Loremy”
From the Silents Germany enclave that sprung up in about 1991, releasing the rather excellent “Static Chaos” demo before disappearing almost as fast (something about some of them getting busted?), this smart chiptune from Bass, aka Patrick Lindsey, shows off his rather rockin’ freestyle approach to sharp, funky chiptunes. From then on, after playing some semi-pro basketball (!), he got into the German techno scene, releasing stuff on classic German label, Harthouse. But from his early .MOD days, this is a really fun+funky piece of kq xsmb chiphoprisy..
Hi-Lite/TRSI – “Purple Shades”
Another crack-tune favorite, this from Hi-Lite of S!P (Surprise Productions) of TRSI – yep, a subgroup of a group, how confusing. Anyhow, Hi-Lite is renowned mainly for his chip-tunes, and was also in Scoopex too at some point, later contributing to the TRSI Records hardtrance CDs alongside Scorpik, Dreamfish and others. But this relatively early, supremely catchy effort (about 1992, was it?) is a great example of a chip-tune, only 5k zipped, and superbly bouncy. We like, we like a lot..
Random Voice – “Monday”
One of those classic chip-tunes that you know you’ve heard a million times, but can’t quite place (did this appear in a bunch of crack-intros? please advise!), “Monday” is a wonderful piece of arpegiating class from Edvin Fladen, all the way from Norway, and was released wayback in ’91. In any case, Random Voice later joined Symbiosis under his real name and contributed to Bjorn Lynne’s classic floppy-disc musicmag, AM/FM, but this is the only tune he’s particularly known for, and we, frankly, adore it.
Mel-O-Dee/DCS – “Trainer Or Die”
Not related to the Finnish Mellow-D (who later turned into fm+tpolm mainstay, md), this Mel-O-Dee was a German chip-musician who seems to have come from a rich C64 heritage, and it certainly shows in this classic crack-intro-styled tune, probably for a game ‘trainer’ allowing you infinite lives and so on daftar sbobet online, hence the name and the speech sample! Actually pretty large for a chip-tune (55k uncrunched!), but we’ll let him off this time, since it’s so cool, huh? 🙂
TDK/Melon Design – “Russian Theme”
TDK/Melon, aka Mark Knight, was always in the top echelon of early, catchy chip-composers, and his work with the geniuses at Melon on their tiny and brilliant Crystal crack-intros was without compare, as was this particular soundtrack to the “Tetris Intro” by Melon, a phenomenal 40k intro from back in ’91..