Attention please! We are looking for a new writer!

電波の世界 started in December 2007 and while our passion for the genre has only increased over the years, it's been difficult to find time for new articles and features. That's why we (denpanosekai and mandichan) are looking for an enthusiastic new writer! Here are some typical articles and tasks:

※ album previews and reviews
※ event reports (comiket, M3, live, etc.)
※ artist spotlights and interviews
※ denpa watchlist renewal
※ a new theme would be nice!

Do you want to make a difference and contribute to the original and leading source for English denpa news worldwide? Please contact denpanosekai [at] gmail [dot] com today!

Sunday, 29 November 2009

Hey Jack! Don't forget about COSMODRIVER's new album

October 2009 saw the release of the first full length album from コスモドライバー (cosMoDRIVER), a brand new chip-pop duo featuring two highly active niconico artists. HIGEDRIVER was briefly mentioned late last year when he composed a song on Saori@destiny's first album, as well as contributed tracks to the superb Picomoe compilation series. It's hard not to like the dude with such great chiptune skills and his iconic image borrowed from Super Mario Bros. He has quite a number of songs up for download, but one of my favourites is this year's ukigumo. He's teamed up with cosMo, a similar artist, albeit one mostly known for his expertise with all things Hatsune Miku. He is behind the reaaaaaally fast (and kinda sad) "Disappearance of Hatsune Miku" among other things.

But those of you allergic to the virtual diva will be pleased to know that their first album 「コスモドライバー∞UP」 only barely features her voice (about four seconds, to be precise). It's mostly these two guys singing along with some sampling (moemoemoe...). Without getting into details, the album's a great mix of pop/rock/chiptune and even some pretty intense prog-rock à la Yes. Close To The Edge, chiptune style? I think my dad would enjoy that. And let's not forget about the third player on the visual front: SasakureP took care of the jacket art and the unit's first PV as seen above. Dream teams like this only last so long, but I'm already looking forward to a second album!

Wednesday, 25 November 2009

VORC: JulieHally debut single, Saitone's 8bit Micheal Jackson tribute

Today marks the (digital) release of 「256 e.p.」, the first single from JulieHally who are a new duo backed by VORC Records. A full-length album is slated for release in early 2010. The above video demoes their second song L.E.D. Nation. You can also sample their opening track Casual at their HearJapan page, from which you can conveniently buy both songs for a measly 2.22$. So what we have here is an interesting combination of Julie's cute vocals laid on top of some carefully programmed 8bit tracks from none other than chiptune expert Hally. The songs were composed with a standard pop/rock mindset, no experimental stuff here. There's good energy and both songs are fairly memorable, which is impressive for a debut release.

But dig beneath the surface and you'll uncover some impressive hardcore experience. Hally of course is a well established Chiptune artist in Japan. He even came up with some custom Famicom equipment for his live performances. Seems the man is a total party animal too, judging by this touching male bonding story from Denmark (do I detect some bromance?). Now the other part of the equation is just as fascinating. We are indeed talking about the proud Samurai descendant Julie Watai (AKA SAMURAIGIRL) who appeared alongside DJ SHIMAMURA on last year's brutal JCore compilation 「真・凌辱HARDCORE ~エロスの饗宴~」. And yes, you're right, this is the same Julie Watai whose fantastic otaku photography book was released worldwide in 2006. So, uh... street cred? Yeah. It's everywhere.

Also from our friends @ VORC comes Saitone's two latest songs: Smooth Criminal and Thriller. Yup, these are indeed 8bit covers of some of MAIKURU JAKUSON's greatest hits. He's always enjoyed tremendous popularity in Japan, so these chiptune tributes are quite fitting. Regardless of what you think of the man, you should be able to enjoy these two songs on a purely artistic basis. It helps that Saitone, one of the founding members of VORC, is nothing short of a legend when it comes to stringing intricate series of crude beeps together. And hey, he'll even play them live.

Speaking of which, VORC record also wants you to know that on November 27th 2009, you can log on to DreamHack's channel for a FREE STREAM of JulieHally and Saitone performing live in Sweden. You may consult the event's schedule for more details, but JulieHally and Saitone go on at 11:30PM (11/26) and 12:30AM (11/27) respectively. That's Sweden time (CET+1) so use this handy website to convert to your own time zone (east coasters, we're talking 5:30PM here). Don't miss them!

Friday, 20 November 2009

Make room for the New Denpa Kid On The Block: Studio SATUKI

I say new, but in reality, Studio SATUKI (studio皐) have been around since 2004. The Yokohama duo began by entering many YAMAHA competitions, then moved on to contribute multiple Touhou remixes of the J-Core variety and a number of one-off denpa songs that helped them gain popularity on Niconico. The video above showcases their second most recent composition (as of November 2009), but by far their most popular. The Hammer meme (originally from Super Smash Bros.) exploded sometime in early 2009, spawning thousands of hilarious MADs. So SATUKI took the concept, made a song around it and now they're the talk of the internets.

Just prior to their Hammer song, they also drew the attention of many denpa fans with a remix of the Family-Mart theme song (at least the ones in Akihabara, from what I understand). What I love from studio皐 is that they don't shy away from using the 電波ソング tag, which is a symbol of quality as far as I'm concerned. I also appreciate the fact that they actually reply to my emails, in English no less! So head on over to the Studio SATUKI website and check out some of their older MP3s. You'll notice that their second composition 「 竹取ふらいとッ☆ to: Luna /from: our Tokyo」 was a chiptune-style Touhou remix, that right there says a lot about the budding studio. I also recommend their song 「嫁 404 Not Found」, which is part of their original denpa series featuring KOKO.

Their most recent composition is their first time with Hatsune Miku, this is sure to turn quite a few heads their way. It was gracefully translated by Japanese Youtube user ikuy398, who has quite a few other translations on his channel. I love when Japanese folks are aware that there are denpa fans outside of Japan and make an effort to connect with us. Kudos to ikuy398 and Studio SATUKI for this very reason!

Monday, 16 November 2009

Nao still doing eroge theme songs for Visual Art's

In related news, the Earth still revolves around Sun.

Some "graduation", eh. On to greener pastures, you say? Nuh-uh. Once an eroge singer, always an eroger singer. But I'm not complaining! 「咆哮!ド田舎ちゃんねる5」 is a decent theme song tinged with just enough craziness to remind me of fripSideNAOproject!'s greatest strengths (considering they were a total SHORT CIRCUIT ripoff). Of course, being the new and improved person that she is (now that she left sat to rot), she probably wants to avoid any and all comparisons to her former work. Maybe a good start would be NOT including old fripSide songs at the beginning of a completely unrelated eroge.

It does seem like this is her first new song since 「my graduation」 which appeared on the monstrous 10-disc compilation of the same (sorta) name. At the very least, it is her first collaboration with composer 新井健一 and experienced lyricist 下地和彦. She is also doing the ending theme with 新井健史, who actually composed the very last fripSideNAOProject! track. 「プール・バケーション」 was an OK song, but my money's on sappy for this one. Since I can't find Nao's blog right now, that's all the details I have! But I wouldn't mind more of the same in the future. Also, the game in question features voice work by 民安ともえ! Is she intense or what?

Tuesday, 10 November 2009

Adorable MOSAIC.WAV artwork, live pictures

(click for full resolution image) Does this art remind you of something? It was drawn by SHIGATAKE, the same artist who came up with last year's Kuma-tan, titular character of a Nintendo DS game by Vanillaware (he also worked on Odin Sphere and GrimGrimoire). There is something wrong with this piece of artwork though: Mi~ko is much taller than kayapi!! A Gentle Giant, if you will.

Famitsu recently put up a bunch of high quality pictures from the recent free concert. Of course you can always check out the Youtube medley I cooked up for you guys. It was pulled from Nicovideo in less than 2 hours, but so far the Youtube one is OK! I'm not exactly sure on what grounds they can have it removed anyway, it was a free & public broadcasting.

Friday, 6 November 2009

Best Believe! Brutally Brain Blowing BUBBLE-B Blurb

Allow me to take a break from the usual hypermoedestructodenpa material this blog normally covers and introduce a pretty awesome dude (BUBBLE-B) and his pretty awesome labels (Speedking Productions/TOY LABEL). I'm only, oh... about two months late on this, but hey: Brandish 2 and all that. So a couple of awesome Speedking albums came out at M3-24, including BUBBLE-B's very own sophomore effort 「バブルBのビッグ・バン」 (big bang). This whopper of a release is actually a CD+DVD and is intended to be a follow up to his 2004 DVD 「バブルBのグッド・イヴニング」 (good evening). You can find the complete tracklisting and more info at BUBBLE-B's blog.

The intense car nerd in the above video is not BUBBLE-B himself, but his buddy Enjo-G. Together they've got half a dozen collaborations on Nicovideo, including MC'ing on this MEGASHIT commercial. While there are proper "songs" per se, a majority of BUBBLE-B's tracks consist of him remixing / freaking out to old Japanese commercials or variety shows. As you can see, there is a strong video component to all of his creations, hence the DVD. He even went as far as creating an original Hatsune Miku song, which is sure to earn him new fans as MOSAIC.WAV have recently found out. Then again, with a song title like 「ダサイタマ」, he might as well make just as many enemies. Zanshiro!

Not content with writing and releasing his own music, BUBBLE-B has also been the driving force behind Speedking Productions and TOY LABEL for quite a while (2000). He and his buddies also publish a number of compilations. The second M3-24 release, perhaps slightly more relevant to this blog's content than the first, was 「SPEEDKING PRESENTS 8bit RAVE」. As its title indicates, it offers a seriously dope assortment of chiptune and J-Core from an interesting variety of artists. The tracklisting reveals contributions from some currently "unknown" artists (including the delightfully named Eagles Become Vultures From Pile Of Dogshit) but also from veteran KPLECRAFT and Momoi-collaborators Missile Chewbacca.

The idea with this album is quite simple: combine the best of the chiptune and J-Core worlds (or J-Death as they like to call it). This results in a largely different kind of 8bit sound than what we've been getting lately; abrasive and gloomy come to mind. I sincerely hope this is the first of many in what could be a lucrative series for Speedking. If you're hungry for more of their unique J-Death techno, check out samples from their first and second compilation albums. Solid soundtracks for a solid gym session, I'll tell you that much.

Wednesday, 4 November 2009

Brandish 2 English translation out, still not for bitches (updated w/ trailer!)

Oh yeah, I'm done with this thing. Until the first bug report shows up, that is. Right now, you can download the Brandish 2 English Translation Patch from the Synchronicity forums, but the file is also in the submission queue as we speak. Judging from the trailer's reaction, I'm thinking this could get at least 2000 downloads -- which is probably more than the amount of Brandish 1 copies KOEI sold back in '95. All bragging aside, I'm pretty confident hardcore gamers will enjoy my translation. I may be some low level JLPT4 schmuck, but I've been playing video games since the mid eighties, especially the RPG variety. Time will tell, but so far the reaction has been overwhelming!