Get Your Chip On With Blip Festival

CIMG0271_thumb.jpgBlip Festival, a four-day celebration of music made with vintage game systems, returns to New York City on Thursday with 40 artists and musicians from the US, Japan, Europe and South America.

"After last year's jaw-dropping lineup and unprecedented turnout, it became clear that there is a large and growing interest in this movement that shouldn't be ignored," said Mike Rosenthal, festival co-curator and The Tank's Managing Director. "By hosting this event, we not only nurture the scene, but also give New Yorkers a unique chance to experience a thriving international subculture."

Among the artists features will be the Ataris, the Commodore 64s, Bit Shifter and Nullsleep. I had a chance to chance to chat with a bunch of chip musicians, including Bit Shifter and Nullsleep, years ago when I wrote a feature about the music for the Rocky and MTV. It's a fascinating sub-culture of music and gaming.

If you're in the area I highly recommend stopping by to check it out. Tickets run $US 10 a day or $US 35 for the full festival pass. Full release after the jump.

Blip Festival

Old Videogame Gear, New Music: The Blip Festival 2007 Returns to NYC for Second Triumphant Year, Nov. 29 through Dec. 2

4-Day Festival Celebrates Chiptune Culture with 40 Artists and Musicians from around the World

Event Organized by The Tank and 8bitpeoples; Sponsored by Element Labs, Time Out Magazine, Make Magazine, Singha Beer, and Periscope Entertainment, with Additional Support from The Greenwall Foundation and New York State Council on the Arts

New York, NY, November 27, 2007—The Blip Festival 2007 (www.blipfestival.org), a four-day celebration of music and art made with vintage video game and home computing equipment, today announced its full schedule of events, screenings and workshops celebrating chiptune culture in all its many forms.

Presented by The Tank and 8bitpeoples and sponsored in part by Element Labs, Time Out Magazine, Make Magazine, Singha Beer, and Periscope Entertainment, with additional support from The Greenwall Foundation and New York State Council on the Arts, this year's extravaganza follows up on the success of 2006's inaugural outing with an even larger venue to showcase its roster of 40 artists and musicians from the US, Japan, Europe and South America - many appearing for the first time ever in the United States.

"After last year's jaw-dropping lineup and unprecedented turnout, it became clear that there is a large and growing interest in this movement that shouldn't be ignored," said Mike Rosenthal, festival co-curator and The Tank's Managing Director. "By hosting this event, we not only nurture the scene, but also give New Yorkers a unique chance to experience a thriving international subculture."

With nightly concerts, weekend screenings and workshops, and a group gallery show "B I T M A P: as good as new" presented in association with the festival at Williamsburg's vertexList Gallery, The Blip Festival 2007 brings together the biggest names in the field of low-bit art and music for an opportunity to be seen and heard in the epicenter of the creative world.

Among the featured artists who will be showcasing their skills on Game Boys, Ataris, Commodore 64s and other old school gear are Tokyo-based 6955, the Netherlands' Gijs Gieskes, and New York's very own Bit Shifter and Nullsleep. In addition, daytime workshops, held on Saturday and Sunday, December 1 & 2, include such topics as "Break the Circle and Become an Atari DJ" and "Pixel Pushing the PPU: An Introduction to NES Graphics."

The Blip Festival 2007 will also present the world premiere of 8-BIT Generation, a new documentary about low-bit art and chiptune music, and the influence videogame culture has had on an entire generation of artists. Directed by Lionel Brouet, who will be present at the screening and will introduce the film, 8-Bit Generation features punk godfather and former Sex Pistols manager Malcolm McLaren, Role Model (Sweden) Lo-bat (Belgium), Relax Beat (France), and The Wild Strawberries (China).

Among the festival's related events, vertexList Gallery is presenting "B I T M A P: as good as new," a group exhibition celebrating the history of the digital image, the aesthetics of early computing, and early video-game consoles, featuring Cory Arcangel, Chris Ashley, Eteam, Kimberly Hart, Tom Moody, and many, many more.

On Wednesday, November 28, to get everyone ready for the 4-day extravaganza, The Tank will present a screening of 8 BIT (www.8bitmovie.com), a documentary about low-bit art and culture, which premiered at the Museum of Modern Art and was screened at last year's Blip Festival. For more information, including a complete schedule of events, visit: http://www.blipfestival.org/schedule.html.

EVENT INFORMATION: Location: Eyebeam Atelier 540 W. 21st Street (Bet. 10th and 11th Avenues) New York, NY 10011 Time: 8:00PM, nightly musical performances (Special daily exhibitions/showings. See festival website for more details. ) Tickets: Available at the door or online at www.blipfestival.org Prices: $10/day, $35/festival pass


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