‘SID CHIP SOUNDS – THE MUSIC OF THE COMMODORE 64’
(ROBOT ELEPHANT RECORDS)
Release date: 20th February 2012
Format: 2 X LP / CD / Digital
The ever enigmatic Robot Elephant Records release ‘Sid Chip Sounds – The Music Of The Commodore
64’, a compilation of music from classic Commodore 64 computer games. The 18 original pieces of music
have been remastered for this release on gatefold double vinyl, CD and download.
When people talk about “Commodore 64 music”, it’s easy to forget they’re not talking about a musical
style: they’re talking about a delivery mechanism. What that convenient phrase hides is the sheer
amount of originality and creativity that went into creating the music for games on the Commodore 64.
The majority of games produced for the Commodore 64 made use of the machine’s revolutionary SID
chip, devised by engineer Bob Yannes who later co-founded the Ensoniq digital synthesizer company,
and named by PC World Magazine as one of computing's most important inventions. Although it
was advanced for the time composers had to overcome many challenges. For example, the hardware
only allowed three voices at once so composers assign one voice to play quick arpeggios so listeners
believed they were hearing sustained chords. It’s well documented that humans are at their best when
overcoming limitations or under deadline, and the classic C64 composers pared music to its essence.
They had their own sounds and their own way of playing them.
Revolutionary composers such as Martin Galway, Rob Hubbard, David Whittaker and Ben Daglish rose
to prominence during the 80s for their technology defying masterpieces whose sounds ranging from
simple clicks and beeps to complex musical extravaganzas. Included on this compilation is some of their
most celebrated work including music from games ‘Arkanoid’, ‘Comic Bakery’, Last Ninja’ and ‘Sanxion’.
Influence in modern music is widespread. The sub genres of 8-bit, chiptune, gabba; the lo-fi sounds of DJ
Scotch Egg, the rapid arpeggios of Rustie and even the beats of international pop hits such ‘TiK ToK’ by
Kesha are all informed by developments made during the early years of home gaming.
As relevant as ever, ‘Sid Chip Sounds – The Music Of The Commodore 64’ is a vital collection for fans of
remarkable electronic music whether retrospective or modernist.
1. Ben Daglish - Last Ninja (Wastelands)
2. Ben Dalglish - Last Ninja (Wilderness)
3. Ben Dalglish - Trap
4. Chris Huelsbeck - Giana Sisters (Intro)
5. Chris Huelsbeck - Katakis (Song3)
6. David Whittaker - Glider Rider
7. David Whittaker - Panther
8. Tim & Geoff Follin - Gauntlet 3 (1)
9. Tim & Geoff Follin - Gauntlet 3 (2)
10. Tim Follin - LED Storm
11. Martin Galway – Wizball [*Vinyl only]
12. Martin Galway - Comic Bakery
13. Martin Galway - Parallax
14. Martin Galway - Arkanoid
15. Matt Gray - Dominator (Song 2)
16. Matt Dray - Last Ninja 2 (Song 2)
17. Rob Hubbard - Commando
18. Rob Hubbard - Sanxion
For more information contact Ben Smith at firstname.lastname@example.org or 077 6492 6719