Taking Nintendo’s Game Boy to places it was never meant to go, a lineup of international chiptune artists will be converging on Koenji High this weekend for Japan’s first ever Blip Festival. The roster includes acts such as Nullsleep from New York, who takes a blowtorch to sweet “Super Mario” style ditties, gradually melting them down with a battery of zaps and bleeps until the listener is caught up in a dog fight (or goomba fight) of raw electronic sound.

“I kind of made a real pain in the ass of myself with a whole bunch of people trying to convince them (the event) was possible,” says organizer David Adams over coffee in the Higashi Nakano area of Tokyo. He has made it his mission to bring Blip Festival to Japan ever since being blown away by it in New York in 2008, and it’s hard not to get caught up in his enthusiasm over the possibilities of the chiptune genre.

In a time of both misinformation and too much information, quality journalism is more crucial than ever.
By subscribing, you can help us get the story right.