If you live in Adelaide (which is in Australia), then you’ll know of the Adelaide Fringe Festival. Part of the festivities is this music festival called Format. It covers experimental music at this great venue down Peel Street. (Google Maps Link). Tonight was a workshop, which was hosted by local chiptune artist Seb Tomczak (aka Little-Scale), and supported by the Helpmann Academy. So the workshop tonight consists of two things, learning to play around with making Chiptunes, and bending circuits.


This is a custom ROM for a Game Boy called LSDJ, which can then be played on an emulator for OSX, Linux or Windows, OR with a customised GameBoy cartridge which you can drag and drop the GameBoy rom files on to.


Before we dived right in, Seb showed us a couple of videos, like this one from the Blip Festival 2008 in New York (which hopefully if I “Crush it” hard enough, I’ll actually go to do a report for it either this year or next year).

Once we moved through the demonstration, I got lost. I couldn’t figure out how to put drums onto the chip loop I made, so I pulled up Logic Pro and added a drum loop typical of what I used to write.. (Oh yeah folks, I dabbled in Industrial/Experimental/Noise music under the moniker Mechanised Convulsions) Either way, I most definitely intend to do a thorough session with LSDJ at another point, lots of fun nevertheless, so once we concluded the LSDJ part of the workshop, we move on to circuit bending.

Interesting concept actually, for those who don’t know, you basically grab an electronic toy or gadget which produces sounds, and you play around with the wiring/circuitry till the sound changes from it’s original programming form.

(DJ Mental Blank from RvM: Adelaide)

We got to pull apart two toys: a $2.50 imitation toy light saber,


as well as a talking Goofy doll…

All in all, it was my first experience with circuit bending, and I’ve absorbed a lot of information/experience from tonight’s session. For those who have missed out, YOU MISSED OUT! I hope there will be future sessions like this in a casual environment where we can drink, laugh, muck around. I sadly couldn’t stay back to listen to a live set from Little-Scale, but do yourselves a favour, keep an eye open on our website, twitter, facebook, and the forums, as well as Little-Scale’s website for any upcoming happenings around Adelaide and the chiptune community. I’ve now learnt (the hard way, as in too late), that there was a festival on (and is still on till the 14th!!!!!!). No doubt, for Fringe 2011, we’ll be covering Format Festival 2011 too. Here’s hoping it does return!


http://www.format.net.au Official Festival Page

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