Blip Festival Tokyo 2012
- Festival-goers navigate the darkened streets after a special Blip kick-off party in Shibuya.
- Tokyo’s ubiquitous, web-like power lines hang low over the streets of Kōenji, just a few short blocks from the Blip Fest venue.
- Blasterhead helps kick off the first night of Blip Tokyo. Like many others in the Japanese chip scene, his sizable discography includes music for games, J-pop vocalists, and more.
- Bud Melvin croons while strumming his banjo over a catchy, country western-style Game Boy ditty, set to live visuals by Batsly Adams.
- M7Kenji mercilessly twists pixels from the shadows during Hige Driver's set. Visualists usually stay out of the spotlight, but their role is central to the experience.
- Tracking a song in LSDJ while crowdsurfing is especially difficult when there's no cartridge in your Game Boy.
- France’s Ultrasyd creates sprawling, multi-part dance odysseys using a veritable armada of live hardware, including but not limited to a Game Boy, Atari Falcon, Atari STe, and Amstrad CPC.
- Festival-goers traveling from afar take a break inside of a cramped videogame theme bar in Akihabara.
- Plenty of opportunities for finding music-making gear at Super Potato, a massive, four-story retro gaming shop in Akihabara.
- Blip Festival co-founder Bit Shifter sings over a drum ‘n bass-style Game Boy cover of The Church’s “Under The Milky Way.” An iconic figure within the chip scene, he’s also a founding member of 8bitpeoples, a netlabel based in New York City. [Photo: Emi Spicer]
- Chibi-Tech begins her set with bouncy melodies bursting from a pair of Nintendo Famicoms, accompanied by visuals from No Carrier. [Photo: Emi Spicer]
- Chibi-Tech’s ultra-cute facade suddenly vanishes as an evil-sounding dubstep bassline whips the crowd into a frenzy. The rumbling bass was accomplished by hacking the Famitracker software timer to count waveforms at different speeds. [Photo: Emi Spicer]
- Legendary game composer Hirokazu “Hip” Tanaka (Metroid, Dr. Mario) makes a surprise guest appearance for the final set of Blip Festival. [Photo: Emi Spicer]
- Hip Tanaka rolls the “ending credits” for Blip Fest, commemorating artists and organizers past and present. [Photo: Emi Spicer]