Haeyoung Kim AKA Bubblyfish
I jumped a groove this weekend and took in one night of the still-ongoing Blip Festival 2007, where I saw, among others, the above-depicted chiptune DJ Bubblyfish. It’s not a scene I’m really familiar with, this 8-bit, lo-fi, chiptuning scene, but it’s clearly a font not only of amazing people-watching, but of the stuff of authenticity as well. It’s a scene built around limitations, and limitation becomes a kind of currency, affirming identity and memory in the type of music that is created by 8-bit tech. Through repetition and nostalgia, we are reminded that that we are in our way real and we are human. The artists are un-self-conscious, and everyone is clearly doing this not out of a sense of commercial betterment (what market is there be for 8-bit music?), but out of nostalgia and a studied joy. Sure, the palette can be constraining, but you fool yourself if you think that every form of expression is not restrictive in its own right. To be limited and to express yourself -literally to stand up and say who you are and that you are with the opportunities that you are given and the tech on hand – is to live.