In late 2017 Hyperdub released ‘Diggin in the Carts’, a compilation put together by Nick Dwyer and Kode9 of pioneering and rare Japanese video game music from the 80s and 90s. Since then, from Sonar Festival in Barcelona to Liquid Rooms in Tokyo, Kode9 has been touring a live a/v set of remixes from that album, in collaboration with visuals from anime legend Koji Morimoto who also designed the artwork for the original compilation.
Finally, on this first Kode9 EP for several years, a handful of these remixes see the light of day. 9 rivets his 80/160bpm rhythms onto these classic 8bit and 16bit melodies, re-animating the Steve Reichian arpeggios of Soshi Hosoi, the grime-like horn fanfares of Yuzo Koshiro, the sour pads of Koichi Ishaibashi and pitching Tadahiro Nitta down into a slow building, frantic low end grind.
released May 3, 2019
Sleeved in artwork by Konx-on-Pax adapted from the visuals from the a/v performance.
supported by 45 fans who also own “Various Artists, Kode9 - Diggin in the Carts Remixes”
Digging In The Carts reveals that while Chip Tanaka was using the hyper-nostalgic bleeps and technological restrictions of the era to riff on dub and reggae, composers like Yuzo Koshiro and Soshi Hosoi were drawing from Detroit techno and minimalist composition too. They were all dreaming up their own micro-masterpieces, works that stand up well beyond the boundaries of “music for video games.” Martyn Pepperell