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Metal Songs Get Digitized, Eight-Bit Style

Retro anything has always been paradoxically in style, and you need to look no further than Youtube to discover a point at which retro intersects with metal. In particular, that point involves the late-’80s generation home video game consoles. Enter eight-bit metal!

“I’ve always loved video games and music,” said Youtube user maximushyrule to Noisecreep. “So one night I decided to see what would my favorite metal songs would sound like eight-bit style.” Maximushyrule has been playing video games since the age of three and has been a musician for four years.

“My favorite song has got to be ‘Pestilence’ [by the Faceless],” Maximushyrule said, “because it’s really fast and it took me a week to figure out the whole song.”

Eight-bit versions, much like the tried-and-true acoustic versions of songs, strip much of the overt human stylizations from songs into the bare notes and rhythms. It’s another way for an emotional artistic expression to assume a simplistic form. Much of what you would hear from a metal band in eight-bit format is indistinguishable from the music you would hear playing a normal Nintendo game.

“I don’t really have a method,” maximushyrule explained further. “I just have to have a song stuck in my head. My gear consists of two programs and my guitar. First I tab the song out in GuitarPro … then I export the midi file to another program called GXSCC.”

Another user, xTwilightxxPrincessx, like many other creators, use GXSCC by Gashisoft, a nearly-decade old program for PCs that assists in rendering MIDI files into an eight-bit format. Her reasons for going into the eight-bit renderings of metal songs is perhaps the reason why many people have: “I started doing eight-bit songs because I was bored.”

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