Something You Didn't Ever Have

from Pretty Eight Machine SE by Inverse Phase

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The Sega Master System's sound is, much like the AY, extremely simple. You get three plain square waves and for whitenoise, you can choose one of three different frequencies or tell the whitenoise to follow the frequency of the third square. Arguably, Something I Can Never Have is the simplest song on the album, so for better or worse, I decided to match the two up.

I ran into a few limitations; one of them is that the TI SN76489 (SMS sound chip) doesn't go very low, so you can't get very good bass. Another hurdle is that Trent and the piano hit the same note more than a couple times, and since there is no timbral control in the SMS, it just sounds like one loud note. To solve this problem, both the bass and the "vocals" were pitched up an octave. The result is something that actually sounds a lot like an old Sega game, so I guess I can't complain. The thing that really makes this track, though, in my opinion, is the way the Master System's whitenoise (which I think I defined as beating an empty trash can) matches up with the percussion in the chorus. That was when I knew I had made the right choice for this track.

Since basically no one ever had a Sega Master System, that pretty much determined the name of the track.


from Pretty Eight Machine SE, released June 14, 2012


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Inverse Phase Baltimore, Maryland

Chiptune/8-bit music and indie game composer.

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