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Freelance Video Game Composer for Hire! 🌟 Comedy Let's Player 🌟 Cartoon animator 👌 👌 👌

Alex Emenheiser @ade-syndicate

24, Male

Freelance Composer

Millersville University

York, PA

Joined on 7/14/12

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ade-syndicate's News

Posted by ade-syndicate - 1 month ago


I have taken an interest in filmmaking lately. However, filmmaking is a notoriously expensive hobby. So instead of buying proper equipment for ludicrous sums of money, I decided to take matters into my own hands and do it myself!




I still have more plans for DIY equipment! A boom mic pole made out of a broom stick. A camera slider made out of PVC pipe, maybe a motorized slider. I plan on making short videos like these on all of them!


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Posted by ade-syndicate - February 15th, 2021


Commissions are going through slowly but surely as usual. I want to transition away from commissions indefinitely because it takes up such a huge chunk of my time that I have no time or energy to focus on Totally Good at Games or my own animations and other ventures. After this current League of Legends commission and the next MatterBoar cartoon, I want to take a hiatus from commissions and return in the future.



In 2015, I was part of my friends Mark Swartz and Orion Rodriguez's indie film studio called Clear View Pictures. Since Mark left PA some years back I've always wanted to make my own movies. Good news! I've been getting into filmmaking, though I am in the early stages of it. I'm working on building a simple set of vintage lenses before I buy a camera body. So far, I have a telephoto lens. Next up is a 35mm lens and I will hopefully get one tomorrow!


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Sun Optics Zoom Telephoto 85–210mm f/4.8


I have my eye on the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 4K for $1,300. It's a lot, but it records super high quality 4K footage. If you want to keep up with what gear I use, I have a Kit account where you can see all my filmmaking, animation, and music gear!


In other news, Darren is getting very close to 10,000 followers on TikTok! Go support my boy!! He's working on his voice acting demo reel.

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Posted by ade-syndicate - January 20th, 2021


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Decided to arrange Prelude from Castlevania III today. Here's the sheet music for those who want to download it!

Prelude - Castlevania III Sheet music for Piano (Solo) | Musescore.com


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Posted by ade-syndicate - January 11th, 2021


I am very proud to present TWO NEW ALBUMS: Nexomon Sound Selection and EXTINCTION EVENT—Nexomon: Extinction Sound Selection! They contain all the music I created for both Nexomon games and even include some never before heard unused tracks! Give them a listen. I hope you enjoy! ^_^


In the Bandcamp release, there are extra goodies like sheet music and album commentary for each track!


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Album art by Michelle Lo, ArtOfMello


EXTINCTION EVENT—Nexomon: Extinction Sound Selection


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Album art by Alexander Emenheiser, @ade-syndicate


Nexomon Sound Selection


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Posted by ade-syndicate - January 1st, 2021


2020 was bad. It was filled with worsening depression and apathy with short-lived spikes of happiness. It turns out that even if good things happen, it doesn't make the bad things go away; they just distract from it.


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It was slow and yet went by in the blink of an eye. But if there's one thing I've learned from 2020, it's this: In order to do something, you have to do it. Do not wait nor make excuses. The problem is that I am not equipped to do that. Not with any meaningful consistency, anyway.


Commissions

The argument of "Should I continue being a freelance artist or should I get a 'real' job?" and "Can freelance even be considered a real job compared to jobs like burger flipper, janitor, cashier, etc., especially when I make less than even minimum wage?" when people assure me freelance is a real job dances around in my head nonstop. The thought of doing both is awful; imagine trying to balance a real job and freelance when I cannot emotionally handle a real job and cannot financially handle freelance. The push and pull would be too much. (There's another layer of guilt from the fact that everyone else on the planet can do both and yet I can't. Combined with people's advice that you should "follow your dreams!" and "Don't compare yourself to others!", it leaves me questioning if I'm even a good person or a manipulative bum at every turn.)


Often, I receive advice by other artists to simply increase my rates until my financial needs are met, but that brings on a whole new set of problems.

  • If I already struggle to find people willing to pay for cheap work, how can I hope to find exclusively find people willing to pay much more for the same quality of work? The vast majority of clients are just your average joes and cannot pay a living wage.
  • How can I physically pull off an increase in art quality analogous to the rate increase if I'm already doing my best? If I increase my rates, how can I sleep soundly knowing that I'm arbitrarily asking $100 for something today that was $50 yesterday?
  • If I already struggle with guilt in taking people's money, how does increasing the payment relieve stress when all it does is increase the stakes if I don't meet expectations?


I have been very fortunate to have the clients I have had and am grateful to them for choosing me over others. I am sorry that I do not do enough. The most notable commissions from this year were the ones from MatterBoar and WaffleDew.


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YouTube

Totally Good at Games will be on hiatus. There may be streams from time to time, be them art or games, but I want to focus on finding stability in life before further pursuing YouTube. My resolutions for 2020 centered around finding stability in order to get TGAG off the ground or send the channel in a brave new direction, but after the COVID-19 pandemic struck that went out the window. Darren and I haven't recorded together in person since the Breath of the Wild episodes in May. The enthusiasm I had for expanding, filmmaking, and let's plays at the beginning has waned because of the utter lack of progress made over the years.


Music

There is a new album coming out soon! I'm not gonna talk about it too much because it's a surprise! I hope for it to release early January 2021.


Comics?

I've been thinking of moving away from animation. Not because I dislike it—I still love the art form as much as ever—but because animating is such an immense time sink that the reward of completing it is not worth the effort put in (among other reasons). Animated cartoons, freelance or for fun, do not make career sustaining numbers on NG or YouTube for me despite animating since 2012, nine years ago. The highest viewed cartoons of mine are Oney Plays Animated: Well Well from November on MatterBoar's channel at 85,000 views (and 940 on my Newgrounds channel) and Funny Mii Thing from eight years ago on my channel at 67,000 views. Despite my passion, there are a number of internal and external factors that prevent my life as an animator from being successful and I do not know how to fix that outside of continued stubborn, blind, hopeful persistence.


The benefit that comics have are that they are generally easier to make and so I can tell larger stories with less time. Before 2012, I was a comic artist and so I at least have experience making comics as a kid. I don't know if that's the direction I will be taking, but I'd like to just try it out without pressure. The takeaway here is that I'm not entirely sure what I'm doing. I haven't been sure of what I'm doing for six years (in any aspect of life) and, given external pressures, only having that ambiguity when things should be concrete is maddening.


I've also slowly been working on a Sonic Adventure 2 comic adaptation in my spare time. When I'm not working on commissions, I may work on it. It's the first comic I've made that uses a dip pen! I was inspired by the art in 90s cyberpunk manga and wanted to replicate it. This City Escape page isn't from that comic; it's just something I made to try out the dip pen and digital screentones since I'm very new to it. The plan is to complete the entire comic and then post it instead of posting pages as it progresses. That way, I can focus on making each page to my liking without worrying about hooking everyone with consistent updates. Given everything, I'm not sure if I will have the time or peace of mind to create this at all, but I'd certainly like to.


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2021 Resolutions

I hope that things improve. I don't know how to make them improve, but I hope they do.

  • Either quit freelance (permanently or temporarily) and get a real job or instead make freelance sustainable
  • Afterwards, expand Totally Good at Games to be something more than just another let's play show

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Posted by ade-syndicate - December 24th, 2020


While I work on commissions, I am also preparing a new album that will release sometime in January 2021. All that needs to be done is complete one of the tracks and create album art! I am very excited to get this album in the hands of its listeners!




Additionally, here are some other recent posts. Here's one about my time aboard the Eddsworld Fan Movie project and here's one about my canceled animation projects.


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Posted by ade-syndicate - November 15th, 2020


My memory is poor, so my recollection may be faulty. Many of the details were taken from me and Marc's Facebook Messenger conversations, though they don't explain everything. I believe we talked more on Skype, but those conversations have unfortunately since been deleted.



My involvement with the Eddsworld Fan Movie project started in mid-2014. Marc asked for image songs for Edd, Tom, and Matt. The intention wasn't to use them in the movie, but as bonus tracks in the movie's future soundtrack album. Edd's image song was originally intended to have lyrics. They told the story of how Edd and Matt deal with Tom's sudden clone. I wrote the lyrics sometime in late September 2014. The intention was to have the voice actors of Edd, Tom, and Matt perform their lines in sprechstimme, a speaking-singing hybrid delivery. I recorded myself singing the narration lyrics in early August. The singing was very cringey and the actors never performed their parts in the song.


The Inner Imaginations of Edd's Mind Lyrics

By Alexander Emenheiser


[SUNG] Sit right there

Imma’ tell you a tale

About a young man

And his two good friends

You better strap right in

This shindig is about to begin


[RAPPED] Edd was sittin’ on the sofa

Takin’ a sip from his cola

Matt started yelling

Like a bat outta’ hell-a

[EDD] “What’s your deal, Matt?

You can be heard two homes over!”

[MATT] “Quick! Duck down

You’re gonna’ blow my cover!”


[RAPPED] So they hid right underneath the couch

And Edd decided to let Matt vouch:

[MATT] “Tom’s gone mad!

There’s nothing we can do!”

[EDD] “What are you talking about?

How can this possibly be true?”


[CHORUS]

[MATT] “He bumped into me

Accidentally”

[EDD] “And then what did he do?”

[MATT] “He said he was sorry!”

[EDD] “WHAT?!”

[MATT] “I know, right!

And that’s not all.

When I told him my granny was ill

He said he’d give her a call!”


“That’s so unlike him!

Being nice and junk.

He’s not supposed to be gentle,

He’s supposed to be a punk!”

[EDD] “These are desperate time

Calls for desperate measures.

We must put an end to this

For now and forever.”


[RAPPED] Scared and confused,

They did what anyone would do

They went up to Tom’s room

And his artillery collection, they went through his

AK-47s, AR-15s,

With enhanced trigger action


[EDD] “Are you ready, Matt?”

[MATT] “Ready as ever, Edd.”

[EDD] “Let’s do this!”


[RAPPED] So they searched the house,

Every nook and cranny.

Looked in the garage

And looked in the pantry.

They huddled ‘gainst the wall,

Look at door that they’d breach,

Slam open the door,

And their destiny was reached.


[CHORUS]

[SUNG] Oh, my god!

There stood two Toms.

One had to be the right

And the other had to be the wrong.

But which one is real?

The one drinking

Or the one petting the baby seal?

[EDD] “It’s – Oh, it’s the one who’s drinking…”


“What the heck? You have a clone?”

[TOM] “Yup. He’s an anti-clone. He’s the opposite of me.”

[EDD] “That would explain the politeness.”

[MATT] “And the humanitarianism.”

[TOM] “And it would explain why he does all the chores I want him to do for free.”

[MATT] “Did you say FREE?!”

[EDD] “Where did you get this clone?!”

[TOM] “Why, at the Clone Shoppe, of course!”

[MATT] “Ohmigod, Ohmigod, Ohmigod, I’m gonna’ get a clone~~!”


[RAPPED] So Edd and Matt got their own slaves

To do all their work, thinking they would behave

But they forgot that the clones turn evil

So the clones told them to dig their own graves.


Too afraid to die,

They compromised.


[SUNG] Lesson of the story is

Don’t get an anti-clone

To do all of your chores

Or else they might form a union


then you’ll have to pay for worker’s compensation


…Or you can just fire them.

That can work, too.


[TOM] “Hey, Edd? What are we going to do with this seal?”

[SEAL] “ORK!” (Seal noise)

[EDD] “Hmm…We could either give it to the Animal Protection Agency or…”

[MATT] “We can CLONE IT!”

[EDD/TOM UNISON] “Hmm…YEAAAAH!”


[CLONING MACHINE ACTIVATES, “ZAP!!”]

[SEAL] “ORK!”

["ZAP!!"]

[SEAL] “ORK”, “ORK”

[EDD/MATT/TOM UNISON] “YAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAY!!”

[CLONING CONTINUES]

[EDD/MATT/TOM CONT'D] “SEAL! SEAL! SEAL! SEAL! SEAL! SEAL!”

[MATT] “I’m going to call you Shelly! And you: Petunia! And you: Snuggles! And you: Dominguez!”


[FADE OUT]


[SEAL] “ORK!”


[END]


The "Sit right there / Imma tell you a tale" bit was a Game Grumps reference to how Arin Hanson would open his improv raps with "Wassup, mothafuckas, let me tell you a tale". Looking back, I don't know why I did that since Game Grumps has nothing to do with Eddsworld; chalk it up to being young and inexperienced. Two versions of Tom's image song were made. The first one was a clumsy mix of prog and funk and the second was ska. Ska naturally fitted Tom's character, so that was the one we used. Matt's image song was supposed to have vocals, too, but I struggled with the lyrics and couldn't complete them. So, Matt's theme was left as a strangely paced instrumental. The song was going to be about Matt protecting his precious face from the dangers he encounters while going on a milk run. The chorus was supposed to open each time with a bombastic "NOT THE FACE!!"


"All I can tell you now is the style of music we're going for. Since it's called 'Eddsworld: The Movie', Billy and I really want the music to sound big, like a real movie. For the score, we're going for the regular Eddsworld style (blend of ska, techno, 80s new wave, etc.) but with a larger emphasis on the orchestra." - Marc Lovallo, dir.


Marc asked me to be a composer for the movie itself on June 10th, 2015. My involvement was very on-and-off-again due to the gig being pro bono in addition to going to high school, having a janitor job, depression, and my mother suffering a car accident. I was unfortunately disconnected from the other team members and only really spoke with Marc. To my knowledge, I was the only composer on the team.


The music of Trailer 2 was explicitly inspired by the music of Metal Gear Solid. The animatic of the trailer it belonged to has since been removed, but I think it was supposed to tease the military's role as antagonists. After reading the script and learning about Paul's death in the movie, I composed A Death In the Family to accompany that scene, but was told it might not fit. I later repurposed that song for a faux-video game called Immortal Dust and retitled it Life is Fleeting. It turns out from the leaked animatic it was used in the final scene.


I left the Fan Movie project in September 2016. Interestingly, the Fan Movie team at some point received the original creators' blessings to make the Fan Movie. I never got to interact with any of the official Eddsworld team.


An early version of the script was leaked online in December 2015, I think. In 2018, Marc stepped away from the project to focus on his YouTube channel and Pippin Kelly, also known as PiPtoons, took over as director. The Eddsworld Fan Movie team announced the movie was canceled on September 12th, 2020. Minor grooming allegations against Marc Lovallo and film project-related controversies revolving around him appeared around this time, as well.


On October 9th, 2020, the full movie animatic written and directed by Marc Lavallo was leaked on YouTube and MEGA by Yoyosmixture from Instagram and was met with mixed reception at best. This version of the movie is not to be confused with the canceled project directed by PiPtoon. Watching the leaked animatic in 2020 was the first time I was able to watch the movie in a semi-complete state since starting in 2014.


Working on this project has been an honor and a blemish. On one hand, it was and still is an amazing feeling to have provided music for a cinema-esque movie based on one of my favorite internet cartoons as a kid that is Eddsworld, even if it was an unofficial fan project. It was a great learning experience as a media composer. On the other hand, it is a shame that the project was wrought with delays, controversy, and mediocrity; and that it would result in cancelation years after its conception in 2013. Though I never really got to know any of them during production, I wish the crew members of the Eddsworld Fan Movie team the best, including Charlie Neider (@chxrliee), PiPtoons, Billy Crinion, Arivuple, Franchesca Pun, Shainix, Best Buds, ShawnCookie, Patman, Vintdoo, Andrew Scott, Korpdork, Fliglaba, FishieComics, Star-Kingo, Gary On a Skateboard, Anthamation, Jaylin Corbin, DoctorLazlo, Collin Bogert, Kevin Horton, N0sSyndrome, and MikanGamerPrime. (I hope I got everyone!)


Finally, thank you to my Patreon supporters—Aleah, Ashley, and Froggy—for your continued patronage.


SUPPORT ME ON

PATREON | KO-FI | PAYPAL.ME


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Download the album here on Newgrounds or on Bandcamp.


Here is a list of all the known credits for the Marc Lovallo version of the Eddsworld Fan Movie. Information supplied by Mikan.


VOICE ACTORS

Edd | Anthony Rees

Tom and Mark | Lena Charles

Matt | James Horsley (was recast once Jon took over as director in 2018 before PiP)

General McCoy | Kevin Horton

Private Martin | Mike Joseph

Paul | Billy Crinion

Edwardo, Ian, and Hillary | Marc Lovallo

Jon and Loud Bob | Jon Lopez

Anna | Elissa Park / Adoxgraphist

Pony scientists | Billy Crinion and an unknown voice actor

Commander Bai | Jason Norris / N0sSyndrome

President Mone | Landon Bell

Patryk | Matthew Plichta

Kim and Katya, Milkman, Son Rwanson, Bill, Frank, Space Cat Announcer, Delivery Guy, Stefon Zolesky | Unknown voice actors

Evil Director | Lena Charles and unknown voice actor

Larry, Seth Mayer | Likely Mark Lovallo

Soldiers and additional voices | Unknown voice actors; likely Billy Crinion, Marc Lovallo, and Lena Charles


PRODUCTION CREW

Composers | Alexander Emenheiser, Finn MK, Hayleigh West-Nover, and Marc Lovallo

Composers (Unused) | Michael Pearson, Chandler Robinson, Noemie Pounder, and Zack Walter

Direction, Storyboards, and Editing | Marc Lovallo

Animation | Jon Lopez

Story | Marc Lovallo, Jonah Good, and Radley Catubig




EDIT (December 7, 2020) I was cleaning out my room and came across a composition book with lyrics to an alternate version of Edd's theme. It is titled EDD'S THEME—"Enter His World", likely written around mid-2014 and likely written before the used version.


There was once a boy

Who was left all alone

He carried his sketchbook:

A life of its own


He put up his art

For the whole world to see

Be befriended a boy by the name of Tom

And they would realize what they could be


In the beginning,

They did their fun and games.

Unaware of what was up ahead,

Their lives would never be the same


Chased by a mummy

Invaded by zombies

Joined the army

Explored the deep blue sea


Dangerous, adventurous,

Treacherous, humorous,

Courageous, Uranu—okay, let's not- let's not do that one.


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Posted by ade-syndicate - November 14th, 2020


Concept art from ~2017 of two canceled Oney Plays cartoons, one about the three exploring an alien planet (from No Man's Sky) and the other about Ding Dong babysitting an obnoxious baby (from Crash Bandicoot). The space cadet designs were inspired by the outer space Ren and Stimpy episodes and retrofuturism.


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Storyboards from 2015 of a canceled Wario's Woods parody. It featured Darren Leeds (@DarrenDoesVoice) as Toad and another VA as Dr. Mario, though I don't remember who. I remember recording Darren's lines inside a barn so that we wouldn't bother anyone inside my house with all the Toad screaming.


It was also going to feature these covers of Wario's Woods music, as well:


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Also, I've been thinking of adding monthly requests for Patreon supporters! Let me know if that is something you'd like!


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Posted by ade-syndicate - October 29th, 2020



...and I made Chris sound like an angry caveman.


Deadline is Nov. 6th, so it should be out shortly after!


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Posted by ade-syndicate - October 9th, 2020


The following interview was first published on September 15, 2014.


The internet is a smorgasbord of information and entertainment. One can find anything on the internet, you just have to look hard enough. I am an avid fan of prog (short for “progressive rock”) and synth music and I always wanted to know if there existed the fusion between the two genres. Eventually, I found a netlabel (a record label company that operates only online) that specializes in electronic progressive rock named Ubiktune. On this site, I found electronic progressive rock artist known as Kartmaze and he agreed to do an interview via email.


 ALEX: How would you introduce and describe yourself to those who know nothing about you or about chiptune music and progressive rock?


KARTMAZE: My name is Mads Aasvik. I’m 27 years old and live in Trondheim, Norway. Under the artist name Kartmaze, I make what I like to call synth prog and progressive chiptune music. Both genres heavily are influenced by progressive rock and progressive metal.


Chiptune music is a retro-type genre emulating the music you would find in computer games from the late 80’s and early 90’s. It’s often very simple and “lo-fi” compared to other forms of electronic music.


Progressive rock/metal (not to be confused with progressive house music) tends to be very technical, experimental and/or dynamic. Often inspired by jazz and classical music, it tries to steer away from the “rules” you find in pop music. Typical progressive features are long and dynamic songs with plenty of instrumental sections, complex song structures, usage of odd time signatures, polyrhythms and nontraditional chord progressions and scales.


ALEX: What is your musical history, in general and with electronic music and chiptune? What bands, musicians, or genres do you take influence from when writing music? How did you become interested in prog and electronic music?


KARTMAZE: I started playing the guitar when I was 16 years old and I quickly started composing very simple music using the computer (mostly in a guitar tab software called Guitar Pro). I’ve also worked a bit with the piano/keyboard through the years, but mostly as a tool for composing. Around 2006, I discovered the world of proper DAWs [Digital Audio Workstations] and MIDI [Musical Instrument Digital Interface] and haven’t looked back since.


My history with electronic music and chiptune is mostly the same. Up until almost 2 years ago, I was mostly focused on traditional prog rock/metal, but then I chose to explore the chiptune genre a bit, however in my own way. During the last year or so, I’ve moved more and more away from the chiptune genre, mainly because I felt a bit limited by the simplistic style, and moved into a more hi-fi synth genre, although still keeping the focus on the progressive aspects.


When writing music I mainly get influenced by prog rock and prog metal bands. Dream Theater, Rush, and Tool are maybe the most well known, but I get inspired a lot by more obscure bands such as Liquid Tension Experiment (LTE), Shadow Gallery, Transatlantic, Pain of Salvation, Symphony X and Opeth as well. If I was to emphasize a single musician which has inspired me the most, it would have to be Jordan Rudess, the keyboard player in Dream Theater, who has released several solo albums, as well.


The way I discovered progressive music was via a friend in high school showing me LTE’s “Acid Rain”. I was an avid power metal fan at the time, but the progressive aspects of LTE’s music got me hooked straight away and it quickly led me to the closely related, but much better known Dream Theater. I’m not really that into electronic music, to be honest, so I can’t really describe how I got interested in it. However, after starting to explore the chiptune (and chiptune related) genre I discovered a few artists which I really like, for instance C-jeff, Coda and Zantilla.


ALEX: Explain your Seven Journeys to a New Home album. Is it a concept album and if so, what theme or story does it tell? The title does suggest that there is some story to the songs, after all. Or is it that each song is an independent story?


KARTMAZESeven Journeys to a New Home is not a concept album, even though it sounds like it judging by the title alone. The “Seven Journeys” part represents the seven songs on the album, and the “New Home” part represents me finding a new way to make and share music, basically. I like to try and give a story feel to my songs with both ups and downs and twists and turns, and therefore I thought the title suited the album and the songs on it.


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The masterful album artwork for Kartmaze’s debut album Seven Journeys to a New Home.


ALEX: Why did you decide to make the album?


KARTMAZE: The whole thing started when a friend challenged me to create a chiptune and post it on Reddit. I “converted” some unused material I had lying around, uploaded it (“Brownout”) and got some good feedback. A netlabel based in Russia specializing in progressive and jazz/fusion-esque chiptunes called Ubiktune contacted me after hearing Brownout and asked if I wanted to work together with them. Of course I would, and from there on I rapidly made all the tracks on the album. I guess the motivation was that I had some tracks which I knew some people liked as well as a channel to release it through, so I didn’t think twice about making the album or not.


ALEX: Since progressive rock is such an underground and unappreciated genre, why did you make it in this style? The same question goes for progressive electronic music, let alone chiptune music. After all, electronic music is widely known for simple, energetic dance songs. What made you want to combine the two seemingly dissimilar genres?


KARTMAZE: For me it’s prog or nothing when it comes to composing my own material. I don’t think I would’ve released a solo album which didn’t have roots in progressive music at all. I guess it’s due to my love for the genre, both as a composer and as a listener. However, in regards to electronic music and chiptune music, more practical reasons comes into play. Before discovering chiptunes I used countless hours recording prog rock guitar tracks with which I never got really satisfied with. Also, I wasn’t interested in investing the hours required to hone my guitar skills enough to be able to play whatever I wanted sufficiently well. I started to get fed up and the pure MIDI way of composing came as a breath of fresh air as I didn’t feel I was hindered by my own skills (or lack thereof). The specific chiptune genre was merely a coincidence as discussed in the previous question, and I felt it was a platform I could bring something new into and still attract both chiptune and prog enthusiasts. Now that I’m moving a bit away from the chiptune genre, I’m starting to converge back to more traditional prog rock only with less guitar and more synth focus.


ALEX: Have you ever been in a band, virtual band, or otherwise collaborated with another musician? Have you ever composed any music for a video game? Live performances? There are chiptune cons and other conventions that would love to hear this sort of stuff done live.


KARTMAZE: Yes, I played guitar in a prog rock band a few years back where I also did most of the song writing. We never got to play any live gigs, but we sounded quite good actually.


At the moment I’m part of what I guess you can call a virtual band called Megalixir. We are 4 people (2 from Buffalo, NY (guitars + bass guitar) and 1 from Houston, TX (drums) and myself who do MIDI synth programming). We make SNES [Super Nintendo Entertainment System] covers our own way from time to time and have fun doing it. We recently did a cover medley of a somewhat obscure game called Demon’s Crest, which I think turned out really well.

I have not composed any music for a proper video game yet, but something might be in the works.


To be honest I haven’t even considered doing any form of live gigs as Kartmaze. If I had to do one I think it would have to be a proper live performance with a band playing my music with me playing the guitar or something along those lines, and I’m not seeing that happen in the foreseeable future.


ALEX: What are your views on prog, electronic music, rock, and other genres of music and how do you think they affect others’ view on musicianship and music in general?


KARTMAZE: Prog is what matters to me as a musician and as fan of music. However, I also respect all kinds of other music as well, especially those genres which requires some form of musicianship. Electronic music has for me mainly become more of a channel to distribute my prog music through, but I really enjoy other forms of non-progressive electronic music as well such as synthwave/outrun 80s synth music (e.g. Mitch Murder and Lost Years) and more traditional lounge and chillout electronica. However, I stay far FAR away from dubstep.


The thing with prog is that you often need to listen to a song two, three or maybe ten times before it really starts growing on you, and most people usually like to think a song is catchy right away. And many people honestly don’t find prog catchy at all. Prog is something many have to be introduced to in small doses before really being able to appreciate it, I think, and it’s quickly dismissed by lots of people. Others think that prog artists are just a bunch of show-offs and believe they try to play as technical as possible just for the sake of playing technical (although, in some cases they might actually be right on that one).


ALEX: What instruments do you play and what software or hardware do you use?


KARTMAZE: I play the guitar and a little bit of piano. I program all my music in MIDI note by note in Reaper using a wide variety of VST plugins such as LennarDigital Sylenth1, Superior Drummer 2.0, Plogue Chipsounds and EastWest Symphonic Orchestra.


ALEX: Now that Seven Journeys to a New Home is finished, what do you have planned in the future?


KARTMAZE: A new Kartmaze album is about to be wrapped up. I entered a studio in town September 1st for proper mixing and mastering and I’m expecting it to be released during this fall. It will be both very progressive and melodic, a bit more dynamic than Seven Journeys and most importantly less chip and more “hi-fi”. Also, it will be a concept album. After that I’m thinking of maybe bringing my guitar a tad more back into my music, mostly for some texture to make the music less sterile and synthetic.


ALEX: Last thing before you go! What similar artists would you recommend, chiptune, prog, or otherwise?


KARTMAZE: I’m careful with comparing my music with others’, but genre wise, if you’re looking for progressive synth music, I’d recommend artists like Jordan Rudess, Derek Sherinian or Vince DiCola. Of the much lesser known artists I would recommend checking out Ubiktune’s artists C-jeff, coda, Zantilla, Shnabubula, and Fearofdark, just to mention a few.


You can find Kartmaze on http://www.kartmaze.bandcamp.com and http://www.soundcloud.com/kartmaze/. The new album is scheduled to come out in October 2014.

About the author – Alexander Emenheiser is an electronic progressive rock/pop artist (http://www.soundcloud.com/adesyndicate/) and Flash animator on YouTube (http://www.youtube.com/adesyndicate/).


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