Label: Long Lost Release Date: 25/06/10 Link: Bandcamp Hipster Youth is a project of Aidan Wall, the man also behind bedroom folk Porn On Vinyl. Not that you'd know. What we have here is still bedroom made but in a totally different discipline – chiptune and 8bit mixed in with guitars and a pop ethic. The album opens promisingly. The first song, 1:31 long and entitled 'Pop Song for Those With Short Attention Spans' Sounds very much like an even more lo-fi recreation of something from Atlas Sound's 'Let The Blind Lead Those That Can See But Cannot Feel' with a bit of added Chill wave (though I'm not sure if Wall means this or if it's ended up his way). Hidden in this opener is a clue of what we are getting in for – the chiptune element, an 8-bit extravaganza about to unfurl. This chiptune that proceeds isn't in the DJ Scotch Egg style, mean and fierce, but more in the style of pixelh8 and such – cheery tunes full of circuit bent electronics. It isn't for everyone this – chiptune as a genre is quite a niche to like, often composed on old gameboys (Pixelh8 has even released a patch to modify a gameboy cartredge) and it hasn't taken a lot of people. Not everything here is chiptune (there's a range of more traditional instruments and even the electronics range from chiptune to house style beats), but it will take quite an open mind to listen to this. There are highs on here, my personal favourate is 'Myself or Something', and some more Indulgent tracks, let's say, like the epic 9 minute 'I Lost My Corpse Paint' and the slightly grating 'Pale Girls'. There is a lot there – Wall creates an atmosphere like very few other bands can create, a sort of panoramic like Panda Bear or Atlas Sound create, with no overly dominant areas, but a good scene over all. My main criticism of this work is that there is little refinement and movement, especially in the first half of the album. There is a tendency to wander when it's best to try and change an element to continue a good rhythm, or cut out a repetition that is old. For example, 'House Song' creates a great rhythm but just repeats it a few times and stops, and in 'I Lost My Corpse Paint' the song grows old fast and by 3 minutes in you find yourself wondering if the remaining 2/3 will change significantly, because it's getting old. They do change, but not enough to warrant a song of that length and it tests the patience. The other problem here is the recording. Low quality recording can be effective (for example, Wavvves by Wavves), but here, where there are some fantastic beats, you find yourself craving a the songs to be recorded again; It's difficult to hear 'Super Fun Hipster Suicide Party' or it's successor 'Thursday Nights' for what they are – well crafted songs with great rhythms and tunes. But with equalizing that is questionable at best and poor recording quality it's so easy to loose these qualities. And these are qualities that need to be shown – Wall is a great musician and composer that needs to be given an opportunity to bloom in a place where he can be recorded at his best in the clearest possible way. This album shows talent but in it's current state doesn't reach it's potential. Photobucket