The Nintendo mobile is a solo instrument no more. Lovers of the Korg DS-10 cartridge for the Nintendo DS handheld are making their own ensembles. And one such trio is a selection of who’s who in Japanese game music.
The Korg DS Trio performed a celebrity concert after the Tokyo Game Show. GameSetWatch has an extensive interview with the three. Nobuyoshi Sano (composer, Ridge Racer series) and Yasunori Mitsuda (Chrono Cross and Chrono Trigger) are two familiar names, joined by Michio Okamiya of Final Fantasy hard rock cover band The Black Mages. All three had input into the creation of the DS-10; two connected over drinks. (That’s one of my favorite places to have product meetings, coincidentally.) As a trio, they have the unique opportunity to cover their own music.
It’s interesting me, this aesthetic interest in miniaturizing and making the DS into this sort of musical device. It’s an interest that has been particularly strong traditionally in Japan, it seems. They have a lot to say about DS-10 and game music:
GameSetInterview: Korg DS Trio Talk App Creation, EXTRA Concert
Of course, part of the vision of DS-10 was to create a democratic tool for music creation, not just a toy for some of Japan’s leading game composers. (Hey, they do need to unwind, too!)
ThisIsNot shares his own DS-10 jam, this one a four-way jam in Melbourne, above. (Thanks for sending us the tip! You may have seen the jam blogged elsewhere, but I think some of the sites missed the video, which gives you some idea what they were up to.) He writes:
I was invited by Jed to join a korg ds-10 jam at More Bass recently as part of 13 years of IF records
there was Jed, Enclave, one others and myself playing. We didn’t sync the DS’s over wi-fi or anything and had no pre planned approach , so this was purely improvisation and jamming along.
4 way nintendo ds jam with korg ds-10 [Acid Box Blues]
Lastly, our friends over at Boing Boing’s Offworld gaming blog have been all about the DS-10 lately. Receptors, aka 8-bit Operators curator Jeremy Colosine, has an exclusively DS-10 album. (Okay, the novelty is wearing off a bit after the all-Tenori-On and all-Kaossilator album and whatnot, but if it’s musically satisfying for the maker and the music’s good, I’m game!) It’s free for download from last.fm, so the music-per-dollar equation is off the charts.
If you haven’t yet seen it, you should definitely check out the DS-10-as-talkbox video demo, but the man who created it – Jetdaisuke – now puts together everything mobile we’ve been talking about for the last six months and plays, all at once, Bloom (iPhone / iPod touch), Mokugyo (with Cat) (iPhone / iPod touch), ElektroPlankton (DS, by Tenori-On creator Toshio Iwai), and Korg DS-10 (DS), plus a Korg Kaossilator. Impressive, but it is missing a Game Boy running Nanoloop and LSDJ, a PSP running PSPSEQ and PSP Rhythm, a Palm, a Windows Mobile device, a Nokia, rjdj, LPDJ, a SIDstation – the battle is on.
For those of you who are sick of mobile music, watch this video and see how high your blood pressure can go!
In fact, now, with the Game Developer Conference coming up, I think we need a DS Boys’ Choir with one hundred of these things playing at once, like a swarm of so many digital bees. Anyone know a good party to crash?