Thursday, May 1, 2008

The Arcades Project

Via here, a strange and intriguingly obsessive piece of nostalgia recreating the sounds of 1980's video game arcades. The length of each recording seems to be in real time, mirroring the black hole of time actually spent in the arcade. In fact, the author has recorded playing each game in full, then overlaid them and added the sounds of the coins going into the slots and other precisely observed ambient effects.

Small but significant shifts in age and game development are picked up between the 1981 and 1983 recordings. The screechy planet splintering sounds of Asteroids giving way to the sing song bleeps of Donkey Kong for example. The whole thing is kinda like those recordings of rare birds made by twitchers, or a digitally obsessed Nicholson Baker, and strangely poignant for a certain period of time wasting in life.

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