Old Tracker Stuff by Fanu
Posted by Cameron Vanderzanden on
Tags: 1990s, 2020s, album artwork, collection, digital release, downtempo, drum & bass, music, review, screenshot, tracker music.
Old Tracker Stuff by Fanu. Compilation of old .xm modules mostly from the Most Valuable Playaz catalog, released March 2022 by Fanu on his bandcamp page. Digital release, flac, 16bit/44.1khz, ~242M.
Tracklist below is from the bandcamp release page. Bit depth, bitrate, filesize, and track durations from my downloaded copy. BPM I tap-tempoed myself (and is probably inaccurate).
|No.||Artist / Title||BPM||Dur.|
|01.||Fanu / Woodz n Moodz||180||06:34|
|02.||Fanu / Black Velvet||170||06:01|
|03.||Fanu / 2000 Years||170||06:52|
|04.||Fanu / Eklipz||170||06:29|
|05.||Fanu / Silent Resistance||083||01:55|
|06.||Fanu / Steppin'||069||04:26|
|07.||Fanu / Nighttime in the North||081||03:57|
|08.||Fanu / Pimeys||125||06:31|
The first four tracks on this comp are relatively traditional drum & bass. Woodz 'n Moodz, Black Velvet, and 2000 Years are atmospheric pieces with playful drum programming, "intelligent" DnB of the kind I associate with Good Looking or maybe the Artcore series of ambient jungle compilations. (The kind of thing I generally like to listen to and play). The drums in Eklipz are a bit more tough, the bass a bit darker, than the previous three, though the smooth pads bring it around and even it out. Good stuff.
The next three are chunky downtempo / instrumental hip-hop bits. Faded head-nodding music, something Fanu is great at. Silent Resistance features some piano with delay and a beat; Steppin' is a hypnotic, sedate tune; Nighttime In The North sounds like a drive or a walk at night down a dimly lit street & is my favorite of these three.
Pimeys, the final track on the comp, is more in line with what I expect from late '90s tracker weirdness. Hazy somewhat lo-fi samples, sine or tri bass, a heavy beat played at the standard 125 BPM. A nice tune.
As I mentioned above most of these songs were released in tracker module format (specifically Fasttracker 2 .xm) in 97-99 on Most Valuable Playaz. I first encountered them in that form a year or two ago while digging through files.scene.org. They've been adjusted slightly for this compilation - the volume levels seem more even and I hear a little EQing. This is the best these tracks have sounded, I think. (Not having to dig through scene.org for days to find them is a plus, too).
Old Tracker Stuff can be found now on Fanu's bandcamp page. I've played a few of the tracks from it in recent mixes, notably Pimeys in number 256 and Black Velvet in 266. As a last word I've got to say it makes me really happy to see an artist acknowledge their old tracker work, thanks for that Fanu.
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