Album cover Super - Atari Blitzkrieg
SuperAtari Blitzkrieg8/10

Atari Blitzkrieg - Super

27 Nov 2011 row1

It seems a bit odd that it has taken Atari Blitzkrieg this long to release a fully fledged video game album, even more odd is that it's dedicated to the 20th anniversary of the world's greatest video game console and not something related to his moniker. Given the extreme limitations of the old Atari sound chips it's probably a very good thing that the album is built around the sounds of the Super Nintendo Entertainment System.

As mentioned, the album's twelve tracks are all based on samples from old 16-bit Nintendo games games. It would have been easy enough for Atari himself to have just looped a sample, added some drums and come out with an acceptable result, but instead he enlisted Krohme, Jazz Spastiks, magOwl, Nameless and Marink D to work it into their own style and sound. Tracks such at 'Super' and 'Fantastisk' keep that traditional upbeat Nintendo "fun sound", but I found that the slightly more disquieting sounds of 'Something 2 Live 4', 'Sinner' and 'Striving 2wards Freshness' (complete with Notorious B.I.G. Super Nintendo sample from 'Juicy') better suited to Atari and his core principles cyberpunk, technology, violence, corruption and post-apocalyptic dystopias.

Atari's recognisable flow continues on this album, alternating between long lines delivered at breakneck speeds and then a moment of calm before the next storm. At times it is difficult to keep up with what Atari is saying, so repeated listens are required to grasp that last quip, and this of course adds to the album's longevity. The odd T.V. spot is also thrown in to increase the level of nostalgia, the one about parents breaking down in tears when hearing their children talk about Nintendo Shrooms is particularly great. Of the six guest rappers Smigg Dirtee produces the best result on the standout track 'L.A. Gear', not that he is head and shoulders above the other guest rappers, but a combination of it just being Atari and himself and a fantastic magOwl beat. Breez Evahflowin' may have retired from making LPs but not from rapping, he appears on 'Wegotchabak' with John Ronbinson and with Rapper Pooh and site favourite Motion Man on the slightly underwhelming track 'Think Twice' which doesn't really grab your attention until Atari comes on and talks about his romantic relationship with the Queen of England.

This year has seen a few good-great albums fall into the video game rap genre, and while it is close, Super sits at the top of that pile. From start to finish it is a nostalgic, fresh and most importantly, fantastic sounding and rotatable album. Extra credit goes to Atari for including the sampled games in the liner notes (wish he had also done the T.V. spots), having an awesome cover, and notably like so many of his projects donating portions of sales to charity (in this case Bright Beginnings, Inc.).

For those video game enthusiatics, the following games have been sampled: Earthbound (Mother 2), Super Mario World, Ghoul Patrol, Ruin Arm, Zombies Ate My Neighbors, Illusion of Gaia, Uncharted Waters: New Horizons, ActRaiser, Romancing SaGa 2, Solid Runner and Jim Lee's Wild C.A.T.S.

Sardless Tracks

  • Striving 2wards Freshness
  • L.A. Gear
  • Something 2 Live 4

Track Listing

  1. Earthbound
  2. Super
  3. Wegotchabak feat. Breez Evahflowin and John Robinson
  4. Striving 2wards Freshness
  5. U and Eye
  6. L.A. Gear feat. Smigg Dirtee
  7. Sinner
  8. Fantastisk
  9. Ackwrite
  10. Something 2 Live 4
  11. Think Twice (Krohmes Sld Rnnr RMX)<br/>feat. Rapper Pooh, Motion Man and Breez Evahflowin
  12. Super (Krohmes Jeep Liberty RMX)