I’ll be honest — there are so many genres, subgenres, and crossovers in today’s music scene, it’s hard for me to keep up. While I tend to stick with my familiar indie, punk, and pop rock acts, I Fight Dragons is the first “chiptune” band I’ve given a shot, and they definitely make me regret not getting into the genre earlier!

The Chicago-based band caught my eye last week at Warped Tour with their brightly colored merch booth with pixelated text sprawled across the top reading “I FIGHT DRAGONS.” With a title like that, I had to check them out. Just take a look at the eye-catching cover from their most recent album, KABOOM!, released through Photo Finish / Atlantic Records:

I Fight Dragons combines all of my favorite things: layered vocal harmonies (former collegiate a’cappella girl here), power pop-punk guitar riffs and hooks, creative lyrics, and most interestingly, electronic noises from Nintendo gaming systems like Game Boy. For those unfamiliar with Nintendocore, the genre incorporates synthesizer noises, 8-bit sounds, and electronic drum beats. The sounds are perfectly placed in their songs and add a serious dose of nostalgia and fun. When the men perform live, guitarist/keyboardist Bill Prokopow produces these noises with a Guitar Hero controller, and other band members wrap Nintendo controllers around their microphones.

But most important of all, I Fight Dragons is a talented band that doesn’t take themselves too seriously. They are nerdy without being cheesy, experimental without being off-putting, and, above all, happily self-aware. Check out their 1980s Nintendo-inspired music video for “Save World, Get Girl” featuring exploding pixels and a campy, nostalgia-fueled battle to get the girl:

In a scene where there is so much recycling and repetition, I Fight Dragons is doing something refreshingly different. They are as talented as they are fun, and I can’t wait for their second album! Check them out on the rest of Warped Tour and cross your fingers they return to the West Coast soon!

For more information:
I Fight Dragons Official Site
I Fight Dragons Facebook