Does it Sound Good? Tchip Tchip, Vol. 3 by Electronic System (1974)

June 14, 2022

(Warning): I went into this album blind and had a lot of fun with it that way, if you would like to do the same please refrain from reading before listening. I only recommend this if you have a bit of patience though. 

So I decided to use a random album generator to pick an album to listen to and review. It came up with Tchip Tchip by Electronic System (you can access most streaming services from the page in the link). It’s an interesting time. So far I’m on song two, the first song was a version of the song that I only have ever {heard} referred to as The Chicken Dance. 

It’s early electronic music and there are sections that shine (like the chorus [can you call it that when there aren’t vocals?] on Stay With me for example). The synths sound nice when they’re playing chords. It’s odd though, it mostly sounds Mort Garson-esque but there’s a normal piano playing some soft rock chords. 

There are so many nice sounds here (again think Mort Garson) but they’re arranged in things like covers of The Chicken Dance. The album feels like a demonstration of the potential of electronic music. Like this would be used commercially or something to advertise what you can do with a Moog Synth. 

Except then there’s these super simple other acoustic (I think) instrumentations, like guitar, drums, and piano that are used as a backing track that would feel right at home as a preset to play along to on a cheap keyboard. There was a practice room in my piano teachers house as a kid with a keyboard and all I can picture is that. 

Despite all this there’s one song so far I really like (I’m on track 7 of 8 currently) called Funny Kouly. It’s so unabashedly silly sounding and it makes me smile because of how fun and funny it is. Also while I listened to it the phrase Yoinky Sploinky kept popping in my head because that’s what it sounds like. It’s the perfect song to hit the Yoinky Sploinky to (if you’re familiar). I think the Chicken Dance cover (titled Tchip Tchip) would be similar if the chicken dance wasn’t quite so repetitive.

I’m on the 8th and final track now and so far I am floored at how starkly better than the other songs it is. The simple backing instrumentation switched to something slower and jazzy with really emotive piano and the synths shine together as an accent to it all. This song is genuinely really pretty and I feel lucky to have found it. Thank you album generator. I’m realizing now that this last song takes up 14 minutes of the album’s 33 minute run time and I am very glad. 

Okay, now on to the questions. 

Does It Sound Good?: typically it doesn’t sound stellar, there are a lot of nice sounds there but the arrangements are generally too simple to make any of them shine well. 

Did I like it?: sort of, I had a lot of fun with it but there are only two songs I really like (Funny Kouly, and Sky Lab). 

Do I recommend it?: in it’s entirety? Only somewhat. I only really recommend Stay With Me because it has some synths that are just begging to be sampled, Funny Kouly for its novelty and silliness, and Sky Lab just because it’s just genuinely a great soft grooving jazz piece with a 1974 Moog solo. 

This was a fun album, particularly a fun one to go in blind to because the shock of the latter half was amazing. I might see if I can find a nice copy of it so I can play the last song which I assume is the whole B side. 

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