Synthesis – Approaching a New Instrument

The two decades during which synthesizers shrunk from the size of a room to that of a briefcase brought new sounds into the world and numerous approaches of how to control oscillators, filters and envelopes. 43-minute program with works by Conrad Schnitzler, Daphne Oram, Erkki Kurenniemi, Laurie Spiegel, and others, generated between the early sixties and 1977 (plus an exception).

Featured cover art: Suzanne Ciani – Lixiviation Ciani/Musica Inc. 1969-1985

Don Preston – Analog Heaven #5

part 5 of a 26-minute suite from the Mothers Of Invention keyboardist, whose input helped designing the Mini-Moog (1975, Sub Rosa)

Erkki Kurenniemi – Sähkösoittimen ääniä #1

the pioneer of electronic art in Finland designed his own instruments and experimened with user interfaces for them (1971, Love Records)

Kühn – Tomograph

the exceptional Max Brand Synthesizer, custom made by Robert Moog in the sixties, being played half a century later (2009, Moozak)

Conrad Schnitzler – 09/1975

improvisation with prerecorded cassettes containing so called solo tracks, created with the EMS Synthi (1975, Bureau B)

Bernard Parmegiani – Versailles…peut-être 1

imaginative music by the former director of the Musique-Image departement at French tv station ORTF (1977, Transversales Disques)

Daphne Oram – Mermaid (Excerpt)

music from a machine that converts pictures into sound, invented by the English composer herself and known as Oramics (early 1960s, Young Americans)

Ruth White – Evening Harmony

setting a poem by French poet Charles Baudelaire to music (1969, Black Mass Rising)

Laurie Spiegel – Appalachian Grove II

researching a radically new system for controlling synthesizers at Bell Labs in New Jersey (1974, Unseen Worlds)

Seesselberg – Speedy Achmed (Verhaltensanweisung)

two West-German brothers presenting their self-built synthesizer mainly at art galleries and Modern Art museums (1973, Plate Lunch)

Suzanne Ciani – Lixiviation

an icon of both the US-experimental underground and the commercial advertising world, this is from Ciani’s film collaboration with kinetic artist Ronald Mallory, using a Buchla 200 (1970, Finders Keepers Records)

Tim Blake – Metro Logic

of space-rock fame from working with Gong and Hawkwind, Blake brings electronic instruments into a live setting, along with laser lighting (1977, Esoteric Recordings) 

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