Tag Archives | synthesizers

The Soviet Synthesizer That Bridged Electronic Music And The Occult

Boing Boing on a bizarre, pioneering musical instrument, suppressed in its day, which built on occultist concepts and attempted to unify the senses:
You don't play the ANS synthesizer with a keyboard. Instead you etch images onto glass sheets covered in black putty and feed them into a machine that shines light through the etchings, trigging a wide range of tones. It's a nearly forgotten Russian synthesizer designed by Evgeny Murzin in 1938. The synth was named after and dedicated to the experimental composer and occultist Alexander Nikolayevich Scriabin (1872–1915). Today it sits behind a rope at the Glinka Museum of Musical Culture, almost forgotten and seldom used. A few artists have recorded albums with it over the years, mostly notably the late occultists/electronic musicians Coil who traveled to Russia in 2002:
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Brian Eno’s Imaginary Landscapes

In a short film titled Imaginary Landscapes, electronic music pioneer Brian Eno discusses the nature of boundary-pushing art -- on his work as a synthesist, on the the danger of having too many options in a technologically advanced world, and on producing music that creates "imaginary landscapes" both by evoking physical locations and by purposefully mingling with the setting in which a listener is located:
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Dehumanization In Contemporary Music

minajThis clip of pioneering German electronic composer Karlheinz Stockhausen might answer some of the questions one has after watching this year's Grammys. Does contemporary music still have the potential of touching basic human concerns such as love and hate, can it live, is it really valid art? Stockhausen's answer: the synthesized, auto-tuned music of today reflects a form of evolution as our best and brightest transform to a post-human, or "supra-human" state, got it?
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The Therapeutic Singing House

To be unveiled in New Orleans -- a home equipped with a drone synthesizer that produces pleasing tones reflecting the surroundings. I hope this architectural innovation catches on everywhere:
Demonstration of latest Quintron invention called THE SINGING HOUSE. This is an analog "drone synth" can be installed into any building in order to provide its inhabitants with a pleasing chord that is constantly changed by the weather. Preliminary studies have show that these soothing sounds can bring mental relaxation and healing to the modern home or institution. The music is actually played by the skies above. No two days sound the same.
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