Open Mic: What Electronic Music Track Changed Your Life?

Open Mic: Readers Mark Mosher and Bob Tarmac responded to a recent post about the sound design of Forbidden Planet, noting that they had been obsessed and inspired by the soundtrack. And since the 50’s, there’s been a growing body of interesting and exciting electronic music that, for whatever reason, flips a switch in people’s brains, making you think “I want to do that, too”.

I know many readers were inspired by Wendy Carlos’s Switched On Bach and her music for Clockwork Orange; others by the over-the-top shredding of Keith Emerson on classics like Lucky Man; others by the Vangelis soundtrack to Blade Runner or Moroder’s 1978 (!) soundtrack to Midnight Express.

Was there a track that blew your mind when you first heard it or that flipped that switch and made you think that you needed to do electronic music, too?

Let us know what electronic music track changed your life and why – and you may introduce some readers to some great music that they don’t know about.!

131 thoughts on “Open Mic: What Electronic Music Track Changed Your Life?

  1. I think mine was Archangel by Burial. Really opened my eyes up to electronica that had real deep feeling and emotion. I think it was probably a track by The Prodigy that really changed my whole taste in music haha

  2. When I first heard Karlheinz Stockhausen’s Mikrophonie 1 in 1970, my life was definitely changed.
    I became increasingly interested in all forms of electronic music after that.
    However, my all time favorite electronic composition is Wendy Carlos’ “Sonic Seasonings”.

  3. Brian Eno’s Apollo was definitely important to me.

    I’m still amazed that someone who calls himself a non-musician could make music that’s so beautiful and haunting.

  4. I grew up playing Classical piano. When I first heard Switched-On Bach and Delia Derbyshire’s “Doctor Who” theme in my early teens, I suddenly realized how flexible “electronic music” could be.

  5. Mitchell Froom’s soundtrack to “Cafe Flesh,” the world’s only intelligent porno flick. The music is all but rockabilly in places and clearly played on synths of the time. Its pure, live-style analog synth with some real sweat in it. I was floored by people like Tomita and Schulze, but Froom is the one who caused me to realize that you could play in real-time and cook with little-to-NO studio embellishment. What Keith Emerson did set the standard for BIG, but Froom showed me that mere mortals could have a piece of that, too.

  6. Not a song in particular, rather a way to arrange tracks and bring them to life : it was a DJ session (even if I’m not into DJing myself) by Tiësto, his concert in 2003 @ Gelredome Arnhem.

  7. When i was 12 some teacher brought the “White Noise” LP. It became very popular in my school in Geneva (1972). The last track, “The Visitation” was and still is my favorite. There was also this track by Matching Mole w. Eno called “Gloria Gloom”, the “Summer” side of Sonic Seasoning on Walter Carlos double LP and Kraftwerk Autobahn.
    But the very best thing i heard at that time i think was for me the soundtrack of a Daniel Schmid movie called “La Paloma” supposedly by Peer Raben. Really frightning …

  8. John Foxx – Underpass / Metamatic 1980 .. I was a ten years old, wen i heard this track at a friends house after school in his attic, model railway, the smell of saw dust & toy trains, this 7″ single was put on a small box record player ( borrowed from an older friend ) the moment i heard it was an epiphany moment, the cold pure electronic difference of a cr78 phasing out around wobbling polymoogs & arp axxes almost stopped my heart. I said to me friend “This is wot im going to do”. Id heard some jarre b4 id even dressed in a man machine outfit for my first school disco, but they felt so out of reach. At 10 years old i didn’t really know what i was listening to, nor could i afford tapes & albums.. but that day & that record changed my life for ever. still to this day after 28 years in the music industry i think John Foxx’s metamatic to be the best album ive ever heard. Many electronic artists came to fruition in the 80s.. but Foxx was the 1 that opened the door & allowed them in.. for example, Depeche mode borrowed Foxxs arp2600 for the recording of speak & spell, which was also recorded in Foxxs studio. Numan, The Buggles, Wendy Carlos, Vangelis, Soft Cell, Moroder & OMD also have large places in my heart but Foxx, ( whom i finally saw at the roundhouse last year ) unwittingly is without doubt the modern god father of british electronic music.

  9. Zodiac’s Disco Alliance and Space’s Magic Fly LPs along with Jarre’s Magnetic Fields 2 which I heard in early childhood left long lasting impression that synthesizer music is something very exciting, beautiful and cosmic. Then in teens I discovered Kraftwerk, saw Telex on TV, found a bit of italo on old tapes, became a fan of Sigue Sigue Sputnik’s cyberpunk. After playing hard rock and heavy metal I switched on.

  10. Zodiac’s Disco Alliance and Space’s Magic Fly LPs along with Jarre’s Magnetic Fields 2 which I heard in early childhood left long lasting impression that synthesizer music is something very exciting, beautiful and cosmic. Then in teens I discovered Kraftwerk, saw Telex on TV, found a bit of italo on old tapes, became a fan of Sigue Sigue Sputnik’s cyberpunk. After playing hard rock and heavy metal I switched on.

  11. As a Fan of Mr. Zappa, I liked when Frank bought a Synclavier. He made a n LP called Jazz From Hell. Tracks like Night School were played at a pace unknown to me at the time. It hurt your head to listen. So It wins a Grammy that year the LP for best Rock Instrumental.
    Hearing Aquatarkus on 8 track as a youth started me on the way…

  12. ” Metal ” by Gary Numan ’79 from his Pleasure Principle album.

    I was at a friends house and he had the “45 of ‘ Cars ‘
    and he was playing it on his record player. When the track was done,
    my friend flipped the “45 and started playing the ‘B’ side which was
    titled ” Metal ”

    This song blew my mind ! I had never heard music like
    that before. ‘ Cars ‘ was a ‘ POP ‘ song, but ‘ Metal ‘ was not POP
    at all. It was cryptic, dark, stark, and had a post apocolyptic
    edge to it….and my mind was blown.

    I asked my friend ” What is the name of that song and
    what band is that ? ” he answered ” It’s some guy named Gary Numan ”
    and so the next day I went to the record store looking for this song.

  13. Kraftwerk “The Robots” (track)
    Vangelis “Spiral” (album)
    JMJarre “Oxygen 4” (track)
    and Gary Numan’s “Are frieds electric?” (track).

  14. ‘Soil Festivities’ by Vangelis. I found the cassette in a local branch of Woolworths and it had a very intriguing cover. So I bought it on that alone. For years after that, I didn’t buy music on the basis of what I’d heard on the radio or recommendations etc. but buy examining covers and track titles and lengths and instruments used etc. all to assemble clues as to what the music might be like. To some extent, I still operate this way. With everything. All thanks to this, my third ever music purchase, for so amply rewarding my gamble.

  15. vince clarke: a founder of depeche mode, yaz (yazoo) and erasure is a MAJOR influence on me and my music. also omd and anything box. i can’t pinpoint a specific song, just these artists in general opened a HUGE world of music to me. vince’s studio is enough to blow the mind of ANY electronic musician!

  16. Great idea for a thread!

    The Doctor Who theme has got to be a huge, maybe even unconscious influence on every UK kid, including all the kids in Canada, Australia, NZ, SA, USA, etc. who got exposed to the Doctor at an early age! I was a huge fan of the 1980s version, too.

    Before one is old enough to buy records, the TV is a big influence (well, it was for kids growing up in the 70s!). I remember a short film on Canadian TV, a little vignette, about the history of Toronto with an animated skyline and music by Bach in a switched-on style. Never found it again though, not Carlos. On TVO, there was a show about computer programming called ‘Bits and Bytes” whose theme I later discovered was a pretty much a cover of Kraftwerk’s “Neon Lights”. Might as well steal from the best! Those were real ear-openers.

    A very early memory I have involves playing with my Dad’s stereo as an 7,8,9 year old (just post-Star Wars). I invented the Daft Punk compressor pumping sound on my own, thanks very much, at that age by hard whanging the big volume knob up and down in time with the beat, on every record I had! We should do a Dickens today and employ small children as auto-gate effects…

    I had one of those K-Tel novelty song albums, with one called “The Martian Hop” by the Ran-Dells (thank you, Google). I used to play it at normal level, until the one synthesized, heavily reverbed bleep-bleep-bleep sound comes in (at the key change), at which point I’d jam it FULL VOLUME for a few seconds, for the whole house to share in the electronic joy.

    At the age of buying records, the usual suspects emerge — Cars, by Gary Numan, totally blew me away, and it still does. Yazoo was next, and I’ve been a lifelong fan of that late 70s, early 80s sound ever since (DM, Vince Clarke, Blancmange, John Foxx, Kraftwerk, YMO, etc.).

    1. Switched on Bach not by Carlos : Delia Derbyshire did something before Walter, cuting, slicing and pasting bits of tape to make some JS Bach – it’s on youtube…

  17. Duran Duran’s “Planet Earth”

    Suddenly, a new world of sound and texture was opened for me – a great departure from the American Rock that played constantly on radio in the early 80’s.

    Still gives me the shivers!

  18. Ministry – Stigmata

    I also agree with the poster who said “Dr. Who” was their greatest influence.

    Plastikman’s” ping-pong” a few is what got me back to making minimal tracks.

  19. Daft punk’s robot rock it probably what first really stuck in my brain, and triggered my slide into electronic music, but the Glitch Mob’s album Drink the Sea, as well as My Robot Friend’s “Robot Highschool” really opened my eyes to what beautiful, and powerful music electronic music can be.

    Of course, things came before and after, and there are other things that i found fascinating, roughly around the same time (like the clockwork orange soundtrack, or both the shiny toy guns and peter schilling version of Major Tom) but Daft Punk, The Glitch Mob, and My Robot Friend were really what flung me into electronic music.

    Also, not exactly electronic influences, but i’de be remiss to to mention Murray Gold, the current (and fantastic) composer for doctor who, as well as the Valve Studio Orchestra/ Aperture Science Pysioacoustics Laboratory. Murray Gold and the musicians that work at Valve have been surprisingly influential to me. Also, Fats Waller’s big band music is probably what spawned my penchant for odd time signatures (swing time, 2/4, 6/8, ect) so i feel i should mention him as well.

  20. Every track from Propellerhead’s Decksanddrumsandrockandroll – blew me away in the late 90s. Then it was on to Air’s Moon Safari – I’d never heard anything like it.

  21. Daft Punk’s Homework album! Discovery was pretty neat too (high life was a cool track) but as I kid I remembered being mindfucked by Alive as well as Revolution 909.

  22. Sorry to post twice, but another major “switch flipper” moment was hearing a demo on the Commodore64 called “Synth Sample” that featured SID versions of Carlos’ Clockwork Orange Theme (Beethoviana), the theme to “The Stationary Ark”, and a few other current synth tracks. The fellow that did it was named Georg Feil. I’ll bet I’m not the only person out there for whom SynthSample was a big moment. Thanks, Georg, wherever you are !!

  23. When I was a wee little boy I heard “Runaway” by Del Shannon, and “Telstar” by the Tornados, each featuring the Clavioline, or in the case of “Runaway”, the Musitron the artist own built version. I also like movies and TV that had music made with the Novachord. That got me interested and at school they showed a film about the New York Worlds Fair with “Music Concrete” and “OP” art. There is a comment in my 1st grade report card saying, “George has been making weird noises in class lately..” so I guess it was then. After “Switched on Bach” I started learning electronics just to make noises because the local music shops didn’t even know what I was asking about.

  24. For me it was hearing Wendy Carlos’ “Well Tempered Synthesizer” and “Clockwork Orange.” The former got me into a lot of different classical worlds I hadn’t explored before, but Clockwork Orange ignited a passion in me for what sound could do. Later I came to love David Borden’s work, along with Jan Hammer’s Mahavishnu Orchestra-era stuff. I got into Yes as well, although I have to say Patrick Moraz’ style was far more appealing to me than Rick Wakeman. Brian Eno was another profound influence on my development as an electronic composer.

  25. DJ Shadow’s “Endtroducing”

    I remember the first time I listened to it. It was on a pair of headphones on one of tower records listening stations. I was like 17 at the time and was into a lot of hip hop but this blew me away. I was scared, mesmerized, inspired, saddened, excited, all at once. Unreal piece of work. To this day very few works that I have heard come close to this.

  26. the prodigy experience – was just a kid but it flung me into rave, electronica, eventually warp records, techno, idm and so much more. I just remember listening to a copy on my walkman and seeing a glimpse of this crazy world I was too young to understand but somehow knew was a changing force. it was and still is fresh, fun and interesting. It’s influenced my own music so much, that record will never leave my collection.

  27. There were two distinct switch-flickings which have lead me to the world of electronic music and synthesisers that I so gleefully inhabit today.

    The first was hearing Daft Punk’s Around The World.. the video for which at a certain time was played between afternoon cartoons here in Australia. Maybe the programmers thought it was a TV show? Either way I remember loving this song.. and then realising it had only one line. I distinctly remember thinking as a 9 – 10 year old “How does a song with only three words not get boring?”

    The second flicking of a switch was around the same time; when I heard the bass sound from Bjork’s Army of Me.. that beautiful sequence running through almost the entire song still carries me somewhere nice!!

  28. It wasn’t just one for me. It was the accumulation of a lot of things that culminated around 1984-ish when I was first introduced to Depeche Mode. Once I heard their early stuff I was definitively hooked.

    But there had been a lot before that. Incidental music played during projections at the McLaughlin Planetarium in Toronto comes to mind, as does “Fly Like An Eagle” by Steve Miller, “Moonlight Feels Right” by Starbuck, “Baker Street” by Gerry Rafferty, various iterations of the Doctor Who theme, incidental music from The Six Million Dollar man and a plethora of other ’70s and ’80s tracks that – while not exclusively “synth” in makeup, featured electronic instruments high up in the mix.

  29. I had listened to various kinds of electronic music, Tangerine Dream and stuff, and never really got way into it (I was more into punk rock and jazz) but I remember the very moment I was turned forever. I think it was around 1993-4 and I bought this album “Ambient Works Volume II” by a fellow who called himself Aphex Twin on a whim. I had read about it in Details or some dumb shit, and really had no idea what to expect.

    Well… at some point a few friends and I were enjoying some mind-altering treats and I randomly threw it on. Hadn’t yet listened to it. My brain immediately flipped over, and nothing was the same for me after that.

  30. When I was eleven, I wanted to be a film director. And then one day my dad brought home the soundtrack to Chariots Of Fire. And that was it for filmmaking.

    The next year, cable TV came to my country (Dominican Republic, in case you’re curious) and the first thing I remember seeing was a Duran Duran show from when their first album was out. They played Planet Earth, Is There Anyone Out There, and of course Girls On Film. And that was it for everything else.

  31. Gary Numan – Cars
    Heard it on the radio while getting ready to go to class every day for several weeks. Found his albums in a local record shop along with Ultravox, Simple Minds, Japan etc.
    It was a huge change from “classic rock”.

  32. First was ‘send me an angel’ by real life, then ‘a drug against war’ by kmfdm and ‘radioactivity’ by kraftwerk, then ‘come to daddy’ from aphex twin, followed by ‘soilent green’ by wumpscut….in order in my life these are the tracks I heard that changed my thinking on music. There’s a few albums that contributed, by these are the tracks I heard and was immediately blown away.

  33. Daft Punk Homework — I was 16 and I used a gift certificate I was given for Christmas to buy the album. I listened to it non-stop for months. To this Teachers is still an amazing song.

  34. Wow ! Well….let’s see……

    Keith Emerson: Lucky Man
    The Edgar Winter Group: Frankenstein
    Pink Floyd: Welcome to the Machine
    Angel: Live Without A Net (Greg Guiffria’s work in the song Tower and his solo in On the Rocks)
    Styx: Come Sail Away and Renegade
    Jan Hammer: Crockett’s Theme from Miami Vice
    B-52’s: Butterbean
    Billy Thorpe: Children of the Sun
    Alice Cooper: Clones (We’re All)
    Rush: (All of the Synth Era Albums)
    Erik Norlander: Everything !!!
    Tuomas Holopainen of Nightwish

  35. When I was around 14 or so I discovered MTV Amped. Was when I was first being introduced to electronic music. There were a few tracks that changed my life, mostly being of the disco/house sort. I remember falling asleep to Amped and this song came on that just grabbed me by the balls. It was Music Sounds Better with you by Stardust. Other tracks that did it for me where Daft Punk – Around the world (still one of my most favorite house tunes ever) and Aphex Twin – Windowlicker, (which completely blew my mind with all the twisted sounds and threw me into an “IDM” frenzy for quite a few years).

    I think the single most important track that formed the basis of my electronic music lust was Tangerine Dream – Love On A Real Train. First heard it on the movie Risky Business. I had to of been like 11 years old or something and just loved it. I was to lazy to find out who it was back then, but it stuck with me. After

  36. When I was around 14 or so I discovered MTV Amped. Was when I was first being introduced to electronic music. There were a few tracks that changed my life, mostly being of the disco/house sort. I remember falling asleep to Amped and this song came on that just grabbed me by the balls. It was “Music Sounds Better With You” by Stardust. Other tracks that did it for me where Daft Punk – Around the world (still one of my most favorite house tunes ever) and Aphex Twin – Windowlicker, (which completely blew my mind with all the twisted sounds and threw me into an “IDM” frenzy for quite a few years).

    I think the single most important track that formed the basis of my electronic music lust was Tangerine Dream – Love On A Real Train. First heard it on the movie Risky Business. I had to of been like 11 years old or something and just loved it. I was to stupid to find out who it was back then, but it stuck with me. After the fact I would just watch Risky Business just to hear Love On A Real Train. That song is just pure gold!

  37. This is such a wonderful idea for a thread.

    I first heard Pierre Schaeffer’s concrete etudes when I was in ninth grade. I saved up some money and bought a tape recorder and a microkorg. I had been playing piano and trumpet and composing since I was a child, and electronics began to figure prominently in my music. I eventually discovered the fantastic timbres in Varese’s “Deserts,” Berio’s “Thema,” Stockhausen’s “Kontakte,” Davidovsky’s synchorism series, Curtis Roads’s “Now,” and Tod Machover’s works.

    I’ve now met Machover (a true inspiration for me) and am soon to receive my first degree in composition. The University of Louisville is playing one of my electroacoustic pieces in their New Music Festival at the beginning of November (and I am from nowhere near the school). Electronic music changed my life.

  38. While I can site all the common “sources” that others have on this thread as blowing my young mind (kraftwerk, wendy / walter, all brit synthpop bands & early electro), the one person that got me thinking “hey… I can do this and not have to be in a band” was Howard Jones. However, it was 808 State that finally inspired me to actually get some gear…. and get going.

    Actually just saw Howard play this month and I couldn’t get over his horrible rainbow sparkle trousers. It ruined the night for me. blech…!

  39. I know and love Gary Numan, Depeche Mode, New Order and so on, but my approach to electronic music came definitely from the darker side of music. What really hit my brain AND my stomach was the boomy bass of Push by Invincible Limit, played in an underground club (important, because you need a serious woofer at a certain volume level to feel the bass). Or Devil Dance from the same band.

    Red Lorry Yellow Lorry – Jipp
    Wall of Voodoo – Mexican Radio
    The Cure – Boys don’t cry
    The Jesus and Mary Chain – Kill Surf City
    DAF – Der Mussolini
    The Sisters of Mercy – Temple of Love

    Skinny Puppy, Clan of Xymox, Black Tape for a Blue Girl etc.

  40. For me : Equinoxe from JmJ. Back from south America in an Air France plane, with these old ruber airplaine headphones. I was a kid and listed in loop all the way.

  41. Popcorn by Hot Butter back in 1971 definitely had an influence, though I didn’t like the song. But the sequenced bassline’s sound was fascinating to me. I was also influenced by TD’s Rubycon, Phaedra and Ricochet and Klaus Schulze’s tendency to gear porn. And of course Kraftwerk! I loved the walking lights of step sequencers (and I still do!). Ralf Huetter stated in an interview in the German “Zeit” magazine: “It feels good to be part of the machine.”
    There was a more “rational” and “intelectual” and “cool” attitude towards music when playing synthesizers and sequencers. Not that grimacing that guitarists use to make. Don’t get me wrong, I do respect good guitarists, though some tended to be intolerant of electronic music. Pure electronic musicians still have a problem to deliver a “wild” performance. There are other comlementary specialists to fill that gap (laseriums then and visual artists now)
    My love to synthesizers ever kept me an open ear for all kinds of genres where electronics are involved.

  42. Originally the 8 bit video game soundtracks and the music that was popular in the 90s. But the first real epiphany was in a Swiss used record shop where I picked up the Tangerine Dream live record “Encore”. The track Monolight blew my mind and still does to this day. For me, it’s the definition of “warm” in electronic music. Someone mentioned Telefon Tel Aviv. I have similar feelings for them and the early Aphex Twin stuff (Ambient Works I and II) among things like JMJ, White Noise or Curved Air (go listen to the Phantasmagoria album, it has some stunning use of computers and sequencers, probably all EMS, but I don’t remember). And Herbie Hancock has got to be a big influence as well as Weather Report and Yello etc.

  43. I honestly can’t pinpoint it to any one track, album, or artist. For as long as I can remember, I’ve been attracted to “strange” sounds. Whether it comes from watching old Dr. Who or Yellow Submarine broadcasts on my parents’ little 12″ black and white TV on Sunday afternoons, or my “babysitters” playing the radio, or my mom picking up the Switched On Bach record at the thrift store… I honestly don’t know. I’m sure they all had some sort of impact. My mom recently showed me a story I wrote in 1st grade about enjoying music with strange sounds by people like Michael Jackson (I still don’t know how I even knew about him at the time… I had a very sheltered childhood), so it must be something going back at least that far. All I really know is that I love my synths and the things that I can do with them. And that’s really what counts, isn’t it?

  44. The song at the closing credits of John Carpenter’s “Escape From New York.”
    Probably a close second would be The First Terminator movie’s opening track.
    Of course, this is strictly speaking the movie soundtracks that were prevalent during my impressionable youth. And the article spoke to movie soundtracks.
    Don’t get me started on audio releases vs. “changed my life.”
    You have to start a bar tab for that one.

  45. Axel F, the Beverley Hills Cop theme song. Sure, it’s cheesy now, but back then… man. It still is one of the first things I will play on any new synth.

  46. I love and listen to all kinds of electronic and experimental music, but when I heard the Vox Humana patch on Numan’s Cars for the first time, I did a double-take that nearly whipped my head off of my shoulders. One sound and I knew I had to have a synthesizer.

  47. An unknown happy hardcore track at 13 blew my mind, it was just so alien sounding. Richard D James album on acid at 14. Digital hardcore at 15 showed me that I didn’t need expensive gear to make powerful, expressive music and also de-mystified some of the technological workings behind it all.

  48. I love to see here the point of view of the different generations. There’s the point of view of people that has been enjoying electronic music since the 70. So much to learn! I’m happy now to start knowing and enjoying all that music.

    In my case, the album “Decks, EFX & 909” from Richie Hawtin blew my mind and made me saw much farther than I had ever seen. It was totally a game changer for my mind.

  49. It really was Sinfonia To Cantata #29 from Switched on Bach when I was in the first grade. I don’t really remember being all that aware of music and/or music really exciting me in any way until I heard that track. I couldn’t get enough of it and drove my mom nuts asking her to play it over and over again. It’s been electronic music for me ever since then.

  50. Wu-tang Clan – “Bring Da Ruckus”

    yes hiphop is electronic music, samplers are electronic instruments, i used to listen to hardcore punk and this record completely changed my opinion about how hard a song can hit without guitars and shit.

    As the years when on I got more into hiphop, then abstract hiphop, then that opened me up to the whole spectrum of electronic music from Depeche Mode to Venetian Snares to Bitshifter and everything in between.

  51. My older brother bringing home Kraftwerk’s Autobahn home in 1974 (I was 7)… I pretty much decided then and there that I wanted to be musician (tho’ I had been already taking basic piano lessons and singing with the church choir). I already knew a little bit about synthesizers (my sister had Pisces, Aquarius, Capricorn & Jones, Ltd from the Monkees and I think my mom had Switched on Bach) and had been abusing the family reel-to-reel, but Kraftwerk sealed the deal in my little noggin… and nearly 40 years later… well…

  52. Beginning with Nintendo and SNES in the 80s and early 90s, which largely shaped my ears, my ears really turned on when I heard the Nine Inch Nails albums ‘Broken’ and ‘The Downward Spiral’, and the next paradigm shift started shortly after with Aphex Twin’s ‘Richard D. James Album’ in conjunction with early Autechre, which set me off onto the IDM path which led me to another transformative album, Boards of Canada’s ‘Music has the Right to Children’ which had more of an organic, or analog, feeling throughout. By the early 00’s I became entrenched in dance music genres such as Progressive and Psychedelic Trance, where it was no longer a track or an album that would change my life, but rather dancing into a transcendental state facilitated by the outdoor festival environment and DJs seemlessly mixing tracks.

  53. Gary Numan’s pleasure principle had a huge effect on me,
    I was also growing up during the Breakdance era, so tracks like electric Kingdom, Tour de france, White Horse, and rap electronica groups like newcleus got me to love completely electronic musc. Tour de france then got me really into Kraftwerk and Tangerine Dream.
    When I first heard Apotheosis’s O’ Fortuna was when I started wanting to make electronic music myself. I had been playing bass to Metal, rock, Punk, and jazz tracks for awhile, and knew I wanted to blend them somehow.

  54. W.Y.H.I.W.Y.G. by Front 242. My understanding of percussion coalesced the first time I heard this track, and I still think back to it almost every day.

  55. While I can’t say this track “changed my life”, I can say this track along with the movie it was in opened up my mind.

    Orbital – Halcyon On & On

    As I’m sure all you guys & gals know, it was in Hackers (it was also in “Mortal Kombat”.)

  56. “MOOG: The Electric Eclectics of Dick Hyman” was mind-expanding. This 1969 album redefined music for me. (Earlier in the thread, pulsewidth mentioned “The Minotaur,” a great cut from that disk.) It holds up incredibly well after all these years. Must also mention Kraftwerk’s “Autobahn,” “Switched-On Bach” and Tangerine Dream’s soundtrack for “Thief.”

  57. I was back in 09 that I saw Bloody Beetroots and they had just released Warp, I had never heard something like that. It was insane. So, obviously I started learning synths.

    Then I heard Danger and Amon Tobin and I haven’t been the same since.

  58. I remember listening to WJKL (The Fox), a local radio station in Elgin, IL back in ’79/’80.

    Within a one hour time period I heard the following:

    ’30 Frames A Second’ – Simple Minds
    ‘A Blurred Girl’ – John Foxx
    ‘Down In The Park’ – Gary Numan
    ‘Taking Islands in Africa’ – Japan
    A track from Red Noise – Bill Nelson’s first soloesque album
    ‘United’ – Throbbing Gristle

    My musical life took a drastic 180 degree turn after hearing this show.

    I had been previously listening to Synergy, U.K., FM, Genesis.

    I leap frogged over punk. 😉

  59. Growing up in rural, agricultural, small-town U.S., I was at the mercy of top 40 radio, so I won’t mention the standard Human League, Depeche Mode, etc. The synth solo of Heart’s “Magic Man” is one of my early memories. “Saved by Zero” by the Fixx. Anything David Gamson did with Scritti Politti– his multitimbral counterpoint synth arrangements were genius (even if you despise pop, you can learn so much from his tracks).

    When I heard Kurt Kurasaki’s (AKA Peff) “Eyes Inside” in Reason 1.0, that was a defining moment for me. I knew we were entering into a new era. Music not just for the masses, but by the masses.

  60. Well, a difficult decision:
    Arpegiator, from Jean Michel Jarre.
    Cosmos and Blade Runner End Theme, of course from Vangelis.
    Flowers Love, from Joël Fajerman …
    … and some more.

  61. Skinny puppy. By far the greatest electronic music ever. Ever.

    Is it just me or are some of you not buying all the people saying Vangelis and Wendy Carlos and all that sophisticated stuff we are “supposed” to respect? It’s like your film fan buddy that swears his all time fab is 200q1 space oddest or citizen Kane till your like “shut up dude, you watched mall cop 35 times! Don’t lie!” and he laughs and admits it?

    Then again, maybe alot if the guys on here are really that old that Tangerine Dream type stuff is thier early memories if electronics… Idk.

    No offense btw. Im mostly kidding.

    1. Skinny Puppy!!! Sure. It was great. Maybe you are in your mid 30’s? I’m 51 and in fact the best electronica show I saw was Tangerine Dream in the 70’s. Dont forget I was 17. That was the golden age of TD. But now, even if I’m 51, I love the new sound like Autechre, Modeselektor, Röyksopp and so much more. I thing I have follow the flow, the evolution since 40 years and every decade bring their sound, their ambiance.


  62. Wow epic typos. Sorry. I’m tired at work and on a phone…

    Anyway, my comment looks harsh in retrospect. For the record, I know those guys I me ruined ARE legends, and are great. I’m just saying there are certain bands, like Kraftwerk, and in the genre I like the most, it’s Throbbing Gristle, where you usually come upon them later on, as you learn the roots and origins of you favorite groups inspiration, and I think we listen to alot of music that has maybe surpassed those landmarks. Yet we feel obligated to note them, for both reasons of genuine respect, and silly bragging (eyebrows raised, “you mean you’ve never heard TG’s Second Annual Report?” pffsshh!! Amateur! You call yourself a river head?)*

    *no one really busts out the second annual report cd and puts it in rotation hehe.

  63. I was eight when KW’s Trans Europe Express came out. The first time I heard it I also saw the ‘video’, it didn’t change my life, it MADE my life: It largely defined my taste in music and what I make until today

  64. Cock/ver10 by Aphex Twin, slowed to half speed and pitch, then at full speed once accustomed to, made me see all music in a different way

  65. “Touch” by Morton Subotnick. I got into electronic music very early on — Stockhausen’s “Gesang der Jünglinge”, Cage’s “Fontana Mix”, Subotnick’s earlier Nonesuch albums, for instance — but this is a piece I still listen to 40 years later. I think Subotnick was one of the first people to realize that strong rhythms and electronic “bloops and bleeps” are a potent combination. “Touch” has wonderful textures, soundscapes, rhythms, contrasts, structure; it’s really great music like nothing else I’ve heard.

  66. Its like you read my mind! You appear to know a lot approximately this, like you wrote the guide in it or something. I believe that you could do with a few p.c. to pressure the message home a little bit, however other than that, that is excellent blog. A fantastic read. I’ll definitely be back.

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