The New Sound Of Music – A View Of Electronic Music From 1979

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The New Sound of Music is a vintage BBC documentary (1979) that looks at the development of recorded music, from the first barrel organs, pianolas, the phonograph, the magnetic tape recorder on to the concepts of musique concrete and electronic music.

The New Sound Of Music II

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The New Sound Of Music III

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The New Sound Of Music IV

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EMS Synthesizers and equipment are a heavily featured technology resource in this film, with the show’s host, Michael Rodd, demonstrating the EMS VCS3 synthesizer and it’s waveform output. Other EMS products include the incredible Synthi 100 modular console system, the EMS AKS, the Poly Synthi and the EMS Vocoder. Most of the location shots are filmed within the BBC’s Radiophonic Workshop studios as they were in 1979.

Malcolm Clarke demonstrates the Synthi 100, also known as the “Delaware”, Michael Rodd demonstrates musique concrete by tape splicing and manipulation and Paddy Kingsland demonstrates tape recorder delay techniques (also known as “Frippertronics”). The Yamaha CS-80 analogue synthesizer is demonstrated by both Peter Howell and Roger Limb. The EMS Vocoder is also expertly put to use by Peter Howell on his classic “Greenwich Chorus” for the television series “The Body in Question”.

Dick Mills works on sound effects for Doctor Who using a VCS3 unit, and Elizabeth Parker uses bubble sounds to create music for an academic film on particle physics. Peter Zinovieff is featured using his computer music studio and DEC PDP8 computer to produce electronic variations on classic vintage scores.

David Vorhaus is featured using his invention, the MANIAC (Multiphasic ANalog Inter-Active Chromataphonic (sequencer)), and playing his other invention, the Kaleidophon — which uses lengths of magnetic tape as velocity-sensitive ribbon controllers.

via JeffreyPlaide


4 thoughts on “The New Sound Of Music – A View Of Electronic Music From 1979

  1. That was pretty phenomenal, I watched the whole thing. I loved the part with Robin Wood playing the polysynthi

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  2. Fun documentary! Looks like that would have been an interesting time to be involved in electronic music – if you were lucky enough to have access to this stuff.

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