Alexcremers

The Amazing Electronic Music Thread

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Fans of electronic music, this is the thread you have been waiting for! We can discuss the music, composers, musicians, equipment, synthesizers, samples (orchestral and electronic), ... you name it! Who and what are your favorites? Why do you like it? Why don't you like it? A certain sound in a pop song? This is the place to ask or to share.

Even if there was a precursor to this thread, this new one overwrites the old one.

Okay, I'll start the thread with a very strange and beautiful album: Sonanza (1975) by Roberto Cacciapaglia. It's strange because it's a hybrid of orchestral and electronic. The combination of the dark and the romantic has affected me deeply when I was a youngster.

Looking forward to your contributions!

Alex

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I've always wondered. What was the first really influential electronic (pop) album. Was it Tubular Bells? Or were there albums that caught the imagination of other artists before that one?

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I've always wondered. What was the first really influential electronic (pop) album. Was it Tubular Bells? Or were there albums that caught the imagination of other artists before that one?

The band or artists that had the biggest influence on popular music is Kraftwerk. The first Kraftwerk album dates from 1970.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kjSXWgXPeEM

Of course, they really broke through with this track:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=e11h73WhqK4

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I'll admit I probably wouldn't be in there. ;)

As far as electronic stuff that I dig, let's see... Tangerine Dream, Brian Eno, Vangelis, Mike Oldfield. I'd also call Pink Floyd electronic, and Daft Punk is doing interesting things these days.

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Not a fan of The Songs of Distant Earth then either, eh?

Maybe he's an acquired taste... acquired by spending four years falling asleep listening to him after a bit of a smoke.

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Not a fan of The Songs of Distant Earth then either, eh?

It's more tolerable than Tubular Bells that's for sure, but when it comes to ambient electronica I prefer some Boards of Canada, Global Communications or Air.

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What do we define as electronic? Anything that's not a live instrument?

Music mainly produced with synthesizers and computers. For instance, Mike Oldfield's Tubular Bells is not really an electronic music album. There's almost no synth and certainly no computer used.

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Why is that? Ain't this charming?

I think it's very charming but I always had a soft spot for Mike's first three albums or music with a strong sense of melancholy. It's almost like Minimal Music but done in a Folk and Pop way. I really can't stand what he did in the '80s or later.

What do we define as electronic? Anything that's not a live instrument?

Cliff Martinez's Drive

Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross' The Social Network

Daft Punk's Tron Legacy

M83's Oblivion

I should check out Drive. I remember the music to be a throwback to the '80s but in a fresh way. I like his Solaris.

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I'm a huge electronica buff. In fact, I would have never have become interested in soundtracks if it weren't for certain electronic instrumental music that I listened to from the mid 80s and beyond.

My interest runs a wide scale -- from the pioneers of the 70s like Kraftwerk, Vangelis, Jean Michel Jarre, Tangerine Dream and so on (heck, even some early art music by the likes of Stockhausen) to 80s electropop (Moroder, Faltermeyer, Hammer etc.) to various 90s subgenres, in particular psytrance and goa (Juno Reactor, Astral Projection, Shpongle, Infected Mushroom) and bigger, more industrial acts like Underworld or Prodigy or super-DJs like Paul Oakenfold, Paul van Dyk, Max Graham etc.. Believe it or not, but I was a raver in the 90s.

I also LOVE it when these electronica artists do film music. Some examples have been mentioned already, like Cliff Martinez, Clint Mansell, M83, The Chemical Brothers, The Dust Brothers, Underworld, Paul Oakenfold, Orbital and so forth.

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I'm never good at remembering 'firsts' this or that, but I'm fairly confident it was Jean Michel Jarre. I became an enthusiast of his in the late 80s, copying CDs to cassette where I could find them, eventually also buying my own CDs once I got a player.

Which album of his? Difficult. I think it was his two live albums that I copied to cassette -- "Jarre Live" (today known as "Destination Docklands") and "In Concert Houston-Lyon". One CD on each side of the cassette that I eventually wore out. CD-wise It may have been the compilation "Musik aus Zeit und Raum" (which I no longer own, unfortunately) and the "Concerts in China" 2CD.

I eventually became a Jarre completist and have seen him live 5 times.

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I remember when Oxygene Part 4 hit the charts in '77. I digged it! Especially loved that drum machine! But I never became a fan of Jean Michel Jarre.

OXYGENE is great, EQUINOXE is even better (and probably my alltime favourite album of his).

One of the things I love about him -- beyond the influential 'sounds' and pioneering use of technology -- is that he's so versatile. I mean, on the one hand you have this crazy, aleatoric music he did for stuff like the Pompidou center in Paris in the late 60s and early 70s. And then there's the happy-go-lucky, very "French" pop melodies of the 80s and then there's the more contemporary beat- or ambient-oriented stuff. And even great orchestral music.

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Listening to Eno's Music for Airports this afternoon.

Can't recall exactly what my first experience with electronic music was. Suspect it was Vangelis' material used in Cosmos.

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Eno is great -- especially when I need some counter-medicine for hardhitting electronica (which I also love). He's rather unique, but there are some other great artists in the ambient genre too, like Shamen (a long lost love of the 90s). I remember when the Manchester beat was all the rage. :)

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Yeah, I know, Mr. Shark. But I was more curious as to whether you liked it or disliked it?

Personally, I'd rather take this Shamen over the chart material:

In other words, when they venture closer to Future Sound of London territory.

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I've always wondered. What was the first really influential electronic (pop) album. Was it Tubular Bells? Or were there albums that caught the imagination of other artists before that one?

Tubular Bells has plenty of guitars and other instruments. It's more relevant as a multi track album performed and recorded by (nearly) a single person than for synths. And also for being the inaugural release of the Virgin label.

Not a fan of The Songs of Distant Earth then either, eh?

Nice one! I also like all three Tubular Bells - refreshingly different takes on the same concept.

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Yeah I like a lot of Martinez' work.

Martinez also did Only God Forgives, didn't he? It must be wonderful for anyone to be the house composer of Nicolas Refn, one of the few directors where experimentation and the 'out-there' are encouraged. Their collaboration is quite reminiscent of David Lynch and Angelo Badalamenti.

Alex

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Kraftwerk are indeed the gods of electronic music, I found out about them in the late '70s and immediately connected with their sound (while loving something as different from it as Star Wars and Superman).

"Jarre Live" (today known as "Destination Docklands") and "In Concert Houston-Lyon". One CD on each side of the cassette that I eventually wore out.

Those are wonderful albums, although my favorite live shows are "Paris La Défense" and the "Europe in Concert" Barcelona performance at our Olympic Stadium (which I attended in 1993). Sadly he went downhill ever since.

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I've always wondered. What was the first really influential electronic (pop) album. Was it Tubular Bells? Or were there albums that caught the imagination of other artists before that one?

Tubular Bells has plenty of guitars and other instruments. It's more relevant as a multi track album performed and recorded by (nearly) a single person than for synths. And also for being the inaugural release of the Virgin label.

Not a fan of The Songs of Distant Earth then either, eh?

Nice one! I also like all three Tubular Bells - refreshingly different takes on the same concept.

I actually haven't heard any but the original. But I remember being entranced by the idea of an album inspired by a Clarke novel. Distant Earth is one of the most relaxing things I can listen to.

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This is a great thread:

Oldfield, Kraftwerk, Jean Michel Jarre, Tomita, Tangerine Dream, Rick Wakeman, Tony Banks, Anthony Phillips ("1984" is fab!), The Orb, Orbital, 808 State, The Shamen, and, the daddy of them all...Larry Fast. Heck, even Ganymeade is not bad.

"The list goes ever on, and on,

Down from the post where it began".

Alex: forget about "Drive", and get into "Solaris", and "Traffic"!

Thor: forget about "Equinoxe", and get a load of "Zoolook", Jarre's magnum opus!!!!!!

Actually, is Mike Oldfield "electronic"? "Incantations", anyone?

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Do you mean "Music Of The Spheres"? Naff!

It had "Classic FM" written all over it, and not in a good way...

The Oldfield equivalent of Susan Boyle: safe, and vacuous, and it doesn't mean a damn thing

His last truly great record was "Amarok", and that was almost 24 years ago.

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Actually, is Mike Oldfield "electronic"? "Incantations", anyone?

Have you read the entire thread, Richard? In fact, there's less synth in Tubular Bells than in Incantations.

I have Solaris but it isn't electronic, right (strings and steel drums)?

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Do you mean "Music Of The Spheres"? Naff!

It had "Classic FM" written all over it, and not in a good way...

The Oldfield equivalent of Susan Boyle: safe, and vacuous, and it doesn't mean a damn thing

His last truly great record was "Amarok", and that was almost 24 years ago.

Lol, bit more frank than I wanted to be but yes.

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Thor: forget about "Equinoxe", and get a load of "Zoolook", Jarre's magnum opus!!!!!!

Agreed! bowdown

Yeah, it's a great album, but I prefer Jarre without the vocal samples, to be honest (in this case Laurie Anderson).

I disagree with Ricard in that it's been downhill ever since. Several great things in the 90s (I have a particular personal and close connection to this period -- including the Pet Shop Boys-like CHRONOLOGIE) and especially in the 2000s. Like the rather experimental GEOMETRY IN LOVE and SESSIONS 2000. And the highy underrated METAMORPHOSES.

Apparently, Jarre is looking into the possibility to do film scores now (he's only done one proper soundtrack before, and that was in the 70s). Can't wait!

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Oldfield isn't exactly a pure electronic composer -- more of an 'art/prog rock' composer, maybe (also sharing elements with some of my favourite acts like 10CC, Supertramp, Alan Parsons Project, Pink Floyd, Rick Wakeman etc.) -- but it's definitely a crucial part of his sound.

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That's the point though. Any composer who plays the lead guitar himself in his concerts and features a dozen different guitars throughout a single work isn't really a "synth composer". Rather a guitarist/guitar composer with (frequently) a heavy use of synths.

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