Just stumbled on this amazing video of Georgio Moroder playing with a vocoder. So thought I’d do a little tribute.
“I Feel Love”, that he co-wrote with Donna Summer, is his most famous. And was as important at Kraftwerk in building the foundations for house, techno and synthpop.
As some so elegantly put it on You Tube: “Kraftwerk and Tangerine Dream were pioneers but it is Giorgio who put the FUNK in electro. Do the kids of today know what debt that is owed to this man.”
Said David Bowie of I Feel Love: “One day in Berlin … [Brian] Eno came running in and said, ‘I have heard the sound of the future.’ … he puts on ‘I Feel Love’, by Donna Summer … He said, ‘This is it, look no further. This single is going to change the sound of club music for the next fifteen years.’ ”
Here’s a great video for one of my fave Moroder tracks – From Here To Eternity. Classic.
Moroder also is an essential part of late 70s and 80s culture, bringing disco and synthpop, synthesizers and computers, and a whole lot of funk to the masses writing and producing a wide range of classic pop songs and working on soundtracks for some of the biggest movies of the decade: Midnight Express, Scarface, Top Gun, Flashdance, Never Ending Story, American Gigolo, to name a few.
Here’s Fly Too High, co-written with Janis Ian.
He worked with Sique Sique Sputnik on their first album, which I’ve always thought was under-rated. “Ah, that was quite an, er, adventure. We had a lot of fun – God, crazy guys, ” he said of the band, in a 1996 interview with Future Music.
Here’s Sique Sique Sputnik, Atari Baby:
Moroder also produced Sparks:
And Blondie, Call Me:
And as a special bonus here’s Moroder with Phil Oakley in Together In Electric Dreams. But check out around 1:02, there appears to be a sound reactive computer animation. And some others later on.
Don’t really love this tune, but like the 8 bit sound reactive stuff:
Finally, I bet you didn’t know that Giorgio Moroder also produced a sports car with automotive engineer Claudio Zampolli – the Cizeta-Moroder V16T. Checkit:
I’ve decided to start release some of the stuff I’ve been working on lately, building up towards my show. I have so many experiments sitting on my hard drive that never see the light of day.
So here we have Sound Reactive Circle 1.
I wanted it to be able to play in the browser, but for some reason couldn’t get it to work, event though I signed the applet. Next time….
These screengrabs are part of a vast pool of sound reactive stuff I’ve been working on over the past year, which is finally getting into a presentable form.
After a long haitus, I completely rebuild the old award winning RBVJ in Processing – but it wasn’t as simple as I anticipated, and it’s still not 100% stable. Once it is I will release the code.
I’m not a programmer, I’m a designer/artist, whatever. However I do enjoy quite a few aspects of programatic design – the fact that code can lead you to unexpected places and taking on a life of it’s own can really surprise you.
I am really most inspired by the visuals of Raster Norton and Ali Demirel, which are pretty close to my own work in both style and substance. I’ve also been thinking plenty about space and I think, along with minimalism, these theme play out a lot in my work. I think the graphics also reflect the way my music production is moving.
I have always believed that club graphics should simple – there is too much noise in the world already – and the simplicity of the graphics allows us to go with the music and find meaning on our own, rather than being shoved down a visual mishmash. Not that these kind of graphics should necessarily be just shown in a club context, but that’s another whole conversation.
The plan is to combine the visuals with my live music/DJ sets – eventually controlling both light and sound through Ableton/OSC/Max.
Soon on a wall/dancefloor in Berlin. And beyond.
Gallery: Here’s the first of a three part set of screengrabs from my work:
Video: (Coming Soon – next week hopefully)
Some technical stuff:
Norman McLaren, was a genius animator and film maker best known for his groundbreaking and minimalist work for the National Film Board of Canada in the 1940s, 50s and 60s. One of the most important names in the history of animation McLaren was a also the godfather of music visualization. He won an Oscar in 1953 for his bizarre short film Neighbours. But here we pay homage to some of his more abstract work, most made without the use of a camera.
Norman McLaren Dots (1940):
Norman McLaren – Boogie Doodle:
Norman McLaren Le Merle (The Blackbird):
And finally, here’s a cool film about McLaren’s working method of drawing sound and played on the Moviola, with the great title of Pen Point Percussion:
Check out Shun Kawakami’s other great stuff on his personal site: www.shunkawakami.jp.
Kawakami’s work if very much based in electronic music. And reminds me to an extend of another artist I really admire and have been meaning to post for a while – Carsten Nicolai who is exploring similar themes to myself in his artwork – light, sound and minalism.
Nicolai is well known in Germany for his sound and light specific installations, and his giant dream machine – called Rota, which has recently been turned into an iPhone App. Nicolai is also part of the pioneering record labelRaster Noton. I was recently lucky enough to attend their label showcase night at the WMF in Berlin to witness the future sound of music – a hybrid of dancefloor friendly electro and electronica that made the room and your body vibrate.
Here is Aoyama Spaces, spaces illuminated through a play of sound and light:
Here’s some of their projects:
Tone ladder – A ladder equipped with sensors becomes a musical instrument:
Polygon playground – a large scale interactive lounge object featuring a software aided 3D surface projection system covering the object with a seamless 360 degree projection mapping, with motion and proximity sensing:
Dug up this old sketch I did – the Peter Saville Tribute, and added sound reactiveness.
Press ‘s’ to turn on sound reactive response.
Use up and down arrow keys to increase or decrease the grid.
Drag with mouse to change perspective.