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Wednesday, February 9, 2000

Review - Early Modulations: Vintage Volts

Artist: Various artists

Posted on Wed, Feb 9, 2000 at 4:00 AM

It's hard to imagine a time when electronic music was new. Yet it has its humble origins in a time when electricity itself wasn't yet taken for granted. "Early Modulations" looks at electronica's roots to examine its infancy and adolescence. The composers represented are true pioneers -- inventors, explorers and visionaries -- experimenting with the latest techno toys.

The disc captures the rudiments of turntablism, cut-up sampling, tape manipulations, and electronic pulses made with early modular synthesizers and punchcard musical programming that took as much patience as vision to tame. Each composition forces the listener to appreciate both the works' timeless merits and their historical contexts. "Early Mods" is the perfect way to find our electronic ancestors.

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