Interpreting the Synthesizer: Meaning Through Sonics
This volume examines the synthesizer’s significance for music and culture, with a range of contributors providing historical, musicological, practical and theoretical perspectives.
The synthesizer as an instrument has evolved rapidly over the last 50 years, conveying different meanings in musical culture at various times in its history. For example, post-punk and new wave acts used synths to signify their embrace of futurism and modernity. Earlier psychedelic bands used the instrument to sonically represent mind expansion while prog acts signposted their lineage to the classical avant-garde. Techno artists used synths to escape the strictures of acoustic music in parallel with rave culture’s desire for escapism from the mundanity of daily existence. It is now seemingly ubiquitous in modern pop music production.
Nick Wilson has been working in the field of electronic music and sound art for the last 25 years. He is the Label Manager for Australian electronic arts collective Clan Analogue, producing several acclaimed compilation albums, including the recently released Coordinate: Beyond the Algorithm, and managing the Gear Shift series of electronic music jam sessions. As well as playing in several electronic music ensembles, his sound art works have been regularly presented at the Next Wave and Melbourne Fringe festivals. He has also worked as a community artist for the Yarraville Community Centre and Mornington Peninsula Regional Council. He has composed music for local contemporary music ensembles and been a Nillumbik Council artist-in-residence. Currently, he lectures in electronic music production at SAE Institute, Melbourne.
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