Music Tech

The historical context of electronic music performance

Electronic music performances all started with the use of the analogue synthesiser. Popular manufacturers of these original analogue synthesisers were Moog, Korg and Roland. Synthesisers such as the ‘Minimoog’ were most popular because they were pre-patched, which meant that someone completely new to synthesisers, would find it easier than having to patch it themselves.

Kraftwerk were the first group to initially use mostly electronic instruments and synthesisers in all of their music and performances. They are known as pioneers in this genre because of their improvisation during live performance, where it makes a greater use of digital and computer-controlled sequencing. They would also make use of self-made instruments, but one such as a light-beam controlled drum kit did not go to plan, hence they abandoned it. The Minimoog was mainly used on their album Autobahn that greatly increased the popularity of electronic music.

The Prodigy made use of one of the Moog synthesizers, the Moog Prodigy, hence the name of the group. The Prodigy are again seen as pioneers of the electronic music genre, making big beat genre more popularised. The group fused various genres together, including rave, hardcore techno, industrial, jungle and breakbeat with punk vocals, utilising their sound. They use a variety of synthesisers and samplers, notably the Moog Prodigy, along with drum machines, turntables, laptops and live percussion and guitars. This mix of electronic and live instruments makes their music unique. In live performance, Liam Howlett would use two Apple MacBook Pros to trigger samples and uses analogue synthesisers to perform other parts of the songs. The Moog Prodigy are known to have been used in the early Prodigy albums, i.e. Experience and Music For The Jilted Generation.  

Yet another pioneering force for music technology in performance is Andy C, an English DJ and producer for Drum and Bass....