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OUT OF PRINT mindblowing 3CD collection of pioneer electronic amp; AG works + 96 page book. Feat John Cage, Brian Eno, Klaus Schulze, Jon Hassell, Terry Riley, La Monte Young, Stockhausen, Louis And Bebe Barron and more.
Opening with Clara Rockmore's reworking of Tchaikovsky with the theremin, and finishing with one of Brian Eno's ambient soundscapes, OHM artfully succeeds in its goal of giving a representative (as opposed to the impossible, comprehensive) overview of the first several decades of electronic music. Over 3 discs, 42 compositions, and 96 pages of notes and photos, OHM clearly illustrates the producers' and contributing writers' point that early electronic music is much of the foundation of contemporary music. Herein lies the connective tissue bridging musique concrète, 20th-century classical, electronic experimentation, and the theoretical avant-garde to psychedelia, ambient, dub, techno, electro, and synthpop and the globalization of sound. The groundbreaking uses of loops, sampling, drones, remixes, and cut-and-paste technology are put fully into context. The diversity of music included makes any sort of summation impossible, but that is also the point: electronic music is not really a genre, but an open field of endless possibility. From John Cage's famous "William's Mix" of tape snippets to Karkheinz Stockhausen's electronic orchestral compositions, from David Tudor and Holger Czukay's experiments in unrelated blendings of audio elements to David Behrman's supremely peaceful duet between computers and musicians, the aural renegades on OHM tread where none (save a few of their contemporaries) had gone before. The liner notes convey the incredible amount of hard work and experimentation it took to stitch together many of these pieces in the predigital era. Putting aside the inevitable quibbles about what's missing (much of it due to legal and/or logistical issues), a more complete collection of musical eggheads, eccentrics, and visionaries is hard to imagine. "i"--Carl Hanni