Monday, June 22, 2009

The Primitive Voice of Techno

I became involved in a discussion yesterday at the Modplug message board. The board is dedicated to users of a specific type of musical production programs; called trackers, which I have been using for several years as my main tool to produce music.

The author of the tread mentioned a new book by Russian author Martynov, who explores the theme of repetition in music. Using techno as a reference I think I can see an underlying relationship between tribal music of different continents and the very modern incarnations of dance music. Although the differences are obvious: the cultural, instrumental, and melodic differences are sometimes vast. Some things to me seems very much alike though. There are the repetitive phrases, the mesmerizing focus on rhythm and movement, and the idea of music as a potential vehicle for ecstatic experiences.

The artist Ame with the minimal techno track Rej, originally released 2005 on Sonar Kollektiv.

The achievement of different states of consciousness when dancing to repetitive music is still very much witnessed all over the world. I have written before about how night-clubbers and spiritual dancers relate before, inspired by the portrayal of Muslim Sufi's in the french documentary Blues de l'orient.

I believe that the techno producer who lets a kick drum build the foundation of an entire track are building upon an ancient practice, which probably would pay close resemblance to the original spirit of music as it was in the dawn of humanity. I also think that some of the appeal of modern dance music is that it speaks with a voice that attracts us in on very fundamental level.


Sarah said...

Hmmmmm interesting. I haveread about this often, meditiation while dancing. I do walking meditiations - so why not!! I danced for about 14 years when I was younger and will have to say - it is still a source of bliss for me and cn see how tribal type beats would encourage that. My husband spent several years in Germany and we have lots of German Techno...uhmmmm not so much my style, but I do find other techno to affect me this way. Facinating hon!! Great post. Hope things are well with you!!
Blessings, Sarah

julochka said...

i love the notion that such very modern music is building on something ancient. and there is something fundamentally appealing about an underlying drum beat that underlies a piece of music, isn't there?

F. Monique Pitre said...

I appreciate this blog, because I have a huge love for music and dance, and do find myself entranced by the "kick drum" wherever I am.

sallymandy said...

Fascinating! Thank you. I do remember that altered state of consciousness that would happen when I was younger and a "clubber." I have always loved dancing, and that's probably why.

Have always loved reggae and other styles with distinctive, repetitive beats.