Monday, September 5, 2016

I Dream of Wires (2014)

I don't usually review documentaries. If I remember correctly this is fifth documentary I review. If you don't count Pantani documentary all have been somewhat related to movies or cinematography. Before anyone says anything Pumping Iron was about Arnold and he is big movie star. This one is related to music you hear on movies. If you watch videos of composers talking about movie scores in their studios you will see modular synths quite often. Those walls of knobs, dials, plugs and wires may look like parts of science fiction sets but they are modular synths.

I heard about this documentary during Indiegogo crowd funding campaign. I was about to give my money but didn't give. Bigger backers got extended version with more interviews and so on. I was into synths back then but not so much into modular synths. Now when I am considering starting building modular synth I watched the documentary.

Documentary is made for general audience who doesn't know anything about the topic. It starts from the beginning of electronic music. Getting into Moog and Buchla. It explains differences of east coast and west coast philosophies and why Moog's east coast philosophy was victorious. When synths got more accessible, big and expensive modular synths got out of fashion to be revived when people got bored with digital synths and with introduction of Eurorack format.

Documentary interviews many key persons and famous modular users. Trent Reznor has been my gateway to electronic music. For some reason he sound grumpy old man whose cookies were stolen by Japanese synth companies with their workstations and preset machines. I have seen him being more positive in other videos where he talks about synths. Vince Clarke stood out of all the interviews. I could have listened much more of him. Someone should make documentary where Trent, Vince, Hans Zimmer and few others just talk about their gear and how they use it.

I Dream of Wires didn't leave me wanting more or wanting to watch it again. It was good introduction into the topic but nothing more. I don't know if extra material went deeper into modular world. I wish there was sequel or something which talked about modular systems, how people build them and why they pick the modules they have.

No comments:

Post a Comment