RIFFING ON CLASSIC TECHNO

Using 808 State’s piece Cubik as a model, students created their own compositions.
Gregory Haggard, director of Thacher’s music program, challenged each student in his Electronic Music Class to write a song based on one musical idea. Their model was a classic techno song, Cubik, by the seminal group 808 State. Students had to come up with a musical motive that could be used by different voices and be independent of chords or chord progression. Use of the motive had to be broken up by contrasting sections consisting of percussion and possibly a secondary motive.

They used two synthesizers--the Subtractor and the Malstrom--within Propellerhead's Reason software along with percussion samples. Haggard writes, “Each one of these pieces is a journey, a little trip through the possibilities of their musical idea as imagined by the composer.” You can hear them all on SoundCloud.
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