The 80s are back. No, they never left. And if there’s something that these years have left and that I can’t do without, they are the sounds of the golden years of sound synthesis. Sounds made using analog synths, but also FM synths, in later times. We all know Stranger Things, the famous Netflix series, and we can have any kind of opinion (does it bother Stephen King’s IT too much? Too many thefts or too many tributes?), But the soundtrack puts everyone in agreement.
The sublime job
However you see it, Michael Stein and Kyle Dixon of the electronic band Survive, have done a sublime job. They thus paid homage to all those composers who in those years accompanied the best of a certain type of film production. We talk about people like Jean-Michel Jarre, Tangerine Dream, Vangelis, Goblin, John Carpenter, Giorgio Moroder, and Fabio Frizzi. I’m a fan of Italian director Lucio Fulci and his “vintage” horror films. And yes, I have to admit, mainly for the soundtracks.
In my recording studio (the Lipstick Studio) I had to make a series of choices mainly related to the sound I wanted to get with my songs. That’s why among all of them, at the end I often find myself using the Mother-32, a semi-modular analog synthezizer from the renowned Moog brand. It is no coincidence that, in fact, the Moog sound can be found in virtually any film production in the Eighties.
No arpeggiator? No Eighties!
One of the ways in which these analog sounds were exploited is to use an arpeggiator module (often integrated with the synth itself), capable of arpeggios of musical phrases at different speeds. Look up the Stranger Things title sequence and you will understand what I am talking about. Indispensable.
The typical “warm” of the sounds produced by these synthesizers never seem to die and have the advantage of not tiring the listener, projecting it immediately into a certain dimension. If you haven’t already done so, also listen to the Tron: Legacy soundtrack by Daft Punk, it should take away any doubts and it could be an example of how to use the synths!
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If you are curious to hear how much an analog synth can do, you must know that you can listen to the Moog Mother-32 on many of my tracks, such as “Flashback” and “Let me sleep” (watch the video).