Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Modulations - Cinema for the Ear (1998)

Director: Iara Lee
Writer: Peter Shapiro

"We are not entertainers, we are sound scientists."
- Kraftwerk

Modulations is a feature-length documentary produced by George Gund and directed by Iara Lee which captures a moment in history where humans and machines are fusing to create today's most exciting sounds.

It traces the evolution of electronic music as one of the most profound artistic developments of the 20th century. By cutting back and forth between avant garde composers, Kraftwerk's innovative synthesizer drones, Giorgio Moroder's glacial Euro-disco, Afrika Bambaataa's electro-funk and Prodigy's current worldwide superstarstardom, Modulations celebrates, replicates and illuminates the nomadic drift of the post-human techno sound.

The film examines the kids who have turned the turntable into a musical instrument, disillusioned disco lovers who created acid house out of primitive synthesizers, Motor City mavericks who saw the drum machine as their escape route out of urban neglect, and a generation of British youth who transformed these blips and bleeps into dance floor anthems of their own alienation.

Modulations provides a sense of history and context in which today's electronic music can be understood. It entertains the converted and remixes the mindset of electronica's nay-sayers.

Featuring a stunning collage of interviews, cutting-edge visuals, in-studio footage and live performances, Modulations moves at a pace that matches the energy and innovation of the music.

Produced by George Gund
Directed by Iara Lee
Directors of photography: Marcus Burnett & Paul Yates
Consultant writer: Peter Shapiro
Editor: Paula Heredia
Sound montage: Mark Jan Wlodarkiewicz
Production sound mixer: Antonio Arroyo
Production managers: David Read & J.D. Frantz
Post production supervisor: Zachary Mortensen
Post production producer: Katharine Mcquerry
Production coordinators: Mark Lukowitsky & Margarita Ochoa
Music supervisor: Alma Melendez
Music research consultants: Peter Shapiro, Dietrich Schoenemann & Doron Gura

Afrika Bambaataa, Alec Empire, Alvin Toffler, Arman Van Helden, Arthur Baker, Autechre, Bill Laswell, Bundy Brown, Calvin Bush, Carl Cox, Carl Craig, Christian Marclay, Danny Tenaglia, Darren Emerson, David Kristian, David Toop, DB, Derrick Carter, Derrick May, DJ Atrak, DJ Funk, DJ Sneak, DJ Spooky, Doc Scott, DXT, Ed Rush, Eddie Fowlkes, Frankie Bones, Fumiya Tanaker, Future Sound Of London, Genesis P-Orridge, Giorgio Moroder, Hardfloor, Holger Czukay, Irmin Schmidt, Jesse Saunders, Joey Beltram, Jonah Sharp, Juan Atkins, Karlheinz Stockhausen, Ken Ishii, Kevin Saunderson, Kid Koala, Kodwo Eshun, Lee Ronaldo, Ltj Bukem, Marshall Jefferson, Matt Black, Meat Beat Manifesto, Mike Dearborn, Mixmaster Morris, Moby, Money Mark, Oyuki Conjugate, Orbital, Oval, Panacea, Paul Johnson, Photek, Pierry Hnry, Prodigy, Prototype 909, Rob Playlord, Robert Moog, Robert Pepperell, Roni Size, Sasha, Scanner, Sensorband, Simon Reynolds, Squarepusher, Stacey Pullen, Surgeon, Talvin Singh, Teo Macero, Terre Thaemlitz, Tetsu Inoue, The Invisible Skratch Piklz, Todd Roberts, Westbam & X-Ecutioners.

Billboard Conference (Chicago, US), CMJ (New York, US), Essential Music (Brighton), Lollapalooza (US), Love Parade (Berlin, Germany), Popkomm (Cologne), Rainbow Serpent 2000 (Mount Fuji, Japan), Siggvaph (Los Angeles, US), Sonar (Barcelona, Spain), Wintermusic Conference (Miami, US).