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Boomkat Product Review:
'Devil's Music' is Nicholas Collins' seminal performance piece about global media, local culture and individual interference which has been hailed by Phillip Sherburne as "an early template for techno". As he explains, Collins developed the performance "In 1985 out of the confluence of my fascination with early hip hop DJs, a Cagean love of the splendor of radio, the introduction of the first affordable, portable samplers (Electro Harmonix's 16 Second Digital Delay and Super Replay), and a simple home-made "stuttering circuit" (inspired, perhaps by my years as a student of Alvin Lucier)". The performance uses what Collins calls "the world's cheapest, yet most powerful synthesizer" aka the radio, to lift brief segments of AM and FM frequencies in real time, covering music stations, cab drivers, and news bulletins occuring at the time of the perfomance, creating a fractal patchwork of rhythms guided by the actual sequencing of the the stations themselves. The first side of the record is a mindblowing array of diced electro, hip hop and dance taken from NY radio in '85, while a second side largely uses classical and easy listening stations to meld a melange of stray sequences. A second disc is compiled from several concerts across Europe and the USA in 1987, lending a brilliantly unpredictable and alien quality to the results that have just left our heads in tatters. Essential purchase, don't sleep!!!