As we travel through the technological epochs of the twenty-first century, musicians are curiously adapting the applied sciences to suit the needs of contemporary electronic music. As musicians in the twenty-first century are exposed to portentous computing power, the genre is always changing and mutating technology into somewhat antithetic applications. The technological advances we are making in various fields are being taken up by creative individuals to make music that is often unconventional, but progressive.
In the twentieth century, we saw a rapid spurt of technological advances in the applied sciences. It was at the dawn of this era that we first saw Count Ferdinand Von Zeppelin take to the sky, and in a science lab somewhere in the world, the first radio was receiving messages through the aether. Over a period of only one hundred years we now fly through the air at thousands of kilometres per hour and almost every home on the planet has an old analogue radio receiver. So how has twenty-first century technology developed over the last decade and what does that mean for composers of modern, contemporary music?
As technological advances have progressed, so have the manners in which we produce sound and music. Throughout the twentieth century, we leaped through rapid accelerations in science, creating new musical instruments from this technology. The birth of electronic music took place, and electronic musical instruments took form from the output of engineering science labs. Engineering experts became composers and composers became sound scientists. Another fascinating change occurred as technology became musical. This was that “noise” became art and electro-acoustics became entwined with the musical genre of old. It has been convincingly argued in literature how music technology has managed to shift human mental and physical orientations, encouraging the evolution of the industrious culture we live in today…
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- G. W. Young, (2012) “Twenty-first Century Music Technology,” in Digital Arts & Humanities: Scholarly Reflections, J. C. O’Sullivan Ed. [Online]:iBook and .pdf