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"OHM" is an ambitious 3 CD compilation that collects tracks from 42 electronic music artists between the years 1937 and 1982.
  Its purpose is to serve as anintroductory primer to the history of electronic music, a singleresource that brings together work from most every field, location,technology and period. Included are many of the names you would expect:John Cage, Edgard Varèse, Karlheinz Stockhausen, Raymond Scott, SteveReich, Terry Riley, Holger Czukay, La Monte Young, Klaus Schulze andBrian Eno. Better yet are all the remaining names you and I may notknow. The variation and history is almost overwhelming as the music iscreated for a variety of reasons and through a variety of means.Traditional composition is achieved via new methods and all new ideasand fields are created through the avant-garde of experimentation. Themachines include theremin, tape recorders, oscillators, primitivecomputers and synthesizers and numerous other inventions. Their mastersuse them to speak many different languages: cut-ups and collage, drone,soundtrack, noise, speech synthesis, ambient and other indescribablegenres. It really is amazing how human and contemporary much of thismusic still sounds today ... you would have a difficult time discerningmuch of today's minimalist and experimental artists from their decadesold predecessors. After one listen of the entire set, two things becomeglaringly apparent: 1) nearly all music of the past few decades owes anenormous debt to this pioneering work 2) the possibilities arefascinating and endless. Purists may complain of omissions (usually dueto legal reasons) and that 15 of the tracks are edits, but the 3 discsare filled at nearly 74 minutes apiece, are in rough chronologicalorder and definitely serve as an introduction. The 96 page booklet isincredible with 18 b/w pictures of artists and instruments, briefessays by Brian Eno, Robert Moog, Paul D. Miller aka DJ Spooky,Thurston Moore, Peter Namlock, David Toop and Bill Laswell, andcomments on every single track, many by the artists themselves. Veryambitious indeed but Ellipsis Arts and producers Thomas Ziegler andJason Gross have succeeded. And at a price of $30 - $35, this is asteal. "OHM" is without a doubt essential for anyone who considersthemselves a fan of electronic music ... past, present or future ...