How a recording-studio mishap shaped '80s music


cloud_download D O W N L O A D file_download


Loading Related Content...

Published: 1 year ago
Warning: This is an unapologetic ode to gated reverb drums

Here's a Spotify playlist of some of the best gated reverb songs: http://spoti.fi/2vH7ZZL

Over the past few years a general nostalgia for the 1980s has infiltrated music, film, and television. I deeply love those gated reverb drums of the '80s - you know that punchy percussive sound popularized by Phil Collins and Prince? So for my second episode of Vox Pop’s Earworm I spoke with two Berklee College of Music professors, Susan Rogers and Prince Charles Alexander, to figure out just how that sound came to be, what makes it so damn punchy, and why it’s back. 

Correction: At 2:01, a previous version of the video mistakenly said the noise gate only lets frequencies above a certain threshold pass through. We should’ve said “amplitudes” instead of “frequencies.” The error has been rectified.

At 3:45 we noted that plate reverb boxes were made using aluminum. In fact, they were usually made of steel.

Further reading: http://www.musicradar.com/news/drums/classic-drum-sounds-in-the-air-tonight-590970

Subscribe to our channel! http://goo.gl/0bsAjO

Vox.com is a news website that helps you cut through the noise and understand what's really driving the events in the headlines. Check out http://www.vox.com to get up to speed on everything from Kurdistan to the Kim Kardashian app.

Check out our full video catalog: http://goo.gl/IZONyE
Follow Vox on Twitter: http://goo.gl/XFrZ5H
Or on Facebook: http://goo.gl/U2g06o


add_comment Add New Comment

comment  Comments

Here's a Spotify playlist full of gated reverb heavy songs from the 80s and today! Let me know which songs you think I should include and I'll pick a few to add: https://open.spotify.com/user/estellecaswell/playlist/5zh0IzdP530nxTKRmarv5q

1 year ago

i was just in the beginning of making a playlist for gated reverb omg thxxx

2 days ago

> Awesome! Commenting so I can check later.
Is there some way to subscribe to a particular comment? If you reply to a certain comment, you get notification when a reply to the same comment is made. But what if you don't have anything particular to say, but think it is a useful comment ("HARK! A useful comment on YouTube!") that you want to pay attention to?

(Yes, I suppose I'm still stuck back in the early-to-mid-90s when "social media" consisted of the Usenet, and have the idea that "commenting" could actually lead to something useful - you know, personal learning, evolution of ideas, etc..)

2 weeks ago

I would add: Piano In The Dark by Brenda Russell.

1 month ago

oh so this is to blame for the shitty timbre of the 80's drum music. please just let the 80's die.......jazz is king resistance is futile.

1 month ago

Serendipitous happy accedent

12 hours ago

Shut up before I pull your cassette tape out

17 hours ago

I found your video by accident. And I'm so glad I did. I'm an 80's child

21 hours ago

See 80s and music and clicks

3 days ago

It just sounds like drums to me.

5 days ago

Trying to focus on the technology as applied... which is very interesting - but the song samples are giving me high school angst flashbacks. ;)

5 days ago

You know, I've been listening to YAz since inception, and it never occured to me that the "DRUM" sound was an actual drum, but altered. I just thought it was a keyboard effect, since , you know,... VInce Clark..

1 week ago

Not a single word bout Joy Division's 'Unknown Pleasures"????

1 week ago

my mind is blown

1 week ago

Well done.

1 week ago

Bssh

1 week ago

Then: The musicians created it and directed its use. Now: The "artists" are clueless as the engineers drive the boat.

1 week ago

Hughs last name is pronounced PADJUM.

1 week ago

Wow what a great production. Just another reason to pay for YouTube! It’s so much better than HBO!

1 week ago

Peter Gabriel Intruder *finds gated reverb and grunts like a caveman around fire.

2 weeks ago

No mention of David Bowie's Let's Dance?

2 weeks ago

I have to agree with the producer who admitted they did it to death in the 80s. It got really really boring. Ok, a little bit is ok for nostalgia, but not too much, thanks.

2 weeks ago

Compressors don't amplify quiet noises ya dingus

2 weeks ago

The 1980s was the holocaust of music and it never recovered. MTV came along in 1981 and the business of music was changed from quality being used to sell music to image being used to sell and quality went right out the window and it's never been the same. It's why you have all these karaoke performers today, it's all image that is used to sell while the actual music quality is secondary if at all

2 weeks ago

I was a teenager in the '80s. You are describing exactly what I didn't like about 80s music! Everything was geared toward making the instruments sound inorganic. Nineties grunge pushed back against all of that, and I became a big grunge fan.

2 weeks ago

‘Hounds of Love’ is my favorite Kate Bush song and the drums are goddamn cool.

2 weeks ago

Do gated artillery only reverb.

2 weeks ago

2:32 t pose anthem

3 weeks ago

So nice! +1 Sub!!! :D

3 weeks ago

Oftentimes I hate it when YouTube "forgets" what I've already seen. Not with this video!

3 weeks ago

Please make an Earworm episode about the "Roxanne Wars"

3 weeks ago

ummmm what is the song 'dance on your knees' about? :-0

3 weeks ago

yo he was hitting that button really well

3 weeks ago

unnatural is right.

3 weeks ago