In the annals of film and television, certain musical themes manage to transcend the moving image. From the whistle that brings in Morricone’s The Good, the Bad and the Ugly theme, to Tangerine Dream’s “Love On A Real Train,” memorable scores have the uncanny ability to sum up an epoch, an entire aesthetic. Prolific Texan musician Kyle Dixon has crafted, alongside Michael Stein, a body of work that’s synonymous with the fictional town of Hawkins, Indiana, the supernatural everytown at the center of the Netflix hit Stranger Things. But in just a few short years, their sound has expanded far beyond ’80s Indiana, acting as the natural counterpoint for VR-visions of the Universe (Spheres), the Chicago streets of Rashid Johnson’s Native Son adaptation, Silicon Valley (Valley Of The Boom) and even the intimate gender transition of an 11-year girl in the British mini-series Butterfly. Exploring the full potential of racks of synthesizers and drum machines, Dixon and Stein write music for the present moment. The Stranger Things kids have matured into emotionally-nuanced teenagers, and on their recent score for Season 3, they’ve turned in 41 tracks of their most dynamic, and emotionally resonant work to date. Their score for the National Geographic documentary on the beginnings of the Northern California tech explosion, Valley Of The Boom, includes melodic techno that channels the motorik optimism of Kraftwerk, while their Butterfly score transforms the lofty concepts of German cosmic music into timeless instrumental pop music.
In this session, Dixon will be interviewed by composer, songwriter, producer and artist Tessa Rose Jackson. Tessa herself is a self-confessed synthesizer geek with a deep love for the instrument’s boundless possibilities, as well as the science-fiction tinged imagery they can conjure up. A conversation between the two promises a dive into Dixon’s creative process including how he sculpted his musical sound to where it is today.
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