23 thoughts on “Blue Monday, ’30s Style

  1. If somebody did an homage to the bar scene on Tatooine in the original Star Wars in a Steampunk setting, this is what it would probably look and sound like.

  2. I always find New Order/ Joy Division a bit… odd at the best of times, even the hugely cheesy “Baywatch” version of Regret from Top of the Pops.

  3. Cool. But what do they mean “obsolete”? None of those instruments (except maybe the Dulcitone) is obsolete!

  4. @Bruce Munro

    I’d say “detuned” more like – you’ll notice on older recordings of jazz and classical music, the instruments are much less in tune with each other than they are on modern recordings. It’s not because people had worse ears in the 1930s, but that, especially on the comparatively low-fi recording, broadcast and playback equipment they had back then, the clashing harmonics fool you into thinking the sound is much bigger, richer, and deeper than it actually is. You hear a more subtle version of the same technique on 1960s Motown records, for example, or with small horn sections in modern bands. It’s why the horn sections in Mariachi bands are never quite in tune – you take two or three trumpet players, detune them slightly, and they sound huge.

  5. EJ, I was once told that the multiple strings on the high notes of a piano are similarly (though perhaps not to the same degree) tuned “out” to increase the fullness of their sound.

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