When you think of countries that are important in the history of the synthesizer and electronic music, it’s easy to focus on the United States with famous inventors and manufacturers such as Moog, Buchla, Oberheim and many others. Or to think of Japan with well-known brands like Yamaha, Roland, Korg and even Casio. If you are up on your electronic music history, the Trautonium or theh Ondes Martenot might spring to mind as important early contributions by Germany and France respectively.
But you probably don’t think of Russia.
And yet Russians were involved in electronic music from the very earliest stages, and synthesizers were developed and widely used in the former Soviet Union – both officially and underground. And like most things Russian, the synthesizers of the Soviet Union were, for the most part, no mere imitators of their Western cousins, but had a style and sound all their own.
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