You can now watch GForce’s Bright Sparks synth documentary for free

Released in December 2015, GForce’s Bright Sparks documentary tells the story of eight electronic musical instrument pioneers. Originally available as a Vimeo rental and paid-for-download, the great news is that this is now being made free to watch on YouTube. 

The synth legends in question are Robert Moog (Moog), Alan R Pearlman (ARP), Don Buchla (Buchla), Harry Chamberlin (Chamberlin), The Bradley Brothers (Mellotronics), Adrian Wagner (Electronic Dream Plant), Peter Zinovieff (EMS) and Ken Freeman (Freeman String Symphonizer).

Exploring what drove these passionate engineers to create their iconic instruments, the film features contributions from the likes of I Monster’s Dean Honer and Jarrod Gosling, Will Gregory (Goldfrapp), Rick Smith & Karl Hyde (Underworld), Alessandro Cortini (Nine Inch Nails), Billy Currie and Chris Cross (Ultravox), Daniel Miller (Mute) and Adrian Utley (Portishead). 

Bright Sparks was produced by GForce’s Dave Spiers, who says of the free release: “It’s great to be able to bring it into the fold and make those inspiring encounters viewable by everyone. For this new release, I’ve added stories about how the project came to be, as well as some behind the scenes anecdotes that I hope you’ll enjoy.”

There are actually several videos going up on the GForce Software YouTube channel (opens in new tab). The ‘A Side’ of Bright Sparks, which focuses on the US pioneers, is live now, as is a behind the scenes ‘extra’ that introduces the project and focuses on Moog and Arp.

There’ll be another behind the scenes mini-film going live on Tuesday 16 February; this introduces the British designers profiled in the project. Bright Sparks Side B, which covers these people in detail, goes live on Thursday 18 February.

Ben Rogerson

I’m the Deputy Editor of MusicRadar, having worked on the site since its launch in 2007. I previously spent eight years working on our sister magazine, Computer Music. I’ve been playing the piano, gigging in bands and failing to finish tracks at home for more than 30 years, 24 of which I’ve also spent writing about music and the ever-changing technology used to make it. 

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