Watch Kevin Saunderson and Derrick May Talk Techno in Detroit in 1996

A documentary focusing on Techno in Detroit taps Kevin Saunderson and Derrick May to describe how the genre was influenced by the environment of the city
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A documentary focusing on Techno in Detroit taps Kevin Saunderson and Derrick May to describe how the genre was influenced by the environment of the city

Techno is a crucial genre in today's scene. Pioneered in Detroit, the distinct style has influenced multiple forms of electronic music and is continuing to evolve today. The repetitive rhythms and intricate arrangements have the ability to hypnotize the listener and captivate a dancefloor like no other. So what influenced this unmistakable genre to come about? A documentary from 1996 hits the nail on the head with explanations from two iconic producers, Derrick May and Kevin Saunderson.

Derrick May provides us with a profound description as to why this style of music coming out of Detroit has a raw and gritty motif. The industrial focus of the environment directly impacts the people who live there, which in turn brought about the machine based music.

"A machine has no love nor any feeling and sometimes the people that work for these machines end up having no feeling nor love, because they're working relentless hours, putting in total commitment to something that is giving nothing back."

There was no focus to create something that was "Techno", the style was a result of producers being influenced by their surroundings. With that in mind this is very much an anthropological discussion. People are directly impacted by their environment and this can be applied to various cities and cultures around the world. As Derrick May goes on to say "This environment created us, which in turn socially and subconsciously created all this music.”

Watch the video above to learn more.