Atari Teenage Riot in WIRED Magazine

Atari Teenage Riot in WIRED Magazine

Tim Gauthier

Check out the write up and photos below taken from Septembers issues of Wired Magazine.

In 1997, Rage Against The Machine took a support act on their “Evil Empire” tour called Atari Teenage Riot. These radical techno-punks, with their veneration of the Atari ST computer that they used to control their synths, ruffled a few feathers. “The engineers would say, ‘You guys want to kill rock and roll,’ recalls Alec Empire, ATR’s Berlin-based frontman. “‘If everyone just put a computer on stage we wouldn’t have a job.'”

Today the band is touring Is This Hyperreal?, their first studio album in over a decade, at a time when information technologies pervade music. But the disruptive effect of the group’s hardware hasn’t been neutralised, says Empire, 39. Rather, it has evolved.

On the Atari, all of the musical data is hand-coded: every note, pitch bend and velocity. “It’s weird loading up information written in 1992 — I wonder who else could understand it. So perhaps the computer can now be seen as an instrument,” says Empire. “Then the question is how much more modern does music made on a modern computer sound?”

The group’s “glitchy” tones — a kind of designed imperfection — also have new meaning. From music to nuclear energy, “people look at technology as a religion and say, ‘This will solve all our problems.’ I’m very sceptical about that.”

To here to see the article on Wired.