Art Mineo "Man in Space with Sounds" (1962)https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BUOAxm8FS4U
I've not been able to track down precisely what synthesizers are used here, but at the time, heavy reverb (often accomplished on large sound lab devices) was a huge thing for these "modernistic compositions with alien-sounding effects laboriously produced on pre-Moog electronic instruments."
[Side note: I know that Novachords were commonly used in "space music", being the world's first commercial polyphonic synthesizer.
All-electronic, incorporating many circuit and control elements found in modern synthesizers, and using subtractive synthesis to generate tones, it was designed by John M. Hanert, Laurens Hammond, and C. N. Williams, and was manufactured by the Hammond company.
Only 1,069 Novachords were built over a period from 1939 to 1942.]
These all-original compositions fall somewhere between nervous Philip Glass and 1950s sci-fi movie music, arranged with string orchestra in a sometimes rhythmic, polyrhythmic, or merely ambient cloud of odd electronic space noises.
Recorded in 1951 but only released in conjunction with the 1962 Seattle World's Fair as the musical accompaniment to the Bubbelator, a transparent, spherical elevator that carried as many as 150 passengers, Attilio Mineo's "Man in Space with Sounds" remains one of the most foreboding and complex records in the cosmic exotica canon.
Decades of water under the Space Needle have imbued it with kitsch value on par with similarly "far out" orchestral space music recordings by Esquivel, Richard Marino, Paul Tanner, Frank Comstock, and Martin Denny.
But if you look past its inherited irony, there's an uneasy dichotomy to "Man in Space with Sounds" that's as old as our dreams.
In the narrated version of this album, a World's Fair tour guide narrates Mineo's compositions with canned enthusiasm and period nonsequiturs, but the music itself can be disorienting, even bleak.
"If there is one theme which dominates our tour in space, it is man's eternal search for a brighter future," Mineo cautions--with horror-flick string melodies and frigid electronic oscillations floating in and out of orchestra music.
A dark, dissonant exploration of interstellar travel rooted in the avant-garde ethos of John Cage and Karlheinz Stockhausen, this is music that's alien not only in its presentation but also in its orientation, fusing traditional instrumentation and sound effects to the point that one becomes indistinguishable from the other.
Electronic elements pulse, hum, and sputter their way to complete domination of Mineo's sonic palette, depicting a bleak, sterile future where mankind gives way to machinery.
Two versions of the LP were released, one with World's Fair voice-over narration and the other without, and the former is all the more chilling for its seeming ambivalence to technology's awesome power.
A1 Welcome To Tomorrow
A2 Gateway To Heaven
A3 Soaring Science
A4 Mile-A-Minute Monorail
A5 Around The World
A6 Century 21
B1 Man In Art
B2 The Queen City
B3 Man Sees The Future
B4 Boeing Spacearium
B5 Science Of Tomorrow
B6 Space Age World's Fair#spacemusic