The Shape of Things That Hum
is a synthesizer documentary series that first aired by Channel 4 in the UK during 2001.
The series focused on electronic instruments that helped shaped modern music, with every episode focusing on a specific instrument. The episodes were broadcast between 01.30am and 01.41am, and featured musicians talking about classic vintage synthesizers, including the DX7 that defined the sound of the 1980s.
Production company Allied Forces
Producer Jacques Peretti
First broadcast 2001
Original channel Channel 4 (UK)
No. of episodes 8
Length 11 minutes (episode)
Mini Moog (15-01-2001) - Cult electronic instruments that helped to shape modern music.
Vocoder (22-01-2001) - Developed as a scrambling device in World War II, includes interviews with Orbital and Rick Wakeman.
DX7 (29-01-2001) - Synthesizer that defined the sound of the 1980s. Interviews with Vince Clarke and Nick Rhodes.
Fairlight (05-02-2001) - Computer based snthesizer offering sampling, digital recording, sequencing and editing. Includes Nick Rhodes.
Simmons (12-02-2001) - Includes producer Arthur Baker talking about making "Planet Rock".
Roland TB-303 (19-02-2001) - House innovators Coldcut and Orbital discuss the Roland 303 synthesizer.
Roland TB-808 (26-02-2001) - Includes producer Arthur Baker, plus Ray Keith talks about the importance of the bass.
Akai Sampler (05-03-2001) - Instrument that helped fuel the rave scene and the white label explosion