How simple is techno – that genre that seems unstoppable, from Asia to Antarctica? It’s simple enough that it can be reduced to … six steps. No, kind of – seriously.

I expected to have my intelligence insulted by this video, and yet … uh, well, I’m an addict, because it just made me want to go make some new percussion samples. The approach is oddly on point and – let’s be honest – looks like fun.

You don’t need six steps, even, as I’m not sure what that acappella is about.

(The video was evidently created by artist Hobo, aka Canada/Detroit artist Joel Boychuk. And maybe part of why this works is, he’s a great artist.)

So, wait, before either a) some techno purists scoff at how wrong this is or how it’s just a joke, or b) some techno haters scoff at how this proves techno isn’t even music … let’s talk about what’s going on here.

So here’s my theory. Even before I get into my “techno is the new folk music” spiel, I can say this:

Making techno is like making pasta.

Anyone can make pasta. Anyone can enjoy making pasta. You can dump in a box of dry pasta, boil it, dump a can of tomato sauce on it and some cheese, and it’s pretty delicious. That might … cause … health problems after a while, so you can make pasta out of veggies or gluten-free pasta. You can add meat or fish or whatever. It’s still a pretty simple thing.

Even the sophisticated ways of making great pasta are not hard to understand. There are recipes. There are video tutorials. You can do it.

None of that accessibility has made pasta less desirable. (Again, if you’re anti-carbs, you can even do this veggie pasta thing – insert “experimental techno” forms here.)

Pasta is available all over the world now.

And yet even given all those things, none of this has robbed expert chefs of making truly exceptional pasta. What they’re doing is fundamentally no different from what you’re doing. You can even learn from what they’re doing and improve your dinner. But they’re still able to master truly great pasta, because that’s not about complexity, but about nuance.

And the beauty of simplicity is, it allows you to focus on nuance. When the template is this basic, then it’s obvious that variation is everything. And some of those variations can be discovered in an instant.

Of course, it’s possible I’m totally wrong, and the use of pans for sampling threw me off, or this is all ridiculous and I’m actually just hungry. But that’s okay, because some noodles will satisfy me, and then I won’t really care about what anyone else thinks, and I won’t really even need a metaphor.

Actually – that last bit may have been more important than any of the others.

And Hobo is still a master chef.

Obligatory – I got carried away, and left this out. This is a how-to to some proper oldshool 90s rave action, here.

  • chaircrusher

    Strong Bad did it first.

    • Ha, that was the first thing I thought of when I saw this.

      Then I got hungry, and in the midst of a spaghetti reverie, forgot to embed. Fixed. 🙂

      • Thomas Wayne

        Strong Bad always has a neat perspective on things. Classic…

  • Gabriel Rey-Goodlatte

    Your pasta analogy is brilliant and on point, and I think it deserves its own video.

  • Bozilovic Milos

    Awesome text.. Simple truth that makes you smile ☺

  • That is the beauty of this form. Simple and to the point with seemingly unlimited interpretations and always satisfying (unless goes terribly wrong!)

  • Corné
  • Foosnark

    Art (or techno, or pasta) doesn’t have to be difficult. We have all these myths about genius and suffering and struggle and whatnot, but what it really comes down to is just making the thing. And preferably, making more and more until it becomes a reflex.

    • Micronautics

      You’re confusing crafts with art

      • Foosnark

        Nope, I’m really not.

  • Luiz Zen

    That video of strong bad is hilarious! hahaha