Art Beat: featured radio show Dead Electric – vintage synth finds its place


Looking for something new and entertaining for your ears? Here it is, a radio show broadcasting the “sounds of future pasts”. Dead Electric, a show you can hear on independent public radio station 90.7 KSER in Everett and 89.9 KXIR on Whidbey Island, features vintage synths, space and new age music from the 70s and 80s.

The show’s DJ, David Haldeman, explained why this specific music called him, noting “…a time when music technology was changing rapidly, especially synthesizers and sampling, and there was this kind of marvel and admiration in the musicians’ approach to electronic music. at the moment. I also started the show because I felt there was a surprising lack of radio programming in this genre. There are so many shows that play vintage music, from swing and big band stuff to old rock to 80s pop. I found it surprising that older electronic music didn’t have a place on air.

DJDavid Haldeman

If you’re wondering which artists might fit this genre, a given show might include Tangerine Dream, Laurie Anderson, Giorgio Moroder, Vangelis, Kraftwerk, Clara Rockmore, Laraaji, Enya, Jonzun Crew, Klaus Schulze, and Michael Rother. Examples of genres are synthpop, ambient, electro, 8-bit Nintendo soundtracks, German kosmische, Berlin School, and even the occasional progressive rock song.

The mastermind behind this show has been listening to these tracks since his college days. Choose songs like The Ancient People’s Harp with Songs of Venus and Space Children instead of the more popular titles one would find at the time. David has always loved the happiness of escapist synths.

In addition to the radio show, David is also a deceased musician who writes under the name Basic Astronomy. He has created soundtracks for major museum exhibits, including Self-Reflected at the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia and the Dead Sea Scrolls exhibit at the Pacific Science Center. He is also a journalist and director of communications and content for Humanities Washington, our state affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities, where he edits and writes the magazine Spark.

When he’s not recording his show, you can see David around Edmonds, usually at Edmonds Bookshop, Marina Beach Park or Salish Sea Brewing. Dead Electric airs every Friday night from 10:30 p.m. to 12:30 a.m. But don’t worry – if it’s too late, you can listen to past shows for two weeks after the show date. Access the Radio Replayer on the KSER website to listen.

You can learn more on Dead Electric’s website or check out Instagram and Twitter at @deadelectricfm.

— By Rachel Gardner

Rachel Gardner genuinely appreciates art in all its forms and believes that everyone is an artist, some don’t know it yet. A dedicated and involved resident of Edmonds, she can often be spotted on stage cracking jokes between sets or in the audience enjoying local live performances. She loves having fun with her art and finding unique ways of expression, like forming a boho-grunge-folk ukulele trio with local Edmonds moms.


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