“It’s the most futuristic thing you’ve ever heard. Like… what? A drum… inside a machine?” – Questlove.
Assembled by director Alex Dunn, 808 is the documentary that pays homage to the instrument that changed music.
The feature length presentation details the rise and influence of the Roland TR-808 Rhythm Composer or Drum Machine which has shaped the sound of popular music since its invention by two Japanese technicians in the early 80s.
The impact the instrument has had on not just hip-hop, where it found its initial niche, but on almost every genre of music that came after it, has not gone unnoticed. Hell, Kanye West even named a whole album after it. This documentary reaches out to legends from far and wide, who heap their thanks on a rectangular box of wires and noise that changed the game. Zane Lowe of Apple Music’s Beats 1 Radio acts as narrator, guiding the audience through the instrument’s history, tapping into the positively undivided opinions and experiences of Questlove, Pharrell Williams, Rick Rubin, Diplo, Armand Van Helden, Phil Collins, Damon Albarn just to name a few.
The documentary has already done the rounds at film festivals across the world. As for the rest of us, it will be available to enjoy in just a few weeks time, when it will be released for streaming via Apple Music on December 9. For now check out the trailer below, and get excited: