Music and Gaming - OctaMED (Commodore Amiga)


 In this series we take a look at computer game soundtracks from the past that influenced a generation of people to become fans of electronic and underground music. It is no secret that for the youth of the 80s and 90s, computer games played an integral roll in influencing and forming musical tastes. From techno to hip-hop, video games exposed the youth to music that was outside of commercial radio at the time, and long before the internet. Join us on our journey in rediscovering the best of the bunch. 

Stepping outside of the standard agenda of this series, today we take a peek at an absolute revolution in the use of home gaming consoles and electronic music.

If you think Ableton looks confusing, the below image shows the equivalent back in the early 1990s.


OctaMED was a music production suite designed for the Commodore Amiga console.

The distinguishing feature of MED and OctaMED in comparison to other music trackers on the Amiga was that MED and OctaMED were chiefly used by musicians to create stand-alone works, rather than by game or demo musicians to make tunes that play in the context of a computer game or demo.

In others words, the entire bedroom producer culture was born out of this software and its limited, yet brilliantly used capabilities.

It only had 4 Channels to work with, and graphically there was a rather daunting interface, making Ableton today seem like a dream.

Here is a video showing a track produced on the software playing by heavyweight Jungle/DnB legend Aphrodite. 
DJ Aphrodite who was also part of Urban Shakedown, used two Amiga 1200's running OctaMED to create a range of his early hits such as "Dub Moods", "Summer Breeze", "King Of The Beats", joint productions with Micky Finn such as "Bad Ass" and the remix of 'The Jungle Brothers'-"True Blue" and also including his first album, Aphrodite.

NOTE- The stereo field is pretty messed up. (For reasons we won't bore you with here)