The Many Genres of Drone

Mar 5, 2014

Credit NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center via flickr Creative Commons

The cosmos is full of noisy wonders including, strangely enough, black holes that have been emitting drone sounds for millions of years. And art truly does imitate nature in the genre of drone music. Marcus Boon wrote about drone for Boing Boing, and despite a knee-jerk reaction to pass it off as potentially annoying, it turns out that drone music is pretty popular.Popular enough, even, to have several sub-grenres.

In a consumer marketplace driven by a craving for endless but often trivial kinds of novelty, making the same sound for a long time is a powerful gesture of refusal. - Marcus Boon

The Roots of Drone: Here's one of the first known examples of 'drone' entering the mainstream.  Listen for the haunting cello note that sounds like it WILL NEVER EVER END.

Drone Metal:  Sunn O))),  "Báthory Erzsébet"

Drone-Based Techno: Sandwell District, "Feed Forward Test Session"

Classical Drone: La Monte Young, "The Second Dream of the HighTension Line Step "

Drone-Folk: Yes, Drone-folk.  It's a thing.: Mountains, "Map Table"