Amp (TV series)
|Country of origin||United States|
|Running time||60 minutes|
|Original release||September 6, 1996 – 2001|
Amp was a music video program on MTV that aired from 1996 to 2001. It was aimed at the electronic music and rave crowd and was responsible for exposing many electronica acts to the mainstream. When co-creator Todd Mueller (who had worked on this with V. Owen Bush and Amy Finnerty) left the show in 1998, it was redubbed Amp 2.0. The show aired some 46 episodes in total over its 6-year run. In its final two years, reruns were usually shown from earlier years. Amp's time slot was moved around quite a bit, but the show usually aired in the early morning hours on the weekend, usually 2am to 4am. Because of this late night time slot, the show developed a small but cult like following. A few online groups formed after the show's demise to ask MTV to bring the show back and air it during normal hours, but MTV never responded to the requests.
The show was possibly inspired by the underground public access show "TV w/ Ray Cathode" (later named Dizzy TV) that started airing in Manhattan in 1993 and ran from 1993-1999. "TV w/ Ray Cathode" was an underground experimental television show that aired abstract video imagery with electronic music soundtracks by FAX +49-69/450464, Thomas Fehlmann, Sun Electric, The Orb, Aphex Twin, Warp Records and many others. "TV w/ Ray Cathode" show producer Beau Tardy also worked at MTV and was friends with Todd Mueller. However he never worked on AMP.
The format of the show strongly resembled the original MTV model of broadcasting primarily music videos, but without VJs to host. The show started with an intro and logo, some basic information about that week's show contents via onscreen text, then an hour of electronic music was played before the show's conclusion. The show's theme song was "Tempest" by Deepsky. Nick Philip, a San-Francisco based multi-media artist created the first video for Amp, "Meccano" by Sun Electric. Occasionally, non-electronic but still classic music videos were aired for the sake of nostalgia within the electronic genre, such as Ofra Haza's music video for "Im Nin'Alu," which was sampled by several electronic artists in the early 1990s.
The show was popular enough that MTV produced two compilations of songs by artists featured on Amp. MTV's Amp was released in 1997 and MTV's Amp 2 came out a year later in 1998. Both albums were released by Caroline Records.