Hearing about what the whole world is talking about…

6 Jun


which is just genius.

Creator James Houston explains:

Radiohead held an online contest to remix “Nude” from their album – “In Rainbows” This was quite a difficult task for all the electronic musicians that entered, as Nude is in 6/8 timing, and 63bpm. Most music that’s played in clubs is around 120bpm and usually 4/4 timing. It’s near impossible to mix a waltz beat into a DJ set.

This resulted in lots of generic entries consisting of a typical 4/4 beat, but with arbitrary clips from “Nude” thrown in so that they qualified for the contest.

Thom Yorke joked at the ridiculousness of it in an interview for NPR radio, hinting that they set the competition “for a laugh” and to find out what would come out of such an impossible task.

I decided to take the piss a bit, as the contest seemed to be in that spirit.

Based on the lyric (and alternate title) “Big Ideas: Don’t get any” I grouped together a collection of old redundant hardware, and placed them in a situation where they’re trying their best to do something that they’re not exactly designed to do, and not quite getting there.

It doesn’t sound great, as it’s not supposed to.

Sinclair ZX Spectrum – Guitars (rhythm & lead)
Epson LX-81 Dot Matrix Printer – Drums
HP Scanjet 3c – Bass Guitar
Hard Drive array – Act as a collection of bad speakers – Vocals & FX

HD: Big Ideas (Don’t get any) from 1030 on Vimeo.

It’s such a great idea, and it’s amazingly well done. It makes me wonder about the sounds that some factory machine in Siberia might be making in the dead of night. How the hum of a supercomputer in Southern California could follow the melody of a swedish pop song, or how an industrial fryer in Grimsby could be chinking along to the drum beat of Arcade Fire’s Keep The Car Running.

Music is sort of one big collection and sampling process. We take the noises around us, filter them down. Select the ones we like, add them together and build our own sonic landscapes which are in reality a reworking of the ugly sounds, the beautiful sounds, and those background noises which we experience everyday.

Reminds me of Bjork’s starring role in Dancer In The Dark, which is a brilliant but absolutely devasting film.

This clip from the film was my first ever introduction to Bjork, broadcast on saturday morning Japanese TV, and I spent nearly 8 years looking for the film, or music video it came from. Seeing it for the second time the other day was an amazing experience.


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