Plenty of bands have jumped on the "remix generation" bandwagon, releasing music to be remixed and sampled and visualized as a publicity stunt. But, then, plenty of bands aren’t Radiohead. Readers here may have been disappointed that our favorite superband didn’t embrace Creative Commons sharing when announcing their iTunes-only stems. But a number of the artists we follow came up with some brilliant work.
In Visuals: Robert Hodgin, aka Flight404, has the enviable job of exploring new visual expressions as his day gig of sorts. Working primarily in code developed in the open-source, Java-powered Processing, he develops a technique and then iterates and iterates on it until it goes from computer gimmick to refined artistry. He blogs that process, as well, pushing forward the rest of the Processing community. His video above uses abstract, generative processes to visualize Radiohead’s "Weird Fishes", but is developed enough to become organic. It’s a voyage under the sea. Via our sister site, Create Digital Motion.
In Music: A number of readers tackled the Radiohead remix contest. Here’s my favorite: our friend Alan Molina created a sparse string accompaniment that spotlights Tom Yorke’s vocal part. He explains:
Thanks for listening! I actually recorded and mixed all the strings.
They are all a violin (just lots of layers of me). My profession is an orchestral violinist–this remix was an outlet to do something different!
I used Ableton Live 7 for the effects, and used the kind of mic that clips on behind the bridge of a violin. Done on my couch in front of my computer!
Of course, the other direction to go is stretching the tune past the point of recognizability, with strange bizarro-universe remixes pulling the tune to experimental glitch and faux-punk. Here are a few of the more unusual takes on their music:
But I have to say, I’m delighted by these results. They really do give me a new sense of the music. And to people who complained that it’s a publicity stunt … well, hey, at this point, I think you all know who Radiohead is, so I don’t particularly feel like I’m shilling for them. (Hey! You’ve got to listen to this new band!)
What’s wonderful about this is getting to hear the songs differently — and, whatever Radiohead’s celebrity, you’ve got to admit Thom Yorke’s voice got to where it did for a reason.
But if you are looking to discover some new music, definitely check out the comment thread on the previous story with other artists offering remixes and stems.
And if you’ve got a favorite Nude remix you want to share, let us know in comments.
No, not photos of you remixing in Ableton in the nude! Sheesh. Wish I hadn’t opened my inbox.