MetaFilter 2009: mashup classics / polar opposite covers
Musica Globalista: Simon Reynolds on Astronaut No. 1 Instant Digest or, Bruce Sterling pokes at mashups, plunderphonics, and related audio slipmixologies
this comic sparked a the following email conversation, back in 2006:
Wanamaker: Man, that is spot-on. So many mashups seem to be inspired by juvenile “wouldn’t it be clever of me to combine...” moments that are linguistically, rather than musically inspired.
Me: that’s a pun, on some level, isn’t it? combining things with entirely separate meanings? not combining things with separate musical meanings, but lexical meanings? maybe that’s not a pun. it’s a collage.
no, I think it’s a pun.
Wanamaker: Yeah, I have definitely felt a similar reaction to a good mashup as with a good pun. It involves a head making similar kinds of connections between disparate items. In a pun’s case, it’s linguistic/phonetic/lexiconic. In a mashup, it is musical/rhythmic/chronological(historic), so just dragging the names together to rationalize it cheapens the effort.
Me: no, I was asserting that combining disparate elements connected only by an accident of linguistics (?) was a pun. Toby Keith and Keith Emerson.
It cheapens the effort? No -- it’s a different effort. It’s not a musical combination; it’s something else.
That jarring collision isn’t the result of great music being made, being great music or any kind of music was never the intention.
now THAT’S a mashup. like a cake-mod, perhaps? two completely dissimilar things mashed together, forced, crushed, by dint of accidental punning collusion, minor elements ascending over major, so that new forms emerge, rending former finished products mere prima materia.
Is that where our disgust lies? At seeing that our fine finished selves could be considered so much lego blocks for someone to mix-n-match, that everything is but a Mr. Potato-Head kit?
None of the similes are anywhere near the level of similarity I need.
Wanamaker: I did. It was OK; Glassbreaks was more my speed
Me: I didn’t start listening to it until Friday -- forgot all about it. I like it. Much more than “grey album” & its brethren. I like more references and cross-skittering of my mashies.
Ramjac’s mix, “All Together Now,” layers every single Beatles song atop one another, in reverse order of length, so that for the first few seconds, all you hear is “Revolution 9″ (the longest song in the songbook), then “Hey Jude” atop it, and “She’s So Heavy,” and then more and more, until it crashes all together at the last note, with 226 tracks all colliding.
As a commenter notes (in response to someone who felt that the Beatles musical legacy was being destroyed), “It’s not destroying anything; it’s creating something new. Something new that hardly sounds like the Beatles, even though they are the only source for the material.”
Antique (2004) MetaFilter thread