Thursday, March 11, 2010

In Search of Digital Love

A 63-minute aural exploration of Daft Punk's 2001 masterpiece, "Digital Love." What started out as a simple idea for a podcast with a few interviews and a few music clips evolved into a pseudo-documentary, before finally taking shape as a sort of critical mashup. Give it a listen (though be forewarned: some of the mp3-derived sound quality is negligible-bordering-on-terrible... some of the messiness is deliberate too, of course). (Available as an MP3.)

Big thanks to the following participants -- these brave souls who followed my wacky (mostly indescribable, even to myself) hunch and made this entire operation feasible. (Not to mention a heck of a lot of fun to compile.)

  • Brian MacDonald
  • Michaelangelo Matos
  • Nate Patrin

  • Geoffrey Baines
  • Phil Dellio
  • Jonathan Delvecchio (Ukranian/French)
  • Lindsey Donovan
  • Ahmed Egeh (Somali)

    TRACKLIST (In order of appearance)
    -Eric B & Rakim, "Paid in Full" (Coldcut remix)
    -Elegants, Little Star"
    -Madonna, "Nobody's Perfect"
    -Miracle Fortress, "Digital Love" (cover)
    -Musical Youth, "Pass the Dutchie"
    -Mad Mix Mustang, "Is this Digital Love" (Bob Marley vs Daft Punk)
    -Beastie Boys, "Hold It Now, Hit It"
    -Algeronics remix of "Digital Love"
    -Gattobus, "Digital Love" (cover)
    -Alphabeat, "Digital Love" (cover)
    -George Duke, "I Love You More"
    -Grandmaster Flash, "Adventures of Grandmaster Flash on the Wheels of Steel"
    -Derek & the Dominoes, "Layla"
    -The Orb, "Little Fluffy Clouds"
    -Gary Wright, "Dream Weaver"
    -Keri Chandler, "Digital Love Affair"
    -Red Hot Disco Express LP (feat. Gino Soccio et al.)
    -Pure Power! LP (feat. Sylvers et al.)
    -Kraftwerk, "Ohm Sweet Ohm"
    -ELO, "Strange Magic"
    -Olivia Newton-John, "Magic"
    -Pilot, "Magic"
    -Heart, "Magic Man"
    -10CC, "I'm Not in Love"
    -Air, "Remember"
    -CJ Connection, "Digital Love/September" (Daft Punk vs. EWF)
    -Earth, Wind and Fire, "September"
    -Schoolly-D, "Get Your Filas On"
    -Sku, "Digital Love" (cover)
    -DJ Shoe, "Digital mashup" (Fifth Dimension/Peter, Paul & Mary/Everly Brothers/Sugababes)
    -Majors, "A Wonderful Dream"
    -Mayhem, "Digital Love" (talkbox cover)
    -Vocaleers, "Is it a Dream"
    -Fred Astaire, "Dream Dancing"
    -Drastic Harmonic Sessions, "Digital Love" (cover)
    -Philip Oakey & Giorgio Moroder, "Together in Electric Dreams"
    -Giorgio Moroder, "The Duel"
    -Lali Puna, "Together in Electric Dreams"
    -Hell Electric remix of "Digital Love"
    -unknown [via Youtube], Daft Punk vs. Kylie Minogue ("Wow")
    -Buggles, "Video Killed the Radio Star"
    -Les 100 Plus Grands LP advertisement (feat. Village People)
    -Steve Winwood, "The Finer Things"
    -Shangri-Las, Give Him a Great Big Kiss"
    -Zapp, "Computer Love"
    -Supertramp, "Dreamer"
    -Supertramp, "The Logical Song"
    -- Piano breakdown mashup featuring: Hell Electric/Miracle Fortress/DJ Nicky T (DP vs. Sean Kingston)/Hatsune Miku Kagamine Rin/Drastic Harmonic Sessions/The Situationists
    -Tommy Edwards, "It's All in the Game"
    -Hall Starz, "Digital Love" (cover)
    -Peter Frampton, "Do You Feel Like We Do"
    -Daft Punk, "Robot Rock"
    -Daft Punk, "Digital Love"

    1. Great job all -- needs to be more studies like this!

    2. Keep making audio documentaries like this. This mix was awesome, reminded me of radiolab.

    3. This was really, really, really well done. Loved it. Great job.

    4. I was linked to this way by a friend a few days ago, and found a moment to listen it through tonight. So, feedback for thought:

      While I can appreciate the effort on this piece, this one felt a little overambitious for a single Daft Punk song. If you had instead chosen to explore their entire discography (and the ins, outs, and inbetweens), the 63-minute tag would have felt more warranted.

      I felt far too much time was lost to padding with movie quotes, time that could've been easily condensed by layering up some of your material (or cutting out those that felt wholly irrelevant, the Wall-E snip for example).

      It wasn't all bad though. A few interesting mash-ups, and connections drawn between notably similar elements in other songs. The interviewees seemed a little gushy at moments, but brought in an element of discussion. And it's too easy to see that this kind of mix takes a considerable amount of time spent researching and mixing - You've gotta be dedicated to pull it off.

      So, kudos to you. You kept my attention and kept me listening, so you can call that a success. Keep working over your mixing and material, we need a little more DJ Food around here. :)