Say what you want, ‘cos this is a new art school
Speaking of mashing and remixing, the entire new album from Danger Mouse can now be heard here as part of NPR’s Exclusive First Listen series. Dark Knight of the Soul is an impressive document of artistic collaboration, the DJ/producer/artist working with Sparklehorse and guests including Iggy Pop, Frank Black, Vic Chesnutt, the Flaming Lips, the Strokes’ Julian Casablancas, Super Furry Animals’ Gruff Rhys, the Cardigans’ Nina Persson, The Shins’ James Mercer, Jason Lytle, Suzanne Vega, and probably others.
So can you buy this album? Kinda. You can purchase a jewel box containing a poster and a “custom designed” blank CD-R for $10 or, for $50, all that plus a limited edition (5,000 copies) hand-numbered art book of original photographs by film director David Lynch.
Why is the CD-R blank? The official statement explains: “Due to an ongoing dispute with EMI, Danger Mouse is unable to include music on the CD without fear of legal entanglement. Therefore, he has included a blank CD-R as an artifact to use however you see fit.”
My cynical nature twitches at this non-explanation explanation, especially remembering that Danger Mouse zoomed into the public consciousness with the Grey Album, a critically acclaimed project that threw down a virtual gauntlet to the traditional music industry. But regardless of its genesis or motivation, I think the project is genius.
(Title lyric by Paul Weller/the Jam.)