In browsing Magnatune and looking for music to feature in our student radio show, I stumbled accross Brad Sucks, a one-man band with lots of fans, despite what he claims. Usually kids that get their hands on microphones and copies of Cubase produce junk, but this guy has stellar multiinstrumentalist talent and a record deal with a net-label. His album, "I Don't Know What I'm Doing is tasty and enjoyable.
All of the music on Magnatune is licensed under a Creative Commons license, and some of the artists even release the "source" of their work. Brad did just that. When I learned of this, I immediately imagined every kid pirating a copy of Reason and cranking out songs consisting of the stock drum loops, synthy bleeps and as many effects as possible. Luckily, only a few of the remixes sound that way. Brad even picked eighteen of his favorite remixes to release as a separate "album."
Always wanting to see "behind the scenes," I downloaded all remixes that didn't make it to the remix album. After 76 or so songs, it got pretty tiring to hear the same, although good, vocal tracks over and over again. It's pretty hard to work in the confines of someone else's samples -- you can't change the rhythm or melody of the vocals without serious work/money/equipment and the risk of having it sound fake. I wanted to hear mixes, if not covers, that added some serious creativity to the original tracks. Here's what I jotted down.
You can download all of these songs from the extras page: