Category Archives: Thoughts & Field Notes

Immortal Musicians? No, thanks.

By now most anyone who has ears & an internet connection, has seen this holographic performance by “2pac”. The sheer awesomeness of this is enough to warrant attention from all corners of the world wide internets. But there’s another aspect to this that immediately caught our attention, and more interestingly, sparked our imaginations: future applications of this technology.

How soon will we see holographic performances by Elvis, Kurt Cobain, Bob Marley or Frank Sinatra? Does this mean the end of cover bands and impersonators? We sorely hope the answer is no.

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Invisible Monsters Remix!

Chuck Palahniuk – The man, the myth, the legend. Whether or not you explicitly know his work, you know his work. Being the author of such classics as Fight Club, Choke, Survivor, Snuff, etc… His literary work has a deep basis in film, and video culture, and as a consequence, many of his books have become movies, and many more of his books are slated to become movies.

This cross-media nature to Chuck’s work, makes this new endeavor all the more exciting. His SMASH hit – and our favorite book of his – Invisible Monsters, is slated to be re-released as a “REMIX” edition come this june. From the press release:

“Injected with new material and special design elements, Invisible MonstersRemix fulfills Chuck Palahniuk’s original vision for his 1999 novel, turning a daring satire on beauty and the fashion industry into an even more wildly unique reading experience. Laced in are new chapters of memoir and further scenes with the book’s characters. Readers will jump between chapters, reread the book to understand the dissolve between fiction and fact, and decipher the playful book design.”

Remix culture has had a slow creep over the last 15-20 years, and with the introduction of new tools, that allow for faster, better and more reliable creative output, it’s hard to believe this creep has any boundaries. And we’re super excited to see that remixing has finally landed on non-digital shores.

We can not wait to check out this incredible concept, and see if it flys or falls flat. Either way, it’s the dawning of a new era, and we’re excited!

Find out more & check out Chucks’ tour dates here: Chuck Palahniuk

Hill House Radio

Many of you may already be aware of our latest self-produced endeavor, Hill House Radio, but for those of you who haven’t, or aren’t quite sure what it is, we’d like to formally introduce you all.

Hill House Radio (HHR) is a bi-weekly (once every 2 weeks) music podcast that the Humble Giants team has been working on, and releasing, since the beginning of 2012 (first episodes released on 1/2/2012 to be exact!). HHR is our attempt to engage with culture and be a content provider. The podcast doesn’t look to revolutionize music or how you listen to music – rather, our goal is to provide a solid 1-hr long playlist to our friends, partners and fans. These are tunes that we, at Humble Giants, listen to, work to and play to – and we thought sharing these would be a great way to give you all a glimpse into our aural world.

We also happen to think these playlists represent some of the best that the music world has to offer, and has offered. HHR isn’t just about current/trending music, it’s about GOOD music. So whether that means a brand new tune from Tanlines (like in the just released, episode #17), a massive classic (like Nightshift from Commodores, episode #16) or a brilliant new remix of a beloved tune (like the Hannes Fischer remix of 93′ Til Infinity, episode #10), we craft every episode with a mind towards flow, not popularity.

As we say on the HHR website:

“Our musical guide is the tap in our foot — blind to borders and eras. So sit back, subscribe and enjoy some great tunes with us. Whether you’re at work, at the gym, mixing a cocktail or just professionally chilling, HHR will have something for you. And if you’re a music buff, a n00b or still listening to Toni Braxton, HHR will probably have something for you too.”

Hill House Radio Website
Link to Subscribe (via iTunes) to HHR

Silverton – POW Wedding

What’s been happening during our hiatus? We’ll have to see if Daniel the Giant decides to share his adventures following his return… For now we’d like to share with you a little trip we took to Silverton, Colorado. We’ve been to all kinds of mountains and resorts, but Silverton is unique. The mountain is guided only during most of the year, and offers visitors endless pow runs and pillow lines. This is a TRUE mountain experience. Much thanks goes out to our friends Erin and Alex, who staged a wedding in order to give us all an excuse to escape!

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David ‘F**K IT’ Choe

I never write blog posts. I don’t even read them – and I can tell you someone else who won’t be reading this.
David Choe.

He won’t be reading this, because most of all he doesn’t care. That’s the most amazing thing about him. He doesn’t care at all. I don’t even think he cares that his .25 % of facebook stock he received for a painting at their original offices in California will make him around 200 million dollars.

The important thing about Choe is that he’s interesting. He’s a really talented artist, but he paints really quickly, in a dirty, wild manner. I imagine its more fun to watch in process than it looks good.

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Tom Hanks Rap. YES.

In this internet era, there are many things that get passed about – especially videos. And when it comes to videos, there’s literally everything you can imagine: pandas sneezing, people getting hurt, people doing really weird things with their faces, people ranting, etc.. etc… But the undisputed king of viral videos HAS to be old celebrity videos.

For some reason the video below has yet to do major footwork around the internet, but holy crap – is it deserving of some SERIOUS air time. It’s Tom Hanks and Dan Akroyd, from the movie Dragnet, performing a rap about how they’re policemen and how badly they wanna lock up these bad guys.

I mean, i don’t think much needs to be said here. this literally speaks for itself (notice how long the verses are!). Tom Hanks Dan Akroyd rapping and dancing (btw this was choreographed by Paula fucking Abdul). Speechless.

Are You Gay?

I’ll be the first to admit it took me a really long time to get into Prince—I know, sacrilege. But come on, unless you grew up listening to him, it can be pretty hard to find an entry point into his massive discography. I mean, where would you even START?! I dare you to google “the best prince song” and find a consensus.

But this little joint, Uptown… IT’S FIRE! Granted I’m pretty biased because the wonderful boys behind Only Children put out an incredible rework/beef-up of this tune, and that’s really when I first realized “HOLY CRAP Prince is amazing”. Between his voice, cunning lyrics and light-years ahead of it’s time musicality… shit, I mean, what more can I say? Early lyrics in this song say “She said, ‘Are you gay?’ Kinda took me by surprise, I didn’t know what to do. I just looked her in her eyes, And I said, ‘No, are you?’” I MEAN COME ON PEOPLE! THIS DUDE IS INCREDIBLE.

And after watching copious amounts of live footage, I can really only say… Hail to the King: Prince.

Lightweight Stacey

There are many, MANY, Content Management System (or CMS) websites/applications out there. From the ubiquitous WordPress, to the artsy Cargo Collective, to the user-friendly Cushy CMS and the business-geared Shopify. All of these services provide something that, just a few years ago, was out of reach for most people: easy website building.

As the blog model became a bigger and bigger influence over our daily lives & national culture (remember Livejournal?), “normal” people started picking up the publication mantle and began creating their own “blogs”. For years, most people put a distinction between a blog and a website – although in all technical senses the two are identical. But as our media culture became saturated with blogger celebs like Perez Hilton, we stopped seeing the difference and early adopters began modding their blogs to the hills and back. Eventually WordPress opened up their template system, allowed for multiple page themes, and ka-boom—here we are.

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You’re My Star

SBTRKT’s album was by far my favorite album of 2011, and even though there are plenty of great remixes of tunes off the album, none really stood out as adding something that was missing, or doing it better than the original.

But then i saw this acoustic cover version, and…. wow. WOW i tell you!

P-I-Z-Z-A

It takes a lot to creep us out, (especially via YouTube, where the plethora of creepiness is overly well documented) but we have to admit that this video pulled it off.

A slowed down Olsen twins song from the 90s adds just the right amount of creepy fanaticism. It also seems like a much more honest portrait of these children. They build a pizza with every topping (un)imaginable. The slowed down version puts a gleam in their eye that’s both revolting and reminiscent of those Charlie Manson interviews.

Thank god for the Internet, right? Enjoy.

Have a Hip-House Christmas

Happy Holiday’s everyone! It’s been awhile since our last post – between battering work and family/friends time (plus a business trip or two), we’ve been slammed! Every year it’s the same and thats why to us, it’s the most wonderful time of the year!

Our gears have been turning, and we’ve been churning out a lot of great stuff that we’ll be sharing with you all very soon. A ton of great work for some really amazing clients, plus a couple new Humble Giants projects (stay tuned if you like music!). As you can tell, we’re really excited about it all. 2012 is shaping up to be one hell of a year for our team, and we can’t wait to share it with you guys as we go & grow.

But in the meantime, our buddy Nathan Martin (DJ N8) put out an exquisite DJ Mix. Featuring some amazing mixing and an impeccable track list, this mix embodies a good DJ mix. We’re not surprised at the quality, and neither should you.

Enjoy it here, download it here – and have a wonderful holiday!

The Art of Fli… WHOA.

Every now and then a video comes out that completely redefines action sports videos. A few years ago, Yeah, Right! did this for skateboarding videos. By taking everything to the next level (both in filming, editing, locations and skating), Yeah, Right! raised skateboarding to a higher plane than just “Those damn skateboarders!”.

And now, in 2011, a new video came out that attempts to do the same for snowboarding. The Art of Flight is a next-level adventure that dares you to forget it. From the website:

A new breed of action sports film comes to life as Red Bull Media House, in association with Brain Farm Digital Cinema, present “The Art of FLIGHT,” a Curt Morgan film. Equal parts action and adventure mix with the inevitable drama encountered along the way. Two years in the making, “The Art of FLIGHT” gives iconic snowboarder Travis Rice and friends the opportunity to redefine what is possible in the mountains. Experience the highs, as new tricks are landed and new zones opened, alongside the lows, where avalanches, accidents and wrong-turns strike. For the first time, viewers are immersed in the sometimes successful, often trying quest to open up new, unexplored mountains in remote corners of the world.

Couldn’t have said it better myself. But I probably could have said it shorter by saying: “holy crap that looks amazing!”.

Green Lantern

Great little advertising video for the movie Green Lantern, brought to you by Lorem, São Paulo. This awesome idea shows off the best of guerilla advertising. They found a group to latch onto, promote through them—without any effort to the bikers—and attract an audience.

I can just imagine the excitement of riding on one of these, knowing everyones looking at you wondering whats going on. And the excitement being on the ground as one of these zooms by. At the very least it’d prompt me to do some research and find out why these green LEDs, why the messages?

Advertisers and AD Agencies always want to focus on drive, CTA (call to action), and turn-over. Sometimes this focus leads us/them down the wrong path – to a self-serving agenda. Companies whose sole goal is to make you buy, watch, participate in something that gives nothing back, are easily pin-pointed by consumers.

As capitalism/consumerism grows in this country, and all around the world, consumers are wising up. Long gone are the days when a pimple cream advert could tell you it would get you all the girls. Long gone are the ways of advertising that made you want the physical product, the hunk of plastic, and not the experience or benefit of owning it. As advertisers try and stick to these old ideals, they fall out of favor with their audiences.

But, as brands and companies begin to experiment with advertising – creating EVENTS, moments, memories and connections, they gain something much more important than a one-time customer: they create an interested, vested and loyal fan base.

Reel to Reel Mixtape?

The man, Rex the Dog, is killing it again. Coming back to the UK with a hard night of dancing called, BREED, Rex has been putting out mixtapes as promotion for the nights. This is the 3rd of Three mixes he’s doing for BREED 2.

But this time, Rex stepped up and stepped up big! Recording this entire mix using the technology of a Reel to Reel tape machine. Yeah, let that sit in your mind for a second. HE USES ANALOG REEL TO REEL TO MAKE A MIXTAPE!

I really shouldn’t have to say more than the video above. And if you want to cop the whole mix (which is amazingly polished for how analog and vintage it sounds) you can do so below.

Analog just refuses to die. And in a time when everyone is a DJ or Designer, or Developer – physical hand work may be the only thing to set the Best apart from the Rest.

See & Hear it after the jump

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Steve Jobs Resigns

Whoa! via Wall Street Journal.