MP3 Reverse Cowboys
posted by April 17 at 13:52 PMon
Gnarls Barkley has released their album The Odd Couple for free on the internet. Only it’s called elpuoC ddO ehT and it’s the entire album compressed into one thirty-something minute-long track, played backward.
I’ve listened to it, and, honestly, I kind of love it. I had no idea that backwards music could be so soothing. I think it helps that Gnarls Barkley don’t use a lot of guitars in their music; guitars sound really grating when they’re played backwards. But the beats on this album make a soft sucking sound—as in the sound of suction and not the sound of badness—and it’s trance-y and mellow for the majority of the album.
Parts of songs sound like calliope music, and Danger Mouse clearly uses backward samples, because occasionally, there’ll be the sound of something—a bird song or a sound effect, say—that goes forward while everything else is going backward. Those work like freaky little signposts, to remind the listener that the album is not being played in the proper direction. It’s actually pretty easy to forget. The most vibrant song on the album is “nuR,” the reverse of the current single “Run.” It’s fast and jerky and it sounds like a schoolyard fight between two large armies of children. There don’t seem to be any calls for the listener to commit suicide or surrender their lives to Satan, which is a little disappointing.