Friday, November 20, 2009

360° Video of the Day: YEASAYER "Ambling Alp" will Freak You Out!

UPDATE: Yeasayer "Ambling Alp" Video

So that was the "standard" video. The rest of the post below is about the 360 degree video that was produced to coincide with this video release. This marks the first official use of 360 degree video as part of the transmedia package for a property. Congrats to Bill Meikle and Kirby McClure/Radical Friend for an excellent collaboration.

CLICK HERE for an EXTRAORDINARY EXPERIENCE, but/and/or it does Contain Nudity

YEASAYER's 360° video teaser for the new album, "Ambling Alp", is an intoxicating trip into new territory for the medium.

This online experience matches Yeasayer's experimental, subconscious-tapping music as it takes you through a series of five scenes in which you are among a group of naked people. The user will quickly learn that by simply rolling the mouse over the circular video frame that there is more to see. Clicking the image will load the next video scene, transporting the user into another dream-like scenario in a deliberate effort to disorient and add to the compelling nature of the interface design.

The user wants to figure this out.
In the meantime, the audio/visuals sink in.

Riding a black horse through black volcanic tuff

Running to the Silver Fist

Close Around in a Mirrored Room

Hands Out Stretched

Lying Down

Hopefully, you've had the experience now. If not, go to right now and spend some time exploring the scenes, let the music effect you...

Ok? Now we can talk about it. I don't know about you, but I think this is going to give me strange dreams tonight. No, it's not the nudity, although I am rather proud of this new 360° video medium for it's first public nudity being of the artistic variety. There has always been speculation that it would go the other way. It's just so trippy and a big part of that is the user interface.

I can't get over the idea of using deliberate disorientation to drive the experience. Genius! Absolute genius, in my humble opinion.

Congrats to Yeasayer and all who were a part of this project's creation. Bill Meikle's 360° video imagery, shot with the Point Grey Research Ladybug 2 camera is exceptional for this piece. The effects usage to irregularly warp the image periodically lends to digital dream-like quality and the graphic design of the loading images also deserve real credit.

Although, this has already been tagged with a warning at, I think the public will quickly get over their puritanical impulses and accept this for what it is, really good art.

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