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This is The Song That Never Ends...
November 13, 2012 12:11 PM   Subscribe

Ever wished your favorite song could be extended infinitely? Well, today's your day. Behold: The Infinite Jukebox.

Created by Paul Lamare at MIT's most recent Music Hack Day.

Upload a song yourself! Or choose from a lengthy list of previously loaded tracks.

Doesn't seem to work in Firefox. Does in Chrome though.

[via]
posted by SomaSoda (137 comments total) 64 users marked this as a favorite

 
Hrm. That last link goes to a specific track, Orb's Little Fluffy Clouds.

Click on New Song to get the list of available tracks. Doesn't seem to be a way to link directly there, that I can figure. Perhaps if someone figures it out, a mod could change the link?
posted by SomaSoda at 12:15 PM on November 13, 2012


I can literally only imagine this being used for nefarious purposes.
posted by 2bucksplus at 12:17 PM on November 13, 2012 [3 favorites]


I'm not sure what this thing is yet, but it is definitely invented for people whose favorite song is "Sabotage" -- because that it just fun as shit.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 12:18 PM on November 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


Seems like this would go really well with the Santana thread below...
posted by kmz at 12:19 PM on November 13, 2012 [4 favorites]


Help:

Are there any ways to control the song? Yes - here are some keys:
[space] - Start and stop playing the song
[left arrow] - Decrement the current play velocity by one
[right arrow] - Increment the current play velocity by one
[Down arrow] - Sets the current play velocity to zero
[control] - freeze on the current beat
[shift] - bounce between the current beat and all of the similar sounding beats. These are the branch points.

posted by MCMikeNamara at 12:20 PM on November 13, 2012


Thank god, because Chocolate Rain just isn't relentless enough!
posted by The 10th Regiment of Foot at 12:27 PM on November 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


people whose favorite song is "Sabotage"

There are other kinds of people?
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 12:27 PM on November 13, 2012 [9 favorites]


Boo, I tried to upload a track and it just sits there saying analyzing audio.
posted by wierdo at 12:29 PM on November 13, 2012


Also, just realized I've been listening to Blue Rondo A La Turk for about the last 15 minutes.
posted by SomaSoda at 12:29 PM on November 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


Seems like this would go really well with the Santana thread below...

DON'T YOU FREAKIN' DARE.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 12:32 PM on November 13, 2012 [4 favorites]


I always wished 4'33" were longer.
posted by perhapses at 12:32 PM on November 13, 2012 [8 favorites]


Chocolate Rain (I'm sorry)
posted by rmannion at 12:33 PM on November 13, 2012 [3 favorites]


people whose favorite song is "Sabotage"

There are other kinds of people?


Since I've just spent the last 10 minutes listening to the first 20 seconds over and over, I'm not sure I can accurately answer that question.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 12:33 PM on November 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


It won't work in Firefox as Firefox doesn't support the Web Audio API. Only WebKit implements that right now.

(Can you fix the tags? The last name is "Lamere")
posted by mkb at 12:37 PM on November 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


Just tried it with Daft Punk's Around the World and I can report no perceptible difference to the original song.
posted by gauche at 12:37 PM on November 13, 2012 [3 favorites]


The 70s Batman is awesome on infinite play. It does not look as complicated as Sabotage for instance but is far more entertaining.
posted by hariya at 12:38 PM on November 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


non-stop nyan cat
posted by AaronRaphael at 12:40 PM on November 13, 2012


Looking forward to giving this a try with Neu's Hallogallo.
posted by ryanshepard at 12:42 PM on November 13, 2012


Excellent. Once I download Chrome, I can listen to "Smooth" all day long, just like I did when I used to listen to the radio in 1999.
posted by Joey Michaels at 12:42 PM on November 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


When this kiss is over
We'll start again
It won't be any different
It'll be exactly the same

posted by Nomyte at 12:42 PM on November 13, 2012 [4 favorites]


This is interesting just to see the structures of the songs visualized.
posted by Jpfed at 12:43 PM on November 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


All the works of Jean-Jacques Perrey play flawlessly.
posted by TwelveTwo at 12:43 PM on November 13, 2012


I am the target market for this service; after playing "Robots" by Dan Mangan on repeat all the way into work this morning (and will likely play it all the way home too).
posted by arcticseal at 12:43 PM on November 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


Hooray for technology! Gone are the days when my high school buddy had to manually create a 2-sided 90 minute cassette tape on which every track was "The Sun Always Shines On TV" by A-Ha. He listened to that thing all the frickin' time.
posted by freecellwizard at 12:44 PM on November 13, 2012


i've always liked Short on Posters by GBV but dang it's like 90 seconds so i usually listen to it 3 times in a row anyways.
posted by sio42 at 12:46 PM on November 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


Will it work with What's New Pussycat?
posted by ceribus peribus at 12:47 PM on November 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


Nevermind, only a few works of Jean-Jacques Perrey play well. Baroque Hoedown completely falls apart.
posted by TwelveTwo at 12:47 PM on November 13, 2012


non-stop nyan cat

My god! That is totally going on the list of what SWATs play when trying to break a hostage situation!
posted by The 10th Regiment of Foot at 12:49 PM on November 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


O my god! IT'S A MIRAGE!

I'M TELLIN' ALL Y'ALL

and so forth, yeah decent tune I guess.
posted by Mister_A at 12:49 PM on November 13, 2012


This one works pretty well.
posted by wierdo at 12:49 PM on November 13, 2012


Does it include Closer to Fine by the Indigo Girls?
posted by jacquilynne at 12:50 PM on November 13, 2012 [3 favorites]


Gothic Love Song by Current 93 is glitchy, but it works. I'll send it to Tibet and have it be ignored.

Of course, the inevitable had to be done: 4'33" (for piano)... and I received this error message "Sorry, can't make an infinite version of the song, it is too varied". 'Varied' is an interesting reason that it won't work.
posted by item at 12:50 PM on November 13, 2012


Gone are the days when my high school buddy had to manually create a 2-sided 90 minute cassette tape on which every track was "The Sun Always Shines On TV" by A-Ha.

Heh; my own high school buddy once got into trouble with the neighbors when she programmed her stereo to play "Solsbury Hill" 63 times in a row.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 12:52 PM on November 13, 2012


Uh, the Melvins already go on infinitely.
posted by I love you more when I eat paint chips at 12:54 PM on November 13, 2012




That is perfect! Chug-A-Lug by Roger Miller. I no longer need to chug anything! Song is pre-drunkened!
posted by Ad hominem at 12:59 PM on November 13, 2012


I really need to make an 8 hour long mp3 of my above Negativland link. I'll never have to make another holiday playlist again!
posted by item at 1:00 PM on November 13, 2012


I've been Rickrolling for the past hour.

On an unrelated topic. Here's a link to some hot sexxxx pics.
posted by hot_monster at 1:07 PM on November 13, 2012


99 Toys is also interesting, what with having lyrics at many of the jump points. It's surprising how it manages to usually stay pretty coherent.
posted by wierdo at 1:08 PM on November 13, 2012


I just learned that when you open the same one of these tracks in 8 windows and turn it up really loud your cats will run out of the room in search of what are probably firearms.
posted by item at 1:09 PM on November 13, 2012


The 70s Batman is awesome on infinite play. It does not look as complicated as Sabotage for instance but is far more entertaining.

For anyone old enough to remember the theme song from having watched the show, they will be old enough to understand that this sounds exactly like playing a heavily scratched LP on a record player.
posted by BigHeartedGuy at 1:17 PM on November 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


I can't believe some douche put up She's So Heavy. It's bad enough the ending is FOREVER and then someone finally kicks out the plug.

What we need is Ono/Lennon #9 and find ourselves a window to jump out of.
posted by stormpooper at 1:22 PM on November 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


Whyyy oh whyyy does it not work consistently on songs I upload? On the bright side, Scatman is about perfect for this.
posted by wierdo at 1:22 PM on November 13, 2012


The HampsterDance by Hampton the Hampster has currently been playing for...29 minutes.
posted by awesomelyglorious at 1:28 PM on November 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


This is so AWESOME!
I uploaded Thirteen by Big Star...and it just perfect.
posted by ShawnString at 1:32 PM on November 13, 2012


Karma Police is pretty great.
posted by jjwiseman at 1:33 PM on November 13, 2012


I'm just going to upload Santana's Smooth and watch The Whelk's head explode.
posted by Jofus at 1:37 PM on November 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


Needs more GG Allin or "Metal Machine Music."
posted by AJaffe at 1:45 PM on November 13, 2012


Behold, the infinite: REE BABA REE BABA by Sonic Omi! Remarkably difficult to tell from the original!
posted by JHarris at 1:46 PM on November 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


I wish I could take credit for uploading Little Fluffy Clouds, but I can't.

Wow, Derezzed is pretty awesome, too...
posted by the painkiller at 1:47 PM on November 13, 2012


Behold, the infinite: REE BABA REE BABA by Sonic Omi!

I haven't even listened to it and I have already favorited it because I know already that it will be THE ABSOLUTE SHIZZNIT
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 1:48 PM on November 13, 2012


Oh hell yes. Man, I need to get back to playing with Remix.
posted by cortex at 1:49 PM on November 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


Please tell me there is some way to sneak this into some poor sap's personal playlist. They will never know what hit them.

Bwa Ha Ha Ha
posted by arkham_inmate_0801 at 1:51 PM on November 13, 2012


Ladies and gentlemen, I give you Savage Garden.
posted by wierdo at 1:52 PM on November 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


Infinite Mahna Mahna
posted by Strass at 1:54 PM on November 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


Pretty fun version of Kick Out the Jams covered here by The Presidents of the United States
posted by arkham_inmate_0801 at 2:00 PM on November 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


Mahna Mahna got stuck in an endless loop of just a few notes when I tried it.
posted by not that girl at 2:03 PM on November 13, 2012


Ode to an Infinitely Buttered Cat is one bizarre Burroughsian cut-up experience.
posted by cortex at 2:03 PM on November 13, 2012


I've said before that I could listen to Billy Preston's Outta Space endlessly, and now I can.
posted by usonian at 2:04 PM on November 13, 2012


Ladies and gentlemen, please raise a bottomless glass to Infinite Barrett's Privateers Oh god it's like being stuck in a Halifax bar forever
posted by oulipian at 2:06 PM on November 13, 2012 [3 favorites]


I'm really enjoying but not quite understanding this. Can I get spoilers? I made some segments small by clicking on them. Halp!
posted by Iteki at 2:14 PM on November 13, 2012


Regulators! Mount up!
posted by wierdo at 2:17 PM on November 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


Infinite Mahna Mahna

I love you.
posted by jacquilynne at 2:18 PM on November 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


I fed it You Never Give Me Your Money because I wanted to see how it'd handle something that doesn't exactly repeat itself too much. It still mostly worked.


http://labs.echonest.com/Uploader/index.html?trid=TRSEMSB13AFBD6B01E

This is almost as great as that time echonest made a script to give everything a swing beat and fed it Don't Stop Believing.
posted by sandswipe at 2:21 PM on November 13, 2012


God help me, I've been stuck in a tight "You know it's true / everything I do" loop for a solid minute now.
posted by cortex at 2:23 PM on November 13, 2012 [3 favorites]


I'm Too Sexy is slighty too repetitious in that it has to pause too many times to catch all the hooks where it repeats, but it is funny when it says Right Said Fred goes into this Rainmanesque "I'm too sexy for my cat" riff...
posted by Nanukthedog at 2:30 PM on November 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


Burroughs, you say, cortex? Behold, Seven Souls, (Tim Simenon Mix) by Material.
posted by Purposeful Grimace at 2:43 PM on November 13, 2012


The HampsterDance by Hampton the Hampster has currently been playing for...29 minutes.

[roughly 48 hours later, queue police chief making statement] "In my 38 years on the force, it was without doubt the grizzliest murder scene I've ever come across."
posted by BigHeartedGuy at 2:47 PM on November 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


What do I win?

(I'm really sorry)
posted by donpardo at 2:47 PM on November 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


My friend plugged in Birdhouse in your Soul, works pretty well.
posted by borkencode at 2:50 PM on November 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


My biggest complaint about 'Come on Eileen' is that it never lasted long enough...
posted by Nanukthedog at 2:52 PM on November 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


Benny Goodman "Sing, Sing, Sing"
posted by JT at 2:56 PM on November 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


I plugged in my collab with IanK's acoustic cover of All The Small Things and it's actually shockingly workable as a long lazy meditative singalong cutup.
posted by cortex at 3:11 PM on November 13, 2012


I am the target market for this service; after playing "Robots" by Dan Mangan on repeat all the way into work this morning (and will likely play it all the way home too).

I tried; it winds up playing line 90% outro, so if you like that, you're golden.

The one that I liked was Canada by The Thermals, which started out as a pretty concentrated-to-the-essentials power pop song, so Infinite Jukeboxing it means it's pretty well entirely "Whoa whoa whoa".
posted by Homeboy Trouble at 3:13 PM on November 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


Birdhouse in Your Soul is surprisingly good. Very seamless jumping around in the song.
posted by ob1quixote at 3:36 PM on November 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


"I Feel Fantastic"

If I had this in my car I'd never stop driving.
posted by Room 641-A at 4:37 PM on November 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


I'm so tempted to upload the NSFW hallelujah to see what happens, but I can't find my local copy.

I have, however, just discovered that I have a folder containing nothing by muppet show mashups and remixes...
posted by sodium lights the horizon at 4:47 PM on November 13, 2012


This is quite possibly the only way Time by Pink Floyd could be ANY better....


God I love Metafilter.......
posted by Lipstick Thespian at 4:51 PM on November 13, 2012


Appropriately enough, considering the origins, doing this with I Zimbra works really, really well.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 5:03 PM on November 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


My new excuse is "As soon as this song is over."
posted by Room 641-A at 5:05 PM on November 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


SIX PACK!
Does not work that well...
posted by SageLeVoid at 5:20 PM on November 13, 2012


Oh man, Moondog would have loved this...
posted by 1f2frfbf at 5:27 PM on November 13, 2012 [2 favorites]


This is the software realization of the inside of my brain.
posted by googly at 6:36 PM on November 13, 2012 [3 favorites]


I just put in Lard's "Time to Melt" and it was actually shortened.
posted by danherwig at 6:53 PM on November 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


wow! take the absurdly long vocal ending of My Pink Half of the Drainpipe and make it betterer and betterer and betterer forever!
My Pink Half of the Drainpipe - Bonzo Dog Doodah Band
posted by Golem XIV at 7:57 PM on November 13, 2012


...and now you're older still.
posted by erniepan at 8:55 PM on November 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


This is awesome awesome awesome. I love this kind of procedural shit.
posted by threeants at 10:12 PM on November 13, 2012


It works, of course, terrifically with pop songs. I would love to just play this version of Call Me Maybe or Somebody I Used To Know in the background somewhere and see how long it takes people to catch on.
posted by threeants at 10:16 PM on November 13, 2012


Mine appears to be stuck on "Calculating pathways through the song ..." -anyone else?
posted by en forme de poire at 10:19 PM on November 13, 2012


This is just to say...
Forgive me
they were delicious
posted by oulipian at 10:56 PM on November 13, 2012


Man, I've been playing with this thing for two hours now. So far my best result has been Baianá by Barbatuques.
posted by Darken Skye at 11:05 PM on November 13, 2012


Infinite Mr Blue Sky - Sahara desert version
posted by rongorongo at 12:15 AM on November 14, 2012


Eternal Flame was a bit of a letdown, given the name. But I like the now somewhat incoherent infinite David Duchovny!
posted by Skybly at 1:25 AM on November 14, 2012


Trapped in a loop
of "you didnt need to stoop
so low".
posted by KMB at 1:28 AM on November 14, 2012


I'm loving Sorry for I Mashed You but I think I'm starting to go mad around the 15 minute mark.

It looks like it refuses to finish a song and always takes the last jump every time. This is definitely a BadThing when you find a track where the last loop is only a few seconds long...
posted by sodium lights the horizon at 2:20 AM on November 14, 2012


But when I finally become dictator of the world, Paper Planes is definitely going to be a part of my brainwashing re-education program.
posted by sodium lights the horizon at 3:00 AM on November 14, 2012


Or this... Gay Bar Muppets
posted by sodium lights the horizon at 3:12 AM on November 14, 2012


Karma Police is pretty great.

I've spent upwards of 5 minutes just listening to slightly different versions of the coda, and it's passed through annoying and gone into--my God, how have I never heard the orchestral parts underneath the synth and vocals before?
posted by kagredon at 3:16 AM on November 14, 2012


Darn it all, I try to upload anything and it analyzes the audio forever.

I have so many mp3s.
posted by KChasm at 3:17 AM on November 14, 2012


Pretty much all you need for the Xmas season: Jingle Rock Bell
posted by Hlewagast at 5:21 AM on November 14, 2012 [1 favorite]


Karma Police is pretty great.

I've spent upwards of 5 minutes just listening to slightly different versions of the coda, and it's passed through annoying and gone into--my God, how have I never heard the orchestral parts underneath the synth and vocals before?


I'm stuck on a constant "For a minute there, I lost myself, I lost myself" loop. It's been 20 minutes...I was cooking.

This is exactly the same thing my brain does when it's playing a song and I'm not paying attention and suddenly I realize I've been humming something like "raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens, raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens" for an hour.
posted by nile_red at 5:56 AM on November 14, 2012 [1 favorite]


Someone do the Allman Brothers' "Jessica"! I only had it on .wma format!
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 6:00 AM on November 14, 2012


I had a theory that Don't Come Around Here No More would be perfect, and I was right. I need to try some more Heartbreakers stuff. American Girl would probably loop for a couple hours without breaking a sweat.
posted by cortex at 6:42 AM on November 14, 2012 [1 favorite]


I think we might have killed it.

That or it's still trying to build a tree of the 11 minutes of tubular bells my colleague tried to feed it 4 hours ago...
posted by sodium lights the horizon at 8:15 AM on November 14, 2012


It's out, hopefully temporarily...
posted by nile_red at 8:42 AM on November 14, 2012


I really wish this was an iPhone app.
posted by RikiTikiTavi at 9:09 AM on November 14, 2012 [1 favorite]


Now every song you pick is "Call Me Maybe." This is why we can't have nice things.
posted by leotrotsky at 9:44 AM on November 14, 2012


That or it's still trying to build a tree of the 11 minutes of tubular bells my colleague tried to feed it 4 hours ago...

I think there is an upper limit to the length of the song it will accept. I know it wouldn't take my 15 minute long 1812 Overture track that I tried last night.
posted by Darken Skye at 10:23 AM on November 14, 2012


Half the fun of this is the surprise of what other people are uploading.
posted by Room 641-A at 11:18 AM on November 14, 2012 [2 favorites]


More scalable backend approaching.
posted by mkb at 12:05 PM on November 14, 2012


It seems like the chance of looping back goes up a lot if there's 3(?) or fewer paths back, I've been at a melody softly soaring through my atmosphere for 10-odd minutes. I guess that looping back around to the beginning would break the illusion of continuity, though.
posted by kagredon at 12:27 PM on November 14, 2012


Mom was right! You need more Vege-Tables.
posted by 1f2frfbf at 3:47 PM on November 14, 2012


"Birdhouse in Your Soul" is surprisingly good. Very seamless jumping around in the song.

Same with Ana Ng.* Something about early TMBG, I guess.

bonus: the "everything sticks like a broken record" line can loop back on itself.
posted by kagredon at 8:00 PM on November 14, 2012 [1 favorite]


Huh, given how this works... if you had a large enough database couldn't you build a musical Markov chain generator? It would probably sound like the internet trying to sing but it would be fascinating.
posted by TwelveTwo at 10:21 AM on November 15, 2012


TwelveTwo: "Huh, given how this works... if you had a large enough database couldn't you build a musical Markov chain generator? It would probably sound like the internet trying to sing but it would be fascinating."

Yes, I made one that sounded disastrous. The same weekend that resulted in this page also resulted in an automatic chiptune cover creator (that used two DOS emulators to run NES assemblers)
posted by mkb at 10:34 AM on November 15, 2012


You absolutely could, though it'd take a lot of work to find a way to make it (a) have enough transition points to be interesting but (b) have transitions that aren't just wildly jarring to boot. A really naive implementation of this would be to just feed the existing tool a thousand-hour-long mp3 that was the concatenation of a gigantic collection of songs and let it work on that, but practically speaking that's not gonna happen.

Part of what's neat about how the underlying Echo Nest analysis works is it breaks down input into varyingly granular elements, from beat/measure structural units all the way down to basically wavelet profiling of individual sound impulse samples in the recording (e.g. a snare hit or a guitar strum attack), and then creates a metadata skeleton of the recording from that. You end up with a bunch of sort of parametric sketches of moments in a song—instead of literally the ones and zeros that make up a given tiny audio sample, you get a description of the timbre and volume and pitch content of that sample. Which is great because you can then computationally make comparison between samples that sound "like" each other in various ways rather than just checking for bit-for-bit similarity.

So what you'd want to do is build a markov-style chaining engine that focused on those sample profiles that Echo Nest creates; instead of looking for "words that come after 'in the'", you're looking for sound-alike samples that come after say a brassy major third in Bb or whatever.

The trick with cohesiveness though is that we listen to music differently than we read text—there's a lot more raw information processing going on per second when listening to a song than when reading text, and the experience of something going "wrong" with a piece of music is much more immediate and viscerally jarring than a sentence that takes a weird turn. So with a markov text thing you might get a sort of slow-breaking "ha ha WHAT" feeling when you get a few words into a bizarre non-sequitur change of direction, but with music I think you'd be likely to have much more of a (almost literal) record-scratching feeling when the beat or key or tone just suddenly changed inelegantly and repeatedly.

So finding a way to weight the relationships between one song and another across a sample-similarity transition point would probably be the hard work, once you've figured out how to organize and sift through the data in the first place.
posted by cortex at 10:42 AM on November 15, 2012 [8 favorites]


And I should note that some of this "large enough database" stuff is actually something Echo Nest has done, in terms of storing and making available via an API the structural metadata that the analysis process yields, so you could in principle do a lot of this calculation work right now just by interfacing with their data. But as far as I know there's no way to actually pull down the original corresponding music file samples via the API, so you'd still need to source all that music yourself somehow.

One of these days I should see if I can do a batch analysis of my entire personal mp3 library, because that would facilitate some real monster hobby projects.
posted by cortex at 10:45 AM on November 15, 2012 [5 favorites]


Another tricky thing with cohesiveness is that the grammar of music differs significantly from the grammar of verbal language, particularly in how context plays into things. With the exception of specific poetic/rhetorical tics, for example, we don't see a lot of structural repetition in language on a sentence-by-sentence basis; prose tends to be very irregular, very unpredictable in the distribution of its beats and phonetic content at the local scale, and the biggest structural features are embedding and conjuctions rather than repeating metric forms. Whereas with almost all music meter and harmonic repetition are really, really central aspects of song construction and are part of what we expect and rely upon as listeners to feel like we can follow what we're hearing.

That happens at both macro and micro levels. At the macro level we recognize when the verse moves into the chorus and then back and forth a couple more times, or when a chorus hook repeats, and that's part of the experience of the song. Repeating parts of the song helps us engage with the song; the second time we hear the chorus for a catchy new song we've just learned it a bit from the first chorus and we can mentally participate with the restatement of that hook. Drilling down a bit, we get melodic structures that repeat or slightly tweak the same few measures two or three times in a single verse or chorus. Prose might do stuff a little bit as a rhetorical flourish—certainly a moving speech might touch back on a theme or a key line to recapitulate or emphasize a point—but it's not nearly as obvious as with song writing.

And at the micro level, meter is everything; drums and other percussive elements cut measures up into equidistant beats and sub-beats and establish the baseline that everything else registers against. We clap our hands, we tap our feet. Even when the beat drops, we know its still there and that's why that works. So this constant sense of steady pulsing is there, in a way that it's not in prose. It's that very very steady sense of heartbeat.

A markov process that ignored the macro level would probably not be a big problem—the constant sense of change and unpredictability about where a song is going in the long term can be pretty engaging in its own right (and look at e.g. Girl Talk which tends to feature a carefully orchestrated take on this, with a change of some sort in what the song is made of / sampling every 8 or 16 bars). But a process that ignored this on the micro level would probably be super unpalatable to most listeners, because if the sense of the beat/measure consistency goes away then you've got no anchor for what you're hearing, nothing you can rely on to help keep you in the groove while you weather the macro-level unpredictability.

Note that Infinite Jukebox pointedly makes transitions on the measure barrier rather than at beat or sub-beat levels; that's part of why it works so well as a listening experience even though it's fucking with the macro structure of the song. And even at that it can be fairly jarring for songs where there's jump points from one distinct area of a verse or chorus to a different point. A move from the second bar of a verse stanza to the second bar of a different stanza can feel really normal but funny because the lyrics are in the wrong place, but a jump from the second bar of a stanza to the fifth bar of a stanza can feel really really wrong because that ends up not being the right chord; our sense of the way that any given eight measures of a verse are supposed to flow gets disrupted significantly. (Again, Girl Talk mostly makes its moves on the 8 or 16 bar point; feels more like a DJ comping together a medley than it does like a DJ randomly switching songs because he's having a seizure.)

So, yeah. That's part of the problem to consider how to solve for a listenable auto-markov jukebox machine.
posted by cortex at 11:08 AM on November 15, 2012 [6 favorites]


Marked as Best Answer
posted by TwelveTwo at 4:33 PM on November 15, 2012 [2 favorites]


Back on topic, though, Say It Ain't So seems to really really not want to leave the bridge for more than a few bars, and has a couple times looped tightly on the new cutup lyric "This bottle / found Jesus / things are good / or so I hear / this bottle / found Jesus...".

Also I cannot for the life of me get Every Breath You Take to work. Whether this is because of very bad luck every time I upload it or if it is actually the poison killing IJ on the back end I don't know, but I'm going to stop trying.
posted by cortex at 9:06 AM on November 16, 2012


Other finds:

- My Humps is actually really boring, in terms of jumps. Not even and endless "my humps my hump my humps" cycle or anything. Though it got stuck for a while in the outro that I had forgotten about entirely.

- Cake's version of I Will Survive is actually really fantastic; the jumps are really aggressively dissociative but flow okay musically, leaping from random bit of guitar solo to another unrelated one and stuff.

- Cranberries Zombie is really straightforward in the verses and choruses (though it tends to jump between different iterations of them at similar points) but gets a bit weirder with the changes during instrumental pieces in between the lyrics.

- Bad Moon Rising is just amazing. The verse that never ends and which includes the phrase "I know the end is coming soon" followed by not-a-chorus sends some serious jolts into the part of my brain that thinks it knows this song. So many jump points, it looks like a dreamcatcher. Like a drunk dude at an open mic trying to fill fifteen minutes with the one two-minute long song he knows.
posted by cortex at 10:39 AM on November 16, 2012 [1 favorite]


- Changes is full of jarring weirdness. Changes indeed, David.

- Art Alexakis wants to buy you the hell out of a new life and would like you to please let him stay the night, please let him stay the night, please let him stay the night. This is one of those songs that seems really prone to getting stuck in the outro in a way that is extra conspicuous because there's a long fadeout at the end. Volume keeps faaaading LOUD AGAIN, repeat.
posted by cortex at 11:57 AM on November 16, 2012


cortex: Cake's version of I Will Survive is actually really fantastic; the jumps are really aggressively dissociative but flow okay musically, leaping from random bit of guitar solo to another unrelated one and stuff.
Why no, I didn't just listen to this for half an hour. Why do you ask?
posted by ob1quixote at 12:56 PM on November 16, 2012 [1 favorite]


Wow -- between the success of Zombie, Sabotage and I Will Survive I think there's something about the Infinite Jukebox and the types of songs I listened too way too many times in college. I wish I knew enough about music to figure out what it was.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 2:50 PM on November 16, 2012


I want a gstreamer module that does this.
posted by jjwiseman at 2:27 PM on November 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


This just dies for me on Chrome after 100% loading. Is anybody else having the same problem?
posted by solarion at 2:37 PM on November 19, 2012


Okay, scratch that. I think the site's just under heavy load from this link. I will wait.
posted by solarion at 2:43 PM on November 19, 2012


This is the first one that I've been able to listen too for longer than the original song. It's really good:
Animal by Miike Snow
posted by xorry at 7:01 PM on November 19, 2012


Turns out that LCD Soundsystem's On Repeat can just groove for pretty much ever.
posted by cortex at 11:14 AM on November 21, 2012 [1 favorite]


I'll just leave Hyuna's "Bubble Pop!" here.
posted by haveanicesummer at 11:35 AM on November 21, 2012


"House of Ballons / Glass Table Girls" by The Weeknd gets itself into some really interesting "Fun, fun, fun, fun fun funfunfunfunfun" loops. Most of the transitions seem to work fascinatingly as well. Haven't made it to the second half of the song ever though.
posted by haveanicesummer at 12:05 PM on November 21, 2012


Also groovy: Naked Eye.

Mazzy Star's Fade Into You is so naturally static and dreamy in its construction that I don't think someone unfamiliar with the track would even know anything is up until it was way too late.

Pink Floyd's One Of These Days is also on the thematic money.
posted by cortex at 2:19 PM on November 21, 2012


It needs an "Ok - wrap it up now guys!" button.
posted by rongorongo at 8:58 PM on November 21, 2012


It needs an "Ok - wrap it up now guys!" button.
posted by rongorongo


If you press 'h' it "brings it on home" which turns off infinite mode. Exactly what you're looking for!
posted by haveanicesummer at 5:39 PM on November 22, 2012 [3 favorites]


"See I've already waited too long... Just like everybody else does"

The Smiths "How Soon is Now?" works beautifully, and has a huge number of connections.
posted by haveanicesummer at 9:35 AM on November 23, 2012


A friend pointed me to "Nur Ein Wort" and "Müssen Nur Wollen" by Wir Sind Helden. Personally I like the first one better than the second, but they both work well on the Infinite Jukebox.

Also the developer has added a new "tune" feature which allows you more control over whether or not branches are taken. Makes it very interesting.
posted by ob1quixote at 6:36 AM on November 28, 2012


Layla was made for this!
posted by barnacles at 9:44 PM on November 30, 2012 [1 favorite]


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