The New Yorker’s Jia Tolentino wrote an article recently about following a link on Twitter one day which led her to a YouTube remix of Toto’s “Africa” as though played in an empty shopping mall. The video itself is nothing more than a single frame of an empty shopping mall, in muted pink tones. Sounds a little odd, right? Wrong.
It turns out, the song is the perfect zen piece when remixed as though it is playing in a deserted shopping mall. The YouTube video has had more than 1 millions views, and it’s the comments that really show how much people are into this. Whether you feel like it’s the perfect “last man on earth” setting, or just get lost in the hollow and haunting harmonies, I guarantee you’ll watch this from beginning to end. You might even search out the original, just to listen to how different it sounds. Which version is better? You have to decide.
But YouTuber Cecil Robert hit on something, and started a whole series of videos with song remixed to sound like they’re playing in empty shopping malls. Is it that the original producers got it wrong? Not likely…the choices are carefully picked to evoke a particular mood, and while you can pay to have him remix a song you’d like to hear, it’s oddly satisfying to just put the ones he’s already done on loop and listen while you get your zen on.
Tolentino’s article is spot on. You should read all the way through it, as she explores the vibe behind empty shopping mall remixes. And make sure to take a listen. Put on some earphones if you want the full effect, and then sit back and relax.