For part 2 of this series on “Perfect Albums”, I’ll be focusing on the work of one artist: Israeli DJ and video artist Ophir Kutiel, AKA Kutiman. Like any other DJ, Kutiman mixes sound samples to make music. What makes Kutiman different is where he gets his samples and what he does with them.
Kutiman works pretty much entirely with found video sources from YouTube. Yep, all those grainy, low-resolution video clips of wannabe singers, people demonstrating musical instruments for sale and school band rehearsals are the unlikely sows ears that Kutiman consistently turns into musical silk purses. Here’s an example:
Magical, isn’t it? It not only works as a video, but if you listen to it as just a song in audio format, the richness of the sound and how each sample blends and works together would fool you into thinking that this was a composed piece rather than a mashup of disparate video sources. Every Kutiman video mix is like this, and each works as well in audio-only as well as it does as a video mix.
Here’s another one where Kutiman traveled around his native Jerusalem, filming dozens of local musicians improvising on their instruments, then using the clips to compose a piece celebrating those musicians. It’s important to note that Kutiman offered these musicians no direction at all in what they played – he took what they gave him and went from there…
And now the Perfect Album by Kutiman, the project he’s best known for, free to view on Youtube: Thru You. Enjoy!