• Jacob Tashjian

Mashing up the old and hearing something new

Music, that weird art form everyone simultaneously loves and hates and cannot get enough of. It comes in a variety of forms, some music reflects current popular culture, others a past era long gone but somehow still present and with something new to discover. Then there is that weird middle ground of mash-ups, or when someone takes a song, grabs a certain part of it and mashes it together with other parts of a song or even multiple songs to create something new from entirely reused assets. It is not popular in the slightest, it takes classics and completely flips them on their heads, and they have no reason whatsoever to exist, but I am here today to show you that you should give them a chance with three of the best mash-ups on the internet today.


1. The End -Neil Cicierega

If you have been on the internet for a long time, chances are that you have come across Neil Cicierega in one way or another. His musical work is known far and wide for being insanely creative, taking seemingly unrelated topics and somehow making them work together in what can only be described as products that “just work.” Thus is the case with one of his most famous songs “The End,” a mash-up of Linkin Park’s 2002 hard rock hit “In the End” with the lighthearted pop instrumentals of The Doobie Brothers 1978 classic “What a Fool Believes” from his mash-up album 'Mouth Moods." The end product is a song that is depressing as it is uplifting. The up-beat synth of "What a Fool Believes" synergizing seamlessly with the cut-edge lyrics rapped by Mike Shinoda with Chester Bennington carrying the chorus creates a song that is totally distinct but tonally similar to both of the original songs.


Link to the original song: Neil Cicierega - The End


2. What Redbone would sound like if you used to know it -Top Secret Name


From a freelance youtuber by the name of Top Secret Name, comes a mash-up of the R&B instrumental of Childish Gambino’s 2016 “Redbone” with the lyrics of Gotye’s 2012 hit wonder “Somebody I Used to Know” A simple mix but one that hits right in feels as the yearning to move on from a past love meets a soulful backbeat with an emphasis on a strong slap bass line with a synth organ carrying the melody. The beautiful harmonies of Gotye and New Zealander singer Kimbra are made a focal point as this mash-up turns the sad vibes of their original songs up to an 11.


Link to the original song: What Redbone would sound like if you used to know it


3. Game Over -Silvagunner


Despite the misleading title, this is not in fact, the Game Over theme for the game Super Mario World composed by the legendary Koji Kando but is actually the 2015 R&B song “Oui” by Jeremih mashed up together by the mash-up artist known as Silvagunner. This song takes the backbeat of Oui and mixes it with the piano of the Game Over theme to create a lo-fi hip-hop, if not trap beat to accompany the love lyrics sung by Jeremih. While an argument and some very loose connections can be made for the other songs for this list, there is absolutely no reason for this mash-up to exist, nor does it have any right to actually sound good. The somber, digitized piano combined with the heartfelt love lyrics of wanting to be together with the strong and ever present backbeat make this mash-up incredibly catchy and pleasing to the ears in a way that is unique to this song.


Link to the original song: Game Over - Super Mario World

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