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  • 03.06.11

A Mesmerizing Music Video Made Using Google Earth

Bartholomäus Traubeck’s hypnotic video for Lux Repeat combines glitchy Google visuals with futuristic graphic design.

A Mesmerizing Music Video Made Using Google Earth

Bartholomäus Traubeck has created a music video for the band Lux Repeat that takes place entirely in the glitchy landscape of Google Earth. Instead of feeling arid and boring (like minimal electronica can be), the music becomes the perfect in-flight soundtrack to a fantastic voyage over a polygonal twilight world:

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Google Earth makes the world look like a 1980s arcade game, and Traubeck heightens the effect by centering his own razor-sharp graphic shapes on the eerily empty landscapes. It looks futuristic and retro (and vaguely menacing) at the same time, like a targeting reticle from Halo superimposed over graphics from After Burner.

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Traubeck even finds beautiful graphic design in Google Earth itself, which he highlights by intermittently cutting to God’s eye views of human-made landscapes. Of course, the giant “X” hovering over them looks unnervingly like a bomb sight, but hey, at least he’s consistent.

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And what’s this image he ends on: is it a merciful coda of warmth in his icy virtual flyover? Or is it another giant target? (Personally I think it looks like the Eye of Sauron. Thanks for the nightmares, Bartholomäus!)

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Love it or hate it, Traubeck’s video concept and overall eye for design detail is ingenious. Maybe he could do something with Google Street View next; a nice poppy folk song, perhaps, with some actual human faces to lighten things up?

[Via Maria Popova]

About the author

John Pavlus is a writer and filmmaker focusing on science, tech, and design topics. His writing has appeared in Wired, New York, Scientific American, Technology Review, BBC Future, and other outlets.

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