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“Under Pressure”

Posted by purplemary54 on August 5, 2014

While this is a great song, it’s not quite what I intended for today.

I was checking out Dangerous Minds (as usual), and I came across a post today about technology that can make music visible.  I’m not even going to pretend I understand any of the technical stuff, but I watched the video they embedded in the post, and it looked pretty impressive.  It of course made me think of one of my favorite itunes features: the visualizer.

Visualizer is a setting in itunes that essentially plays a screensaver-like show of colors, shapes, and lights in time to whatever song happens to be playing.  (Click here for an example of what it looks like. I recommend going full screen.)  Of course, the visualizer harkens back to the old days, when venues like the Fillmore East would project a light show on the screen behind the performers that looked a bit like a lava lamp (an effect created with mineral oil, coloring of some sort, and alcohol moving under the heat of a lamp).  It was cool stuff, one of the few aspects of Psychedelia I actually appreciate.  But the patterns created in the liquid light show were pretty random.  I can’t imagine anyone operating the projector and slides would be able to exert that much control or rhythm over a bunch of floating colors.

How this led to “Under Pressure” isn’t really clear, except that I think this song lends itself very nicely to viewing on the visualizer.  The opening notes pulse with energy, and the whole song just soars.  Whoever directed the video for this song did a nice job of creating images that support the combination of David Bowie, Freddie Mercury, and music.  But I bet the Fillmore light show would’ve made it seem even more special.

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