Website Of The Day: Mashup Breakdown

By Kara Klenk

Anyone who’s ever listened to a fast-paced, genre-hopping song by musician Girl Talk has wondered what songs are being used and when. Is that from the song I think it’s from? Wired magazine went as far as to create a chart with a beat-by-beat breakdown that revealed the amazing 35 tracks that Girl Talk chopped up, layered and mixed to create a single song from Feed The Animals (2008). Two years later, Benjamin Rahn created Mashup Breakdown, a way to listen to the tracks while seeing what songs make it up.

MTV News talked to Rahn and he said that when he saw the Wired piece, “I remember thinking it was really cool, but it was hard for me to line up what was going on in that image with what I was really hearing. I thought it would be great if there was an animated version of this.”

When Girl Talk released a new album, All Day in (2010), Rahn thought it was the perfect time to create a visualization of the mashups. With the help of others, and for a time a Wikipedia-based crowd-sourcing method, Rahn was able to quickly create what we see now, a simple and cleanly designed way to check out the anatomy of a mashup.

“I expected it to have its 15 minutes of fame, but it keeps getting seeded over and over again,” Rahn told us. He continues to post tracks from other mashup artists on the site.