Is it enough to just release an album any more? That’s the question so many musicians have been asking more and more lately. That’s why you’ve been seeing so many established artists utilise crowdfunding platforms such as Kickstarter and PledgeMusic in the creation of their albums. Crowdfunding platforms are great for up and coming artists and visionaries to fund a project that they would otherwise have no way of getting off the ground. But for established musicians who have record deals, or the means to produce a high quality record, it gives fans a reason to buy music. If they can get it for free, why pay? For the rewards. Apparently, it’s not enough to buy the product musicians are creating; people need extras in order to make the buy “worth it”.
But, I digress. Kim Boekbinder utilised Kickstarter once again and this time in a very interesting way. Yes, she is making an album, but there aren’t rewards of shirts, autographs or phone calls on offer. Fund the album, provide her with two words, and she will write you a song. Making it about the music and not the rewards on offer. The album is not quite so cut and dry though. Otherwise known as The Impossible Girl, she lives up to her name and attempts what many would deem impossible, or a rather risky adventure. The Infinite Minute is not your average album. Each song only goes for one minute, and the album is not limited to 12 tracks. Sadly, the album is not exactly infinite, but hey she had to stop somewhere, and I think you would agree that considering the pledge finished with Kim having to write 169 songs, it’s pretty damn infinite as far as albums go. Understandably, all 169 songs are not yet finished, but the first 38 have been sent out to backers and are available on her Bandcamp page.
I can only imagine how hard it is to write a song, let alone an album. I am in constant awe that people can somehow create a song from nothing – my brain just doesn’t work that way. But to write a song that is only one minute, leaves me speechless. I find it hard enough to trim my word count down, so I just can’t fathom keeping a song to only 60 seconds. Not to mention that she must create the song from the two words that those who backed the project provided. What if those words inspire nothing? Somehow though, she has done it with the first 38 and I don’t doubt she will be able to do it with the rest.
Infinite Minute is definitely not your average album, there is no theme linking the songs – aside from their length and the fact that each is personalised – and obviously they all have that distinct Kim Boekbinder sound, but they are not linked in the way songs on other albums are. Importantly, Kim Boekbinder has ensured that no two songs sound similar – which is critical because they are all personally written for so many different people. No one wants their song to sound like someone else’s, and no one has to worry about that. And in what I previously would have considered impossible, she says so much in such a short space of time. No song sounds incomplete. Nothing is missing. They are full and brilliant tracks that tell stories important to those they were written for, and – I know I seem stuck on this but – all in only one minute.
This will easily be the most interesting release of 2015, I know we’re barely a week into the year, but I just don’t think anything will top this. It is a nice challenge though to other musicians: who can do something crazier than the Infinite Minute?