In the time — love, joy, space — between albums, Britney fans have been known to get a little…creative to keep themselves from becoming too bored. (Just do it, baby. Just do it!)
From constant rumors of surprise award show performances and Super Bowl halftime shows (bless you Britney Army for your endless optimism), to voting like mad on Internet polls, to latching on to every sweet morsel of news about the making of B9 (#JustLoveMe), to throwing SPEARITUAL BIRTHDAY PARTIES THIS SATURDAY, Brit’s bitches always find a way to keep the Living Legend in the spotlight — even when she’s sneaking away to the Philippines. Or taking selfies with books. Or posting memes.
Sometimes (REFERENCE), a few talented fans go the extra mile by putting their own cool and funky spin on somethin’ we’ve already heard before, whether it’s in the form of a remix, a mash-up or an acoustic cover.
But this week, a Spanish fan named Gryves Martell created something a little more personal: Bare, a compilation that incorporates reworked album tracks, leaked demos and rough cuts largely picked from the Blackout sessions and the mysterious Original Doll era in the mid ’00s, back when B-Girl was intent on getting even more hands-on and making her most personal album to date. (Sorry, Britney Jean.)
The remixed versions of B’s works in progress like “Baby Boy,” “Money, Love & Happiness,” “Welcome To Me” and “Let Go” are all really interesting, artsy fartsy interpretations (that atmospheric reworking of “Perfume”!), but the most genius thing about the album might be “new” songs like “Bare” and “covers” of Radiohead‘s “How To Disappear Completely” and Björk‘s “Generous Palmstroke,” which essentially turn Britney into a Japanese Vocaloid, stitching fragments of her voice together to create entirely “new” songs. It’s Hatsune Mikuney, bitch! (The album even comes with a cool, lovingly crafted booklet, complete with song lyrics, credits and appropriately mysterious imagery.)
It’s introspective, vibey and left-lane, showcasing a number of ways she could really reinvent and evolve her sound with this new era. And, at the very least, it’s something to briefly quench our thirst for B9 just in time for December 2, The Holy Spearit’s blessed day of birth.
I spoke to the producer behind Bare to get some more insight into making the album.
I love Bare. I was wondering if you could tell me a bit more about how you made it. It took two years?
Thank you very much! I’m glad you like it! Well, I started making it in September of 2013, and after several changes I finally got to move forward and finish it.
I see some songs are inspired by Radiohead and Björk! I love how you used them. How come you picked those songs, and did you blend in any other songs from artists?
About Björk’s [“Generous Palmstroke”], I chose that song because at that time I had a huge obsession with it. And it has an intimate vibe that fits on the album. And about Radiohead’s [“How To Disappear Completely”], I made that song because I read an article that said Britney should’ve done a cover of “How To Disappear Completely” in 2007, and I was like “Why not? Let’s give it a try.” I couldn’t recreate the whole song, but I think it’s a nice version. I sampled songs of other artists, like Madonna for example. In “Just Yesterday.” you can hear the guitars from “X-Static Process” in the background.
Almost all of the songs come from around the Original Doll era. Was this sort of an attempt to piece that together in your eyes?
The way you have Britney “singing” new songs reminds me of Hatsune Miku, the Japanese Vocaloid pop star.
Yes, I know Hatsune. She’s really cute! I really appreciate that the few people who have listened to Bare liked the Robotney songs, because I wasn’t sure about it at first. But then I felt like they give the album some “personality,” making it something different from other fanmade albums.
Who would you like to see producing for Britney this time around?
I would love William Orbit to produce her again. Bloodshy & Avant – they always make amazing songs – and I’d like her to work with Marius De Vries.
How can people hear more from you? Are you working on anything?
I’ve done a lot of “stuff,” but I haven’t uploaded much yet. I have some remixes and snippets from unfinished songs on my Soundcloud. There are very few things, but there’s more to come! Right now, I’m producing a couple songs for an amateur singer from a city near mine. And I want to make a Bare-like album — this time of Madonna, maybe.