’3 Dreams in Black’ takes the concept of a music video down a more immersive direction with the help of HTML5 and WebGL technology.
HTML5 has been the subject of several experimental projects in web design lately, and in particular how we experience music. We’ve covered several of these projects, including Anatomy of A Mashup, The Wilderness Downtown, and The Johnny Cash Project. At last week’s Google I/O, music video director Chris Milk, and @radical.media introduced their latest collaboration (following The Wilderness Downtown), titled ‘3 Dreams in Black‘. At its simplest, most essential level, the site is an immersive, interactive music video for the single ‘Black,’ off of Danger Mouse and Daniele Luppi’s upcoming album Rome (featuring Jack White and Norah Jones’ vocals).
The video experience uses HTML5 and WebGL technology to bring accelerated 3D graphics directly to the browser (specifically, Chrome). As expected, the video’s storyline and interaction makes 3D a centerpiece of the experience. The site tells us the story of a character named Temple, taking us through several dreamscapes littered with 3D animations – meant to resemble the bizarre real vs. not appearance of a dream. Users can further explore the landscapes from their keyboard, and contribute 3D creatures by using a 3D-model creator.
We’ve seen several items in the past couple of weeks (including last week’s Moby album launch) that offer some glimpses of the future of digital music and how more immersive music videos could help sell and promote albums. And then, of course, there’s what those capabilities do for the ability to complement the story of the music. On that note, director Chris Milk expressed;
I have a philosophy about telling stories through multiple channels, and how we as humans are far-more-sophisticated media-consuming beings than we were 10 years ago. We can actually track these stories on multiple platforms for longer periods of time… There are a lot of ‘easter eggs’ and hidden things, and at the end of it… there’s a lot to explore. It may seem at first like it’s just one three-and-a-half-minute-long piece, but if you keep looking and going further, there’s no shortage of rabbit holes to go down.
Here’s the YouTube version of the file for quick reference: