Enter the extremely NSFW 36 Chambers with the Wu-Tang Clan and Legos.
There's a certain kind of mad genius required to mash up the Wu-Tang Clan, Legos and music video. Apparently, David Mortimer is that genius.
David, better known on Vimeo as Davo, has reimagined the video for the classic "Da Mystery of Chessboxin' " off of the giant "Enter the Wu-Tang Clan (36 Chambers)." But of course, this time Legos and stop-motion animation are involved and he has a growing hit with more than 100,000 views since he posted his work in early July.
So what moves a 25-year-old postman from London to remake a classic bit of hard-core hip-hop with Legos? We got in touch with Mortimer to see what's shakin' - and what's next.
Interview after the jump:
SHINY OBJECTS: You had us at "Cheesboxin'," a great song off one of the great albums of the hip hop age. How did you come up with the idea of a Lego/Wu-Tang mashup? And how did you settle on "Cheesboxin'?"
I can't really remember how or why I decided to make a Lego version of the Chessboxin' vid, it's just something I found myself doing one day. I'd never done any stop-motion before, and if I had, I don't think I'd have gone anywhere near "Da Mystery of Chessboxin'!" It's almost five minutes long, and five minutes of stop-motion is a LOT of individual frames.
S.O.: Skimming through the videos you posted, it looks like this is your first pass at a Lego-hip hop fusion. Would you say you wanted to do Lego work or the music video video more?
I do love Lego, but I was more interested in making a video for "Chessboxin'." "36 Chambers" is totally addictive and it took over my life for a while. The lyricism and rhymes on that album are mind-blowing. It was a piece of cake to animate: if I ran out of ideas, I'd just make the Lego dudes act out the lyrics.
S.O.: Do you have a background in music or video - or both? Or is this more of a hobby?
It was just a hobby really. I finish work about 1 or 2 p.m, and it was just something to do in the afternoons before it becomes socially acceptable to start drinking!
S.O.: You've gotten a ton of hits on the "Chesboxin'" video since you posted a couple weeks ago, so you must be inspired to get something else online. What's the next project in your bag of tricks?
Not sure what's next, but I probably won't do any more stop-motion. At one time I thought about doing 36 Wu-Tang Lego videos, the "36 Chambers of Lego" or something, but that'd be ridiculous.
S.O.: Did you do all the Lego work yourself, or was there an assistant hidden somewhere? And are these all your Legos? How big a collection do you have and when did you start collecting?
I did all the animation, with feedback from some mates as I went along. My Lego collection isn't that big, I had loads when I was a kid but sold almost all of it in a teenage fit of madness. Most of the stuff in the video is from a Lego chess set I bought last year.
S.O.: How long did this project take to pull off? And when do we get to see the rest of the album brought to Legoland life (he has a couple of the album's skits done).
Start to finish was a couple of months, but I got seriously bored in the middle and didn't do anything for a while. As for the whole album ... who knows man. Maybe when I retire and I've got a few years to kill!
And in case you're wondering, here's a look at how well Mortimer has matched up the original with the Lego: