Tiny Desk Concert (house): NPR

Maylee Todd’s (home) concert is filled with electronics, a window into a virtual world and the first digital avatar to perform a Tiny Desk concert. Maylee introduces us to her avatar Maloo, and the songs featured here from Maylee Todd’s debut album malou are sung from the avatar’s perspective.

Written during the pandemic, the album deals with mental health and is filled with several sci-fi stories, including one about a programmable planet depicted in the “window” above Maylee Todd’s head.

Electronic sounds that help tell these sci-fi tales include Maylee’s Tenori-on, a Yamaha instrument comprised of a panel of lights that, when touched, creates sound patterns. An iPhone pointing at Maylee’s face captures her reactions and expressions, which are then reflected in her avatar. His musical partner Kyvita (Kyle Tan) accompanies him, adding textures from his synthesizers.

In the song “Dream With You”, Maylee explains that while the avatar is living his life, he realizes that “my brain is doing things that I don’t want it to do”. Maylee Todd explains that Maloo “wrote a song, a breakup song saying goodbye to some aspects that no longer serve her.”

Ahead of her latest song “Absolute Time and Space”, Maylee Todd makes an impassioned plea: “Hold the ones you love dear to your heart, will you! Because time flies – we don’t have time and space absolutes – as he spins out – in these bodies.”

LIST OF SETTINGS

  • “Infinite Program”
  • “Grab Your Guts”
  • “No ranking”
  • “Dreaming With You”
  • “Absolute Time and Space”

THE MUSICIANS

  • Maylee Todd: vocals, synths, iPhone face tracking
  • Kyvita: bass, keyboard
  • Maloo (avatar): performance

CREDITS

  • Director and Editor: Mason Rothschild
  • Mixing and mastering: Jake Viator
  • Engineer: Chris Dwyer
  • Production designer and AD: Leo Johnson
  • DP: Elisha Jakob Maltinski
  • Cam Op: Petra Wurzinger
  • Cam Op: Roderick Hale, Ron Vasquez
  • Art Director: Allison Jensen
  • Set hairstylist: B Armstrong
  • Handle: Josh Brantner

SMALL OFFICE TEAM

  • Producer: Bob Boilen
  • Video editor: Kara Frame
  • Audio mastering: Josh Rogosin
  • Small production team: Bobby Carter, Joshua Bryant, Michael Zamora, Maia Stern, Ashley Pointer
  • Vice President, Visuals and Music: Keith Jenkins
  • Senior Vice President, Programming: Anya Grundmann

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