This morning’s meme seems to be Slow Motion Justin Beiber, the entertaining result of taking Bieber’s U Smile and stretching it like taffy with a nice piece of open source audio processing called Paul’s Extreme Audio Stretch (but its friends call it “PaulStretch”). The result is a weirdly ethereal ambient piece that lasts for over a half hour.
But what if you throw other stuff at PaulStretch? It turns out it does a pretty nice job of turning anything into a variation on gooey ambiance, though the results do vary in the details from song to song.
So here’s the question: can you recognize super-slow, super-smoothed versions of popular songs? I’ve picked two dozen highly recognizable songs at random out of my music library, fed small you’d-know-it-if-you-heard-it clips of each into PaulStretch, and presented the results below. Give ‘em a listen, take your best guesses in the comments if you like.
[Oops! #4 was a dupe! -j]
For the acoustics/processing nerds: the software does some fairly aggressive audio processing to manage to create slowed-down music that doesn’t sound like choppy hell—as a result, it leaves a fairly strong acoustic imprint on everything it touches, and between the major tempo shift things get really smeared. I threw System of a Down’s Chop Suey at it and the rapid-fire vocals just turned into big echoey smears.
This is all tweakable, of course, and the Windows version at least is incredibly simple to get going. I highly encourage you to give it a shot if you’re at all interested in this output. Just download, extract, and start feeding it audio files and messing with the controls. I kept the settings at default for all of these: about 8x expansion in time, about 7k samples. Play with both, you may find that different settings work particularly well for different songs.