NASA Collabo: A Microcosm of the New Media Renaissance

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Musicians Squeak E. Clean and DJ Zegon joined forces under the name NASA (North America/South America) to release their first album, The Spirit of Apollo, which has been in-progress since '03.

Promotion strikes me as general and disorganized, but the pair has many talented hands behind it. According to the pressie, the Apollo album was conceived "with the righteous goal of bringing people together through music and art" -- as a result, it's heavy with surprising collaborations and interesting visual media.


Tom Waits growls over Kool Keith, Karen O taunts while Ol' Dirty Bastard gives shout-outs to Wu Tang and N.A.S.A from the grave, and David Byrne, Chuck D and others expound on the evils of "Money."

Other collaborators include Method Man, Seu Jorge, Kanye West, Santogold, George Clinton. Then there's the charmed director team: Syd Garon, Paul Griswold, 3Legged Legs and Flourescent Hill.

Artists that donated paint and pens to the animated music videos include Shepard Fairey, Sage Vaughn, The Date Farmers, Mark Gonzales, Marcel Dzama and Splunny. Some also contributed original album cover designs, so CD buyers get five interchangeable covers per copy.

I realize this is a lot going on so I'm gonna just show you stuff. Here's the latest release, People Tree with David Byrne, Chali 2na (from J-5!) and art by Marcel Dzama. It's magically delicious.

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by Angela Natividad    Mar-12-09    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Social, Trends and Culture, Video



Whatever Happened to Progressively Smaller Handsets?

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Riding Ad Land's current obsession with breaking into Guinness, Cricket has just produced the world's largest cell phone -- a gigantosaur Samsung Messager composed of "wood, metal, lights, wizardry, and love."

Video here.

The phone -- so big you risk cardiac arrest if you happen to be lying on it in vibrate mode -- kicks off Cricket's Get Some Respekt campaign. See it in person through March 15th in Chicago; the monster of mobile hits Philly on the 20th.

Orchestrated by Seattle's Cultural Engineers and events firm NEVERSTOP.

by Angela Natividad    Mar-12-09    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Events, Guerilla, Mobile/Wireless



Don't Just Dab Your Mouth; THINK.

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We've all heard the legend that JK Rowling sketched the birth of Harry Potter out on a diner napkin while scratching by on welfare. The iconic "I Love New York" campaign was supposedly conceived in similarly humble circumstances -- on somebody's crumpled serviette.

To leverage the power of this unlikely muse, the School of Visual Arts re-imagines diner napkins, toilet paper, sugar sachets and other incidental scraps as college-ruled paper.

Across the bottom of each sheet is the message, "Think. School of Visual Arts." Nice, simple and instantly-engaging. We wish we had some doodle-worthy napkin now, and we're not sure we even remember how to use a pen.

Work by Knarf/New York; more photos at Toxel.com.

by Angela Natividad    Mar-12-09    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Good, Guerilla



Mars Hosts Online, Offline Easter Egg Hunt

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Thanksgiving. Christmas. Valentine's Day. *slap* Easter. Please, make it stop! It's like one holiday ends and another begins. So, yea, Easter's on the way and so are the Easter-themed campiagns like this one from Mars Canada for M&M. Created by Proximity Canada, BBDO Toronto and Firstborn, this one has been dubbed "Canada's most Speck-tacular Egg hunt."

With print, TV (see one of the spots here), POP and online, people are urged to collect M&M eggs hidden around the web (a virtual egg hunt!) and in stores with PIN codes to use as entrance to drawing to win a trip to New York, Las Vegas or Orlando.

There's a site, four minisites and banners on MSN.ca, Yahoo.ca, MySpace.ca and others all with PIN codes to hunt for. Have at it.

by Steve Hall    Mar-11-09    
Topic: Campaigns, Commercials, Games, Online, Point of Purchase, Television



...Is it the Foam Beard that Makes the Big Boys Strip and Shave?

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Continuing that creepy Japanese game show-inspired shaving fetish campaign thing for Nivea, DraftFCB and Rubber Republic assault us with Foam Beard Lady.

We are appropriately terrified.

The associated microsite guides shaving addicts to Stepping Stones Retreat, where a slightly Running with Scissors-y doctor will promise to cure you of glabermania while eye-raping you with Nivea shaving products. Compulsive shavers will no doubt be pleased.

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by Angela Natividad    Mar-11-09    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Online, Strange, Trends and Culture



Vodka Firm Ferrets Out Nation's Best O-Face

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Victims of Office Space probably remember the unforgettable reference to the O face -- that almost embarrassingly vulnerable expression guys make when they're stuffing somebody full of meat popsicle.

Under the mistaken impression that it's clever (and maybe on some level it is), Three Olives Vodka has launched a "What's Your O-Face" contest. Give 'em your best O and you could win $10,000, a "VIP trip to NYC" (what is that, a Broadway show and coke?) and the privilege of getting your O-face splashed all over a national ad campaign.

Think of it! You could be the village bicycle ... except for the whole country.

Associated creative: blue O-face, cherry O-face, root beer O-face.

by Angela Natividad    Mar-11-09    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Online, Poster



Just Imagine, for a Sec, that Jellyfish were Table Lamps

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Here, Nordpol envisions a secret world populated by IKEA furniture.

Hrm. Wonder whose unfortunate job it was to parse out the setup manual for all those levitating lawn chairs. The spoon fish were neat, though.

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by Angela Natividad    Mar-11-09    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Commercials, Television



Testicular Awareness Goes Right for the Balls

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You gotta forgive the quality of the imagery at left, but we couldn't leave this one alone. For a Macedonian testicular cancer awareness campaign, grabby paper hands were laid down on public seats or positioned suggestively over barber's gowns, snatchin'-the-manpouch style.

The objective is to take the stigma away from checking your Holy Grail for testicular cancer. (Alternatively, I don't know how I'd feel if I put on a barber gown and looked down to find two disembodied hands cupped over my boobies. I guess I'd have no choice but to live with it.)

The blunt "Check Them" message also appeared on eggs -- which made us feel decidedly wary about picking any up in the near future.

Orchestrated by McCann Erickson for NGO Veritas Spiriti. The work is also shortlisted in the "Best Targeted Campaign" category of this year's Festival of Media Awards.

by Angela Natividad    Mar-11-09    
Topic: Campaigns, Cause, Good, Guerilla



'Now You Know We're Allergic to Peanuts.'

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2K Sports promotes video game MLB2K9 with an ad where a Giants player schools his (adorably earnest) virtual self in both work and play.

It's witty work, a big plus considering there's no genuinely exciting way to hype a video game about baseball.

Agency: Ground Zero.

UPDATE: If you'd like a more mundane version of this piece, click here.

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by Angela Natividad    Mar-10-09    
Topic: Brands, Campaigns, Commercials, Good, Television



Anti-Suicide Folk Bring Sudden End to Songs, TV Shows

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Suicide Action Montreal needed to get its message of suicide prevention out to a jaded province. Faced with the challenge, the clever cats at Touche! phd, Sid Lee and Astral Media concluded there's no better way to illustrate suicide than to bring an abrupt end to things people like.

The campaign rolled out in two ways. To start, popular programs randomly went black to make way for the following (roughly translated) message: "Does this premature ending surprise you? Imagine if it happened to the life of someone close."

After a few seconds of darkness, the episodes started rolling again. Same thing happened with popular songs on the radio.

Refreshingly out-of-box. Check out examples of both the TV and radio executions (bad pun!) on the Touche! phd blog.

by Angela Natividad    Mar-10-09    
Topic: Campaigns, Cause, Good, Radio, Television










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