There’s The Blues Brothers, Spinal Tap, Hannah Montana; the silver screen is full of artists who’s short back catalog remains in our heads even after the credits have ended. Up to now, the music in cinema has mostly been restricted to the film, partly because of shame for allowing tracks of Wayne’s World to be included in our usual schedule – however Alex Cassidy is looking to change this with Spotifictional.
The newly-launched website Spotifictional is a site that aims to bring together the hundreds of fictional artists, bands and tracks “‘nested’ in television and film”, Alex says, “allowing you to listen and discover these meta-gems in one place”. The reason for the amazing notion, Alex explains: “I’ve always been a fan of the meta-ness the insertion of fictional characters into shows, be it sports teams such as The Miami Sharks in Any given Sunday or novels such as the novel An Infinite An Affliction in Fault in Our Stars.
The first time I saw Netflix in the summer of last year I was immediately impressed with the innovative way it had taken to present them with an imitation of streaming services.” After cleaning up the old version of Community, “which has the fictional band Natalie is Freezing in the plot”, Alex discovered there databases such as Rocklopedia Fakebandica that were collecting details on music from films, but nobody had come up with an untrue platform to search the entire collection in the style of Nestflix.
Naturally, Alex stepped in. Spotifictional is a pleasant resemblance to Spotify and simple to navigate, and allows users to listen to music by linking every fictional artist to a genuine YouTube and Spotify page. The site also offers an option for users to add bands are currently not on the site as well as a search process that Alex claims has already begun on Reddit. Initially, Alex created a site which was more akin to a database, and had more “overt Spotify design elements” however, after a poor performance on Reddit the site was in need of an overhaul.
“The appeal in both Nestflix and Spotifictional is that it gives you the impression of being a real service, with the in-joke of knowing it’s a ‘fake’ band,” Alex says. “Once I settled on doing less detail and more design, the most important part was ensuring the bands had artwork that resembled a real album or single, that element makes it feel like you’re scrolling through a streaming service rather than looking at a dispassionate list of fictional bands.”
The process of collating an array of music that is fictional has also made Alex realize the extent to which “expertly realised” a lot of fake album covers can be, tricking people (this article’s author was one of them) to believe that fake bands are genuine. One such example being Inside Llewyn Davis‘ album covers. “They pay so much attention to detail that you’d not even know they exist. As the result, they give an impression of a whole world of music within that universe, which you won’t hear. However, the music you will hear is fantastic too.” We’re excited to go back to some of the best tracks by Spotifictional but we have one request once it’s going Add the School of Rock back catalog immediately.