“Thru Tokyo” is part of a series that musician and filmmaker Kutiman started after his wonderful “Thru You” projects. The idea is similar to “Thru You,” in that he’s taking disparate audio and video samples and remixing them into a new composition. The big differences are 1) this isn’t found footage, but is deliberately recorded for the purpose of the video; 2) each composition is made in celebration of a city; and 3) most of the samples are from artists and musicians who live in the city.
As far as I’m concerned, Kutiman alone justifies the existence of YouTube (if not the internet in general). Each video he makes is such a joyful celebration of collaboration and cooperation, creativity and talent. There is such a feeling of optimism and belief in humanity implicit in every one of these compositions, that if we ever make another Voyager probe, I want Kutiman in charge of making the next golden record.
My favorite of this series (and everyone else’s favorite, if the 7.3 million views is any indication) is “Mix Tel Aviv”1Technically, I believe these were different projects with different sponsors, so I mean “series” more in the sense of a creative connection. I believe that Tel Aviv is Kutiman’s home city, or at least it was at the time, and I think that several of the musicians involved are his friends. Regardless, the video shows a love of the city and its people that’s undeniable. In a just universe, Kutiman would’ve gotten the patronage to make videos like this for dozens more cities.