The band's old tunes create an interactive, animated future

By Noah Robischon
Updated October 05, 2001 at 04:00 AM EDT
Glass and the Machines of God: Jim Evans a.k.a.Taz

The Smashing Pumpkins have been captured in ”Glass.” Although the Pumpkins broke up back in 2000, frontman Billy Corgan has created an animated series, ”Glass and the Machines of God,” based on the group’s music and available only online. ”I’ve always been intrigued with the idea that a band could be something they are not,” says Corgan of the show, which will incorporate fables and songs spun from the final Pumpkins albums, ”Machina” and ”Machina II.” The plot is set 106 years in the future, when the world is dominated by impersonal technologies and ”Glass” is a singer/ messiah who offers his fans a kind of musical salvation. But ”Glass and the Machines of God” is more than just a cartoonish re-creation of this tale. Using an awesome palette of sound- and video-editing tools that are the soul of Sony’s Screenblast website, visitors play digital archaeologists who advance ”Glass”’ story by deconstructing and remixing the band’s music. And instead of just jawing about the band on message boards, participants will influence the way the plot develops. The Pumpkins may be yesterday’s news, but ”Glass” is very cutting edge.

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