Song Reader, the latest album from Beck, isn't easy to listen to. Why? It's available exclusively on sheet music. This struck fans (and us) as incredibly annoying at first—especially those without any musical ability. But once we laid our eyes on the stuff, we were sold. In order to hear the song for ourselves, we reached out to a New York City based band, named Contramano, to record "Old Shanghai," a song from the album.
Working with a team of artists including Marcel Dzama (who created the imagery for Beck's acclaimed Guero), Leanne Shapton, Josh Cochran, and Jessica Hische, Beck has created what's arguably the best-looking, music-free pop album ever.
"Why," by project art director Walter Green
"We All Wear Cloaks," by Kyle Pellet
"Do We? We Do," by Sergio Membrillas
"Don't Act Like Your Heart Isn't Hard," by Josh Cochran
A version of this article appeared in the December 2012/January 2013 issue of Fast Company magazine.