People Like Us

Under the name “People Like Us,” artist Vicki Bennett has been making work available via CD, DVD and vinyl releases, radio broadcasts, concert appearances, gallery exhibits and online streaming and distribution since 1992. Bennett has developed an immediately recognisable aesthetic repurposing pre-existing footage to craft audio and video collages with an equally dark and witty take on popular culture. She sees sampling and collage as folk art sourced from the palette of contemporary media and technology, with all of the sharing and cross-referencing incumbent to a populist form. Embedded in her work is the premise that all is interconnected and that claiming ownership of an “original” or isolated concept is both preposterous and redundant. Most of the People Like Us back catalogue has been available for free online since 2002. For many artists, profit and publicity is more likely through free distribution (the gift economy) than independent publishers and distributors, which often struggle with limited resources. Online self-distribution allows an artist to keep their work available, resolving a tension between label production costs and the desire of an artist for work to be available. UbuWeb generously hosts the discography and filmography of People Like Us.

This year marks 30 years for People Like Us, marked by a cover feature in The Wire Magazine (May 2021, a touring of Gone, Gone Beyond, a 360 immersive cinema installation to nyMusikk Oslo, SPILL Festival Ipswich, Attenborough Centre (ACCA) Brighton and London Barbican, and an evening hosted by People Like Us at their favourite venue Cafe OTO.

https://peoplelikeus.org/

Featured releases

First released in digital-only form in 2004 exclusively for UbuWeb (ubu.com), this album includes Vicki’s John Peel session and performances for WFMU, amongst others, both from 2003, and now with brand new artwork designed by Vicki Bennett. "We strongly believe in the power of profit through free distribution. Often people have never heard of an artist because they aren't being distributed through as many channels as they should be, due to the very poor state of music/media distribution for non-major label music coupled with ignorance of the way that avant garde art forms infiltrate mainstream culture. Also many prints of a work are allowed to go out of circulation or are deleted for no reason other than cost effectiveness by a label/publisher. This makes perfect sense financially, but no sense whatsoever that a year's work by an artist should also disappear for such reasons. So get all of this while you can, and we completely endorse getting one's work out there, no matter what. If you don't share, your profit is limited." - People Like Us, 2004” People Like Us is audiovisual collage artist Vicki Bennett, who has been making work available via CD, DVD and vinyl releases, radio broadcasts, performances, gallery exhibits and online streaming for 25 years. Since 1992, she has developed an immediately recognisable aesthetic repurposing pre-existing footage to craft audio and video collages with an equally dark and witty take on popular culture. She sees sampling and appropriation as folk art sourced from the palette of contemporary media and technology, with all of the sharing and cross-referencing incumbent to a populist form. Embedded in her work is the premise that all is interconnected and that claiming ownership of an “original” or isolated concept is both preposterous and redundant.”

People Like Us – Abridged Too Far

OTO wishes you all a great time over the festive period. To celebrate People Like Us have treated us to this special Holiday Mix. Available for free download. Enjoy! Tracklisting: Matthijs Vlot - HelloLionel Richie on HeliumPeople Like Us and Wobbly - HelloThe Evolution Control Committee - HelloAnimals Within Animals - HelloAE - Tape Cuts HelloKen Nordine - HelloThe Evolution Control Committee - HelloCurd Duca - Cassettedʳᶤᵖ⁻₁₃₃ - ·•● flexButtress O’Kneel - The Britney Spears RecordsButtress O’Kneel - RhapsodyWΔll Flowers - Subliminal RomanceNew Dreams Ltd Initiation Tape - PSR41Limahl - The NeverEnding Story (Indecorum Vaporized)Buttress O’Kneel - NeverendingButtress O’Kneel - Rhapsodybd594 - Bohemian RhapsodyButtress O’Kneel - Martian RhapsodyLes Baxter - Lunar RhapsodyThe Evolution Control Committee - Spandau FiletErgo Phizmiz - Welcome AudioOtomo Yoshihide - TEACGwilly Edmondez - Break Up The PieceRoy Smeck - Waltz Of YesteryearBBC Radiophonic Workshop - Christmas CommercialAelters - Pal-Xmas Cheap GiftDJ BC - Jesu Joy Of Man's DesiringSvein Tuba Johannessen - Oh. What A MealStimmhorn - SchneeGeorge Winston - Skating (Remastered 1996)Unknown - ChariotsAdam Bohman - At HomeVoicedude - Santa Benz Rank Sinatra - Last ChristmasGoulburn Poultry Fanciers Society - Last ChristmasAdam Bohman - At HomeVince Guaraldi - SkatingAntzz - CrimboThe Kleptones - A Night At The Hip Hopera (excerpt)Blood Brothers - Under PressurePeople Like Us & Gwilly Edmondez & Hearty White & Caterina Robertson - BoxesPeople Like Us - ForeverL'Atome - The Air Beneath My MaskLuiz Henrique - Mas Que NadaDirt Bike Boy - Dolce Vita Felicity Glitch MixMatmos - SchwittUrsGwilly Edmondez - Grevious Bodily CharmChristo Graham - Muppet Christ Superstar

People Like Us – Holiday Mix

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First released on Mess Media in 2002 on CD, and then reissued on cassette in 2018 on Sucata Tapes, we've combined the digital files of both to bring this to you all on one place. This was compiled as a Best Of People Like Us from pre-2000. Amazing to think it is almost 20 years later that we write this. This represents an earlier life of PLU, some of which carries through to now, some left long behind...“The work of People Like Us rests gingerly between two dangerous positions: on the one hand, the risk of fashioning merely stylish pastiche out of borrowed finery for the sake of self-conscious kitschiness; on the other hand, the risk of making simplistic, heavy handedly “topical” audio-jokes at the expense of one’s raw material to a smug effect. If the lounge creeps uncritically snack on their sonic ingredients and coast on being “groovy”, the cads of pseudo-critique take cheap shots at straw men and call it subversion. Happily, Vicki Bennett has yet to fall down either precipice, but yodels down contentedly from her own Alpine audio-cottage. There, with loving care, she snips and tucks at the lycra jumpsuit until the fit is snug, places every plastic shrub on the Happy Valley Ranch just so, and throws another dance record on the bonfire. Undercutting her own utopian mirages with formal breakdowns and sneaky semantic pranks, Vicki Bennett is One Funny Lady, with a deadly sense of comic timing that puts her in my personal pantheon of edit intensive music makers: -Steinski and Mass Media, Hank Shocklee, Tod Dockstader, Teo Macero, the Hanatarash, John Oswald, Runzelstirn & Gurgelstock. Serving her birthday cake with a turd, her gags are always lined with a virulent creep factor. You get the feeling that the vacancy and pointlessness of empty speech is being lampooned and mourned in equal measure. In sticking to this balance of celebration and critique, People Like Us genuinely hates and loves People Like You. The least you can do is head up to the Happy Valley Ranch for a spell and have a listen.” – Drew Daniel (Matmos) 2002 

People Like Us – Recyclopaedia Britannica

Previously released on accompanied by “Gone, Gone Beyond”, “The Mirror” is the dreamy soundtrack of an a/v project from collage artist extraordinaire Vicki Bennett aka People Like Us.With ‘’The Mirror’’ Bennett continues her eternal disassembling of popular music by exploring how the narrative of familiar sounds/songs can change dramatically under a new context, with that context always changing, in a never-ending flow.Each song is singular. And each song is a collage of and undefined number of other songs from other artists. It sounds familiar because that has been the modus operandi of People Like Us since the early 1990s. But “The Mirror” plays with the notion of familiar, driving around a collection of famous pop songs/artists, messing around with the memory of the listener and, of course, his unique comprehension of those specific songs applied in a new context.Because of the use of familiar pop sounds, “The Mirror” is often grandiose. Like an epic film only with highs, never letting the listener down or letting him doubt the power of pop. Even, of course, when the coordinates are twisted, mixed, over or underrepresented. Each moment feels like something that could only happen in a parallel universe. Although that may sound naïve, it’s just a lost thought of reaction to the beautiful collages of People Like Us in “The Mirror”. This mirror doesn’t reflect an image of ourselves or an image of pop. But an image on the way memories drift and are being constant rebuilt. An unfinished collage. 

People Like Us – The Mirror

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