The MDBC Totem designed by Boym Partners is an object used to unlock and download DJ Matthew Dear’s latest album Black City, hence MDBC. It’s an experiment by record label Ghostly International in digital music delivery.
The sculptural totem works like a physical key that opens virtual content. Each MDBC Totem, available in a limited edition of 100, has been marked with a unique four-character code that users enter on Dear’s webpage to stream or download the Black City album in its entirety.
Each totem has been cast in bonded aluminium and hand-finished with a gun metal patina. Watch a video of the making of the Totem here.
Apart from its application, the Totem is also a symbolic conduit to Dear’s music, vaguely representative of the “soot blackened skyscrapers that might populate Dear’s creeping, nameless city”. The Totem is both a miniature building and the “key” to an unknown door.