OK Go perform an acoustic set in The Current studio

OK Go perform "The Writing's on the Wall" live in The Current studio. (MPR)
OK Go In-studio
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  • OK Go In-studio 28:20
  • OK Go - I Won't Let You Down (Live on The Current) 03:45
  • OK Go - Wave of Mutilation (Pixies cover) (Live on The Current) 02:29
  • OK Go - The Writing's on the Wall (Live on The Current) 03:50

OK Go like to push the bounds of imagination in all its positive forms. They spent a month in Japan recording one of their acclaimed music videos, and just recently, they went to China to appear in a TV commercial for a furniture chain. "We're super psyched when we get to do things like [that], when we get to chase our creativity into weird places," says OK Go front man Damian Kulash.

Kulash and two other members of OK Go, bassist Tim Nordwind and lead guitarist Andy Ross, stopped in to The Current's studio to play an acoustic session and to chat with Jill Riley while they were in town to play a sold-out show at First Avenue.

And it turns out First Avenue — which is celebrating its 45th anniversary — has a special place in the hearts of OK Go. "First Ave is sort of where rock 'n' roll started for me," Kulash explains. "The first record I truly fell in love with, the full album, was Purple Rain … so every time we've ever played First Ave, it's felt like a kind of religious experience."

First Avenue also was a place where OK Go cut their teeth playing live shows, something for which they are renowned, given the immersive, spectacular experiences they create. "We're trying to push our live show into the same exuberance and level of surprise that we're known for in our videos," Kulash says.

And it's the combination of live shows, recorded tracks, music videos and other projects that ultimately comprise OK Go. As Kulash explains, "We try not to recognize a distinction between the different types of creativity that we pursue. Basically, everybody is making ones and zeroes these days: Whether you're recording in a studio for MPR or if you're writing your blog or you're programming a video game or you're making music or a video or whatever, the method of distribution is largely the same. So the things that used to define the differences between these different categories in the 20th century have become a lot more arbitrary."

Listen to the complete interview to hear more about how OK Go like to push the boundaries of creativity to break down the barriers between themselves and their audiences. Kulash, Nordwind and Ross also share a funny First Avenue memory about a band called Exumed and an experience they describe as "rockandrollus interruptus."

Songs Performed

"I Won't Let You Down"
"Wave of Mutilation" (Pixies cover)
"The Writing's on the Wall"
Original songs are off OK Go's recent album, Hungry Ghosts, available on the band's Paracadute label.

Hosted by Jill Riley
Produced by Lindsay Kimball
Engineered by Corey Schreppel
Web feature by Luke Taylor

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7 Photos

  • OK Go
    OK Go's Damian Kulash, Andy Ross and Tim Nordwind performing live in The Current studio (MPR / Nate Ryan)
  • OK Go
    OK Go's Tim Nordwind performing live in The Current studio (MPR / Nate Ryan)
  • OK Go
    OK Go's Damian Kulash and Andy Ross performing live in The Current studio (MPR / Nate Ryan)
  • OK Go
    OK Go performing live in The Current studio (MPR / Nate Ryan)
  • OK Go
    The OK Go glockenspiel (MPR / Nate Ryan)
  • OK Go
    OK Go (MPR / Nate Ryan)
  • OK Go
    OK Go performing live in The Current studio (MPR / Nate Ryan)

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