Massive Attack’s Mezzanine reissued as DNA-encoded spray paint

Massive Attack

The trip-hop duo have released the remastered version of Mezzanine as an aerosol spray.

In April, the pair announced that they would be marking the 20th anniversary of Mezzanine by encoding it into DNA. At the time, Robert Del Naja said he was interested in how “synthesised DNA can be added to paint or ink and where that might lead in the creation of art and artefacts”. In September, news came of the 1998 album being reissued on coloured vinyl with previously unheard dub remixes by Mad Professor and heat sensitive packaging.

Now, the classic LP has been released as spray paint, with the ink of each can containing around one million copies of the album’s DNA. Dr Robert Grass of TurboBeads explained the process: “To enable the mixing of the DNA with the spray can paint and to guarantee information stability, the DNA sequences were encapsulated in synthetic glass fossils and then directly added to the spray can.”

“We ensured that every spray can contains at least 0.1 micrograms of the synthetic DNA, which is equivalent to 1 million copies of the album. This is only possible due to the immense data capacity of DNA (about 100 exabytes per gram).”

Massive Attack’s 3D, who’s also a graffiti artist, said via a press statement, “It’s a creative way to store your back catalogue, although DNA-encoded spray paint is unlikely to be adopted by street artists seeking anonymity.”

Check out the packaging below.

Massive Attack Mezzanine