How ‘Planet of the Bass’ Became the Unlikely Song of the Summer

Gordon, 30, has been doing improv in New York City since 2014, but DJ Crazy Times originated back when he was in a college a capella group at Denison University in Ohio. It stems in part from his genuine fandom of groups such as Aqua, Real McCoy, and Toy-Box.

The original clip was filmed in the Oculus, the gleaming white and dystopian mall located on the site of the World Trade Center. His brother, Sam Gordon, filmed it on an iPhone before the crew was kicked out of the building. “Everyone was staring at us because we were literally in the middle of the Oculus,” Kyle recalls. “They let us go on for a while, but after a while a security guard just came up and was like, ‘Yeah, you can’t do this anymore.’”

The actress in the clip is Audrey Trullinger, though the vocalist on the track is the singer and songwriter Chrissi Poland. Gordon created the song with the producer Brooks Allison and soundmixer and engineer Jamie Siegel. When it came to his writing process, Gordon says, “I knew I needed the word cyber in there somewhere.” The standout lyric, “women are my favorite guy,” came to him because, “I think I wanted to say something about women.” (Gordon says his personal favorite is “there is nothing to be sad.”)

As for the clothes, Gordon wanted to go for a “90s space rave aesthetic,” and so he’s wearing a pair of his snow pants, clip-on hoop earrings, a vest that came along with an army costume, and his girlfriend’s swim goggles.

When asked to guess why “Planet of the Bass” has resonated so much, Gordon ventures that, “It’s this type of music was popular 20, 25 years ago, so it captures a lot of people like me who remember this music peeking through in the U.S. every now and then. You’d get a ‘Barbie Girl’ or a ‘Blue (Da Ba Dee, Da Ba Di).’ So I think maybe it’s just a nostalgia thing.”

He also pointed to the recent success of the Barbie movie. “I do have a hunch that the song ‘Barbie Girl’ might be back in the zeitgeist, and then you go out one more layer of reference from that, to ’90s Eurodance,” Gordon says.

When we spoke on Thursday, Gordon mentioned that “the ubiquity of positive reaction so far has been pretty mind-blowing.” A mere hour later, he posted another teaser video, this time featuring Mara Olney as the new female companion. It was filmed on Roosevelt Island, a New York City landmass that houses an abandoned smallpox hospital. 

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Many fans were disappointed by the switch in the original actress, though others pointed out that, “You might think its a bad decision to just release a worse version of your surprise hit but its actually the most europop response possible.” (There’s still one more teaser clip coming with another female TikTok star.)

Gordon is now contemplating potential followup songs. “Even within this broad genre of Eurodance, there are so many different sounds and ways you could go,” he says. “You could go more of a Vengaboys bouncy kind of way, or a ‘What Is Love,’ or more of a Tiësto, massive arena trance kind of thing.”

He was also thrilled to find that “Planet of the Bass” made its way all the way to the high priests of Eurodance: Aqua. “They commented on my TikTok and they wrote the best thing ever,” Gordon says. “They said: ‘Wait, is this play about us?’”

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