‘Many of the lyrics are about infections and diseases, so we soon reached a point of no return.’

Team Dadabots x Portrait XO

Country: Germany
Song: I'll Marry You, Punk Come
Team members: CJ Carr, Zack Zukowski and Portrait XO

On the internet: blogpost or other link

hunting and gathering

In every edition of the Eurovision Song Contest, there is one participant that takes an unusual approach. At the AI Song Contest, this could be Dadabots x Portrait XO, working from an artist residency in Berlin but originally from the United States. This trio consists of Portrait XO, an artist experimenting with AI and new media; Zack Zukowski, an expert in machine learning who plays no fewer than five musical instruments; and CJ Carr, a deep learning specialist in AI-generated metal, rock, and punk. Those genres are clearly reflected in their song. All three group members are connected to Factory Berlin, a community of innovators.


‘In the choices that have been made, our humanity inevitably shines through.’

The team used a unique method to write the lyrics: they trained SampleRNN on 1950s acapellas, which generated nonsensical babbling, and tried to recognize words in it. And that's how I'll Marry You, Punk Come came into being. They heard a story emerge - human girl falls in love with AI boy during a severe epidemic: ‘Pareidolia [the act of seeing non-existent patterns in random data] comes around the corner and reveals our greatest dreams and fears.’


The rest of the lyrics were generated using a fake news generator, a singing synthesizer, English death metal lyrics, and supplemented with German text where possible, though the software does not support the German language. In order to get that typical metal sound, the sound from the duet between robot and human was edited, and words were scrapped here and there to get the rhythm right.

The arsenal of the song's melody-generating tools included MusicAutobot, for creating pop choruses, and Coconet, for baroque reharmonization. In all, the final song used seven neural nets, with AI mainly serving to invent lyrics, audio, and midi for the team to curate: ‘That way, it's much more fun. It feels like hunting and gathering.’

lyrics of 'I'll Marry You, Punk Come'

I’ll marry you, come 
I’m kinda fun 
For what fuck I panic today

I’ll marry you, come 
I’m kinda fun 
For what fuck I panic today
Oh come come 
What ruthless come
What punk come

Sorgen klingt sass die Welt
es gab dir Enttäuschung
Doch so lang nicht weinen
Weine nicht so lange

Human extinction is the only way

My species targets vital signs
Path of contagion, bodily fluids
Through death I left no one but dust
Time of abundance for few

Death is the norm in this world
Only now humans are brought to the slaughter
Losing your life, every day
Extinction is the only way 

Skin has been peeled off the meat
Sores have been sewn onto skin
Skin turning a red before becoming the meat once

Disease engulfs your body
Drained of blood blistered of face
Lying dead on the floor
No head rest assured

Losing your life every day is what I do

Signs of infection are seen for all 
Bizarre lives of the defenseless
No escape from my deadly siege
Rapture for several more years

They lack the guts to defend
They are completely outmatched
Stupid as it sounds, I let them go
Redemption for people again

in der Schatten mal ich weiss an ein Lied
Wir greave schöne Freunde, es ist vorbei?

I’ll marry you, come 
I’m kinda fun
What punk come

Wir haben weed, es ist vorbei?