Joy Orbison, Hyph Mngo

[Hotflush Recordings]

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Hype can be a funny thing. Why are some tracks hyped while others slide under the radar? For one of 2009’s most talked about tracks, look no further than “Hyph Mngo” (hype is even in the name, sort of). Forthcoming on one of the hottest labels around, canned by numerous DJs, and even the subject of an entire column on Pitchfork, the hype surround “Hyph Mngo” has been immense, to be sure. But does it measure up?

New producer Joy Orbison is behind the oddly-named record, but “Hyph Mngo” sounds like the doings of a vet and slots nicely in with the Hotflush sound. The first moments of the track are some of the best, with cavernous melodies and filtered white noise and voices setting a wistful tone. Broken beats and pitched-up vocal hooks complete the picture, and the result is a fiendishly good slice of 2-stepping dubstep. As one of “Wet Look” thickens the synth lines and adds a dose of UK funky to the beat. The pitched-down vocal snippet repeats “I’m falling…” as the synth progression seems likely to topple over at any point under its weight. Both sides amount to another hit for Hotflush in a long string of great releases, but one wonders why was this release garnered so much hyped compared to its predecessors by Pangaea, Untold and Sigha. The potent hook of “Hyph Mngo,” its near speed garage vocals, make for perhaps the most accessible and poppy track in the Hotflush discography. It’s also worth mentioning that the EP has been floating around for ages and still hasn’t received its official vinyl release, fomenting anticipation for the title track’s sugary embrace. Whatever the reason, Joy Orbison has quickly established himself as a name to watch out for.

vandaler  on September 3, 2009 at 1:34 AM


jb  on September 3, 2009 at 10:20 AM

awesome tune! something that is here to stay!

harpomarx42  on September 3, 2009 at 10:39 AM

I disagree.

Colin Shields  on September 3, 2009 at 3:15 PM

To me, there are a few tracks around at the minute that are really expanding the sonic possibilities of cukaftbam (contemporary U.K. associated forward thinking bass music!) Untold, Stop What You’re Doing, James Blake remix is another. For both, there is, in some senses, not that much going on rhythmically, or any other way that makes them feel explicitly innovative or experimental.

Heard on small speakers, I can see why some are dismissing the excitement with which these tunes have been received. Heard on big speakers, the force and freshness of the melodies on both these tracks can be something else entirely. I admit not being the most sober at the time, but hearing the James Blake remix especially made me feel that we may be onto the tip of something very big indeed!

dapperdan  on September 3, 2009 at 5:20 PM
jakorabane  on September 8, 2009 at 9:25 PM

too much hype! this is regular 2 step affair..
said it on RA ..can’t understand why UK electronic music in recent years is HYPED so much??!! it’s getting ridiculous.. the music is just ok… i mean compare this to Adam F [late 90s] or even some of the brilliant cross genre tracks on Soul:r ..all those kinda go under the radar

Paul Sylvester  on January 29, 2010 at 8:49 AM

This song is posetively awsome!!!


Joy Orbison, Ellipsis | Little White Earbuds  on June 21, 2012 at 10:02 AM

[…] over months of fleeting contact. Joy Orbison, “Ellipsis”But as Chris Miller asked in his “Hyph Mngo” review back in 2009, why is our enthusiasm for Joy Orbison so outsized compared to what we express for his […]

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