Mix Mup & Kassem Mosse, MM / KM

[The Trilogy Tapes]


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There’s a strange little sensation that comes over you about six inches into this record: a plucked bass line ripped right out of a 60s surfer film busts though and you start to wonder if this is a new song or not. It’s strange because even though the visual cues are there, listening to Mix Mup and Kassem Mosse’s mini-LP seems like one extended live set, with mini sound collages soundtracking the breakdown and setup of each track lucky enough to get its name printed on the label. Those tracks happen to be pretty fluid themselves, stopping, starting, and rearranging their constituent parts on a whim, as if the accepted conventions of house are mere suggestions (at best) to these two. MM and KM are both incredibly playful and witty producers, but they only sporadically embrace the more unfettered aspects of their artistic selves to their fullest extent. Given the limited nature of this record for Will Bankhead’s Trilogy Tapes imprint, it seems they saw an opportunity to let loose and ran with it.

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“Bust a Move” does what it says on the tin, competently building tension like so much of Mosse’s previous work, but for some reason the downbeat seems to keep changing where its placed. Doubtless it’s just my mind playing tricks on me, but it underscores just how little MM and KM are concerned with club utilitarianism here. “Birds Flying In The Sun Like U Know How” uses one of the most beat-to-death vocals in sampling history, but given the almost square-dance stomp of the track it seems that MM and KM are in on the joke (I can almost imagine them smirking every time the sample is dropped). “MM KM End To Funk” takes its time setting up and then trainwrecks like an overconfident DJ’s first time ever touching vinyl. It eventually builds up to an almost pretty track, with downcast pads and a tumbling analog bass line, but that initial trainwreck is one of the funnier moments you’re bound to hear in a house record this year; and in a genre that has the habit of taking itself way too seriously, any kind of humor is rather refreshing.

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“Galagonmixdown” has all of the workings of a stripped-back deep-house tune, complete with piano stabs and cropped vocal snippet, but then some incredibly annoying video game noises barge in and the track just shuts down, giving way, conversely, to applause, and the end of the record. While you might not be so tempted to applaud if a similar thing happened on the dance floor, here it feels almost triumphant. Is it a statement about the unchanging monotony of a 24 hour kick drum? Or perhaps it’s a reaction to the refusal of most house music to shock or offend. Really, though, it’s probably just Mix Mup and Kassem Mosse fucking around, having fun, and occasionally taking the piss, something they do throughout this short LP to the listener’s advantage. MM/KM is the longest and most ambitious statement yet (on vinyl) from these two, and the quality is unsurprisingly high, yet it’s how MM and KM choose to spend their extended time that makes it a standout release.

andreas krumm  on April 17, 2012 at 12:17 PM

blecheimerhouse at its best !!!!

ey  on April 17, 2012 at 3:11 PM

Really love this record. I was actually a little underwhelmed by the samples, but it’s really great on full listen.

simon  on April 20, 2012 at 12:37 PM

excellent!

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