Obsolete Music Technology, Mmmmmusic

[Emphasis Recordings]

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Steven Tang has covered a lot of ground since debuting on his own Emphasis Recordings in 1998. Whether as Obsolete Music Technology, Misguided, or under his own name, the Chicago producer has tackled several sides of Chicago house and incorporated wider influences. He dove deep into dreamy techno and whipped up a frenzy with more jacking house, often finding the complimentary points between the styles. Yet in all that time he’s never made significant use of vocals, which is honestly somewhat rare for a Chi-town producer. With the Mmmmmusic single as Obsolete Music Technology, Tang finds a clever way to work the element which long eluded him into his established sound.

The title track stretches soothing synth chords over the pleasant jangle of hi-hats in a manner not unlike the best of Fred P., but it’s soon distinguished by an unexpected salvo of tightly grouped vocal syllables. The novel use of this deep, rambling sound — inconspicuously traced by a congruent 303-style pattern — injects a curious energy that propels the tune past more languid deep tracks. A brief, beatless “Reprise” follows, letting the spacious synths breathe. Chicago Skyway plays up the vocal elements as well as the physical energy in his “Pay Toll Mix.” Triggering different octave versions of the vocals forms an undulating mosaic stitched together by vigorous, steady percussion. When the vocals tangle almost as if by mistake, the drum patterns switch and become more bracing, pushing dancers further into the groove as more singular vocals ring out between the many hits. A second OMT original, “Distance,” is perhaps more expected but no less beautiful, daubing quavering leads on balmy chords and resilient drum programming. Tang’s continued development some 15 years into his career is impressive, and the strides made on Mmmmmusic seem likely to intensify the respect he’s earned during that time.

Wax'd  on February 10, 2012 at 5:50 AM

Great ep!

Joseph Hallam  on February 10, 2012 at 6:59 PM

Really good.


Little White Earbuds February Charts | Little White Earbuds  on March 2, 2012 at 11:02 AM

[…] Obsolete Music Technology, “Mmmmmusic” [Emphasis Recordings] (buy) 07. Maxmillion Dunbar, “Polo” (Extended Version) [Live At […]

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