Monday, August 22, 2016

Mike & Rich - Expert Knob Twiddlers [Planet Mu 369]

Scheduled for September 2nd, 2016 is Mike & Rich's "Expert Knob Twiddlers", a classic album originally released by Rephlex back in 1996  and now re-released via Planet Mu with an additional bonus cut of seven tracks which are formerly unreleased tracks or alternative versions of original tunes. Crafted in a collaborational - and partly reasonably drunk - session during the World Cup by Richard D. James / AFX and Mike Paradinas back in 1994 on quite basic, limited gear all of the ten, now remastered, tracks found on the original album do prove that both artists were in it just for the lulz at this point. Playful, oozing with Phonk and dabbling with jazzy loops as well as elements of Easy Listening and Exotica tunes like the fully loop-focused, Proto-Proto-BigBeat bit named "Jelly Fish" are both simultaneously stupid and pretty much delightful mustly due to its awkward theremin-emulating space bleeps and the ever repetetive main motif which is surely a brainwashing trap whilst "Eggy Toast" weirdly fuses Bossa bits and 70s Psychedelia to a fascinating effect. Further highly recommended bits are "Winner Takes It All", a super dope take on Electronic Future Jazz meets futuristic TripHop / B-Boy Breaks, the twisted, well-cartoon'esque "Upright Kangaroo" and the concluding  "Bu Bu Bu" which mixes up deep ass sub frequencies, piano-driven Jazz Noir, irritating vocals and space FX to a soothing (not soothing) fusion for those into Easy - and Uneasy - Listening alike. When it comes to the new and / or alternative cuts featured on the second CD of the album which - like all others - have been remastered from original DAT tapes we see "Vodka (Mix 2)" coming  up with a unique vision of exotic, oriental and fast-paced Jungle Phonk a.k.a. glitch based IDM'esque Drill'n'Bass minus the amen break, "Portamento Gosh" serves sweet, slightly kitsch-y and tongue-in-cheek Moog lines with a hint of vintage melancholia and so does the rich, melodic "Waltz" - a musical effigy of retrofuturistic romanticism, dubbed out. Furthermore "Brivert & Muonds" caters most brutal beats on overdrive which are evoking fond memories of the former Chicks With Dicks project or the longtime gone Anodyne label and are best described as heavily distorted TripHop with a dope'n'jazzy twist before the "Clissold Bathroom" provides us with more distorted beats snippetwise. Finally "Jelly Fish (Mix 2)" is on a faster tip, catering the original loop on a more lively, yet more dry beat foundation and serving soft Moog pads as well as the characteristic theremin'isms in puzzling split stereo before "Organ Plodder" waves our dancing braincells goodbye with a more Easy Listening, yet not necessarily soothing attitude. Good stuff for sure and due to its additional bonus tunes defo an album of some historical value indeed. Check!

Album artwork on Instagram!


Post a Comment

<< Home