Friday, 17 April 2009

Mount Kimbie - Maybes (2009)

Mount Kimbie is a duo of relatively unknown young musicians from the south of London working together to craft electronic music. Listening to their debut EP Maybes, however, you get that gut reaction of excitement - the feeling that you've stumbled across something fascinating that has no real contemporary or equivalent in the current music scene - like that first time you heard Burial or Flying Lotus. Ok, so that's probably silly hype. And, to be perfectly fair, I chose to namedrop those two acts in particular for a reason: Maybes feels like a perfect meeting point between the two: lush, soulful but moody electronic soundscapes filled with the loveliest clicks and blips imaginable. The music is informed by all sorts of current electronic trends - dubstep, garage, hip-hop, the so-called "wonky" - while never quite conforming to any of them. There is also a decidedly downtempo, atmospheric feel to the music too, one that evokes the British trip-hop scene of yore, so if the words "Bristol" and "1990s" mean anything too you then this is worth investigating. The EP packs some really lovely chopped-up vocal samples - see the astounding title track or 'Vertical' for prime evidence of this. The beats are very inventive, using all sorts of unusual whirrs and clicks to create something that's really satisfying to listen to. One real highlight is in the last minute of 'William' where the track takes a sudden but nevertheless subtle tempo shift as the beat kicks in and transports the song to an even more gorgeous place. It is very tempting to lazily slap an 'IDM' tag on this as a way of pigeonholing it, but that is overlooking what this really is: a brilliant release that takes the rudimentary elements of all sorts of electronic subgenres and adds its own ideas to create a satisfyingly unique and emotionally resonant voice in electronic music.

I normally provide download links but people should try and buy this EP if they can. You can find details on how to order it here.

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