Mouse on Mars
Spezmodia


4.0
excellent

Review

by MisterTornado CONTRIBUTOR (47 Reviews)
March 6th, 2014 | 12 replies | 828 views


Release Date: 01/10/2014 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Juke on Mars

Since the mid ‘90s, the ever-prolific Mouse on Mars have managed to stay startlingly fresh and ahead of the curve in the muted underworld of underground electronic music. It’s a story that beginnings with the laid-back and krautrock leanings of their debut Vuvaland, as they expanded to the rich subtitles and micro-grooves of Iaora Tahiti, before warping their sound again to the constantly malfunctioning electro fever dream Idiology. This eccentric and supernatural world has since been dug up and exposed to a substantially larger audience, with Mouse on Mars’ keynote erratic eschews of modern electronics being explored by a new generation of producers. Despite this, Mouse on Mars make brilliant use of this homologous relationship between younger and older generations by utilizing the best of both worlds with the Spezmodia EP, as they continue to build upon their wacky and idiosyncratic brand of electronic music within the similarly crazed and convention-breaking worlds of Juke and Footwork.

Letting holographic champagne loose is the acidic funk of ‘Bakerman Is Breaking Bad’, as a fury of snares and hi-hats attempt to guide a screwball of knob twisted modulations. If hinting at inspiration from the TV show, this track would best suit a see-thru Dreamcast-era arcade cabinet decked out in strains of flashing neon lights, featuring bold and jagged polygon recreations of Walter White and Jesse Pinkerman as they gun down Los Pollos Hermanos mech warriors that are programmed to terminate them at all costs (yes, this game diverges from its source material … slightly). ‘Cream Theme’ instantly transforms the rail-line funk of its predecessor into a machine steamed and bubbling Juke banger, scoring gifs of 3D models and the furious fingers of hyper-scrolling midnight hackers with backlit neon green keyboards. Naturally the hard-drive overheats a bit as the title track is forced to carry a slower and heavier tectonic groove; gradually collecting various glitched, echoing, and hyper-repeating vocal samples along the way. In its final minute, the track ascends off screen and into hyperspace with an intensely melodic and wonderfully radiant set of synth chords that affirm Mouse on Mars’ rich sense of time and execution within the palette of electronic dance music.

The latter half of Spezmodia boasts two huge, overtly-synthesized bangers in the form of ‘Migmy’ and ‘I See Dizzy’, making fantastic use of the dynamic BMP’s, accelerated rhythms, and sampling of Juke, and the Chicago bred sub-bass of Footwork, as they wrap it around the context of their own pre-established trademarks; aggressive melodies, knob spinning disorientation, and flourishing micro sounds and subtleties. Despite Spezmodia documenting Mouse on Mars' attempt to modify and revamp a pre-existing sound, they reject any logic of trend hoping or bandwagoning the recent boom of Juke and Footwork, by creating something that completely bypasses the sea of both home and studio producers that have so hazardously swarmed the sound. Simply put there isn’t a weak link throughout Spezmodia’s five tracks, with each track representing a different mode and flavor of Juke and Footwork. It’s incredibly catchy and uniquely constructed music from a storied duo that continues to stay relevant and atop of the pile over 20 years into their career, as they ultimately collide their talents into the richest and most rewarding release from this sound in a quite some time.



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Comments:Add a Comment 
MisterTornado
Contributing Reviewer
March 5th 2014



4507 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

This is going sorely overlooked, seriously some of the best Juke/Footwork out there right now, and the best Mouse on Mars has sounded in years.

'Cream Theme' - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lt3jnsv6x7o

'I See Dizzy' - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=grP9tgjGVZ4

Hyperion1001
Staff Reviewer
March 5th 2014



18007 Comments


i had this downloaded but hadnt checked yet

god damn cream theme is good

ace review

Digging: Autechre - Draft 7.30

MisterTornado
Contributing Reviewer
March 5th 2014



4507 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I think you'd love this Hype

Phlegm
March 6th 2014



3796 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

mmmmmm time 2 dance my worries away

Digging: Wretched Excess - Away From This World

MisterTornado
Contributing Reviewer
March 6th 2014



4507 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

R.I.P. worries

CaptainDooRight
March 6th 2014



28321 Comments


Just listened to the following tracks:

Spezmodia - made me feel like i was saving someones life or attempting too by holding their right arm while they were dangling off a jump plane's exit opening, in the vision i was sweating but im not sure if that's possible with all this wind in my face

Cream Theme - gave me a craving to operate technical machinery

I See Dizzy - made me wanna take acid even though I never have before

Digging: IQ - The Road of Bones

MisterTornado
Contributing Reviewer
March 6th 2014



4507 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

haha, thats great

Phlegm
April 18th 2014



3796 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

holy cow this is good, dunno why it took me so long to get around to - definitely my favorite footwork from the year so far

Phlegm
April 18th 2014



3796 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

do any of their other projects have this type of sound?

MisterTornado
Contributing Reviewer
April 18th 2014



4507 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I know Jan St. Werner put out a solo record last year but I haven't listened to it yet (I believe it's
far more experimental, borderline Musique concrète'ish. Which is interesting considering how
accessible and contemporary the sounds are here). He also records as Lithops which is experimental as
well. His collaboratory project with Markus Popp (aka Oval) is called Microstoria and they put out
some really interesting Glitch music in the mid 90s (those albums are Init Ding and
_snd, both definitely work checking out). But yeah nothing footwork'y, although Mouse on Mars'
mini album WOW from two years ago has some contemporary bass sounds that was working up to this.

And ya this EP is going overlooked like no other.

Phlegm
April 18th 2014



3796 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Awesome, thanks for the insight fam. I've been drawn in by the cover of _snd AND there's a youtube link (hell yeah) so i'm gonna add it to my tabs and work my way down to it throughout the evenin


while i've got ya on hold, any other juke releases worth peeping from this year so far? I've only heard a couple OK Teklife comps among some other average EPs, merci in advance

MisterTornado
Contributing Reviewer
April 18th 2014



4507 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Ugh the cover of _snd puts me in a trance. It's so shockingly everyday yet beautiful (weirdly Ferraro-esque too, and it was released a decade before he started). Haven't heard much else good Footwork/Juke this year to be honest, although GUNGE's ÜBRMNSCH-BLWY-PLX is an interesting take on maximization within contemporary bass music. And of course the new Saint Pepsi EP has some sleek Footwork vibes.



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