Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Mitch Murder's Glass Cities

Like every music scene there's always the artists that are the cream of the crop, the artists that consistently release music of a quality that keeps raising the bar and redefining the genre. The 80s inspired synth scene has numerous protagonists that wear this mantle, but I believe everyone in the scene would agree that Mitch Murder is at the pinnacle of the music we love and consistently raises the bar with each successive release.

And with each release comes a certain expectation. An expectation of hearing certain sounds and experiencing certain moods. An expectation of listening to new aural pleasures, and an expectation that this new work takes us further down that same road back into the 80s. To be very honest, I'm scared when I hear new Mitch Murder. I'm scared that it won't be what I think it should be. It's something I'm aware of these days as after listening so much of his music over the years I'm reminded of the law of averages, and that often artists want to expand their musical horizons and not become typecast, or predictable.

If anything Mitch Murder manages to deliver the music I want hear, as well as give me sounds and emotions I didn't know I wanted to hear. I believe the influences and talent of this artist is something that is innately 80s. This isn't music he's making because it takes his fancy this month, or something he's doing while he waits for something else to come along. This is Mitch Murder, this is what he does, and (I hope) it's what he'll always do.

I had a conversation with him a while back, and I mentioned how I was into this music for the long haul, and in 10 or 20 years from now I still want to be experiencing and writing about new Mitch Murder music. This may seem a fanciful notion to some younger Synthetix readers, but to me the 80s isn't a fad or phase; it's a way of life and one I'm going to continue to uphold for the duration. With artists like Mitch Murder along for the ride, it gives me solace and comfort to think that no matter what happens with changes in music styles and trends that I'll be able to trust Mitch Murder to take me back to 1985 whenever I want to.

With his previous Mars EP Mitch Murder began ushering in beautiful prog sounds that blended beautifully with his already established ones. A more experimental and ambient array that made for an exciting new experience. This is the magic of this producer, he can make those 80s emotions and wonders appear and belong and exist perfectly alongside other elements while still remaining true to the decade. It's something I'm very aware of in his new Glass Cities EP.

The five originals (plus one remix from Sylvester) layer new dimensions to his existing pallette. There's a languid calmness to a lot of Glass Cities. It's a feeling that's almost organic. The basslines bind and tethers cloudlike melodies with drums and percussion forming  barely an rhythmic pulse. It's a mixture that balances beautifully, and makes tracks like Last Call infinitely interesting. Mitch Murder's previous daliances with slower atmospheric pieces felt like he was doing all he could to not blast off into hyperspace. This EP shows that he's developed this side to the point that it comes across as being perfectly natural and still being perfectly Mitch Murder.

Glass Cities includes more frenetic and glossy ventures with the classic Shoot The Core! and new The Best Of The Best. By comparison to the more ethereal tracks these feel like straight up rock. The energy flows like molten gold, rich with colour and tone but never pushing too hard. It's this fine balance that resonates throughout the five original tracks on the EP, making for an experience that is both relaxing and energising. It's a complete package which marks a wonderful new waypoint in the Mitch Murder adventure.

The Glass Cities EP is now availble on DhARMA Records Bandcamp here and it's an EP I hope you enjoy as much as I have, and still am.

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