Since he started producing music, Berlin-based American sound artist Jake Muir has been obsessed with sampling. His 2018 album „Lady’s Mantle“ was based on manipulated chunks of vintage Californian surf rock, and its follow-up, 2020’s midnight symphony „The Hum Of Your Veiled Voice“ was sourced from a wide variety of old records, and inspired by the work of experimental turntablists like Marina Rosenfeld, Janek Schaefer and Philip Jeck.
On „Mana“, Muir looks back to a misunderstood musical movement. Around 1995, a group of New York producers and DJs – including DJ Olive, DJ Spooky and Spectre – pioneered a genre-dissolving sound by unifying hip-hop techniques with ideas pulled from dub, jungle, ambient music and industrial noise. Badged „illbient“, it was a short-lived genre that felt like a high-minded psychedelic cousin of the UK’s trip-hop.
Muir uses illbient as the springboard for „Mana“, utilizing a selection of samples to inform his frothy drones and foreboding atmospheres. He ushers the material into 2021 by diverting it through his own contemporary worldview, attempting to recreate the hyperreal fantasy histories of Japanese RPGs (think „Dark Souls“ and „Final Fantasy“) and nod to sensual, tactile soundscapes of European industrial labels Staalplaat and Soleilmoon. The result is a magickal, sensory journey that’s as physical as it is representational.
If the illbient producers were encouraging a burgeoning experimental music landscape to emphasize the tactile feeling of turntablism and sample manipulation, Muir is doing the same with „Mana“. Each track heaves and breathes not just with his cultural reference points, but with layered, complicated emotions. We can hear joy, sadness, desire and anguish, obscured by disintegrating noise, hallucinogenic harmonies and sub-aquatic bass. It’s electronic music that’s rooted not in technology, but in touch.Mastered by Tangible Air Release date: 11 | 2021 Dnp Distribution
ReviewsHuerco S. aka Pendant (West Mineral Ltd.)yaktfv. big one! Marcel Dettmann (Ostgut Ton)thx A Made Up Sound (When In Doubt)ooh nice! i’ve greatly enjoyed jake’s muara and lady’s mantle lps, looking forward to a proper listen to this one. thanks! Doc Scott (31 Records)Thank you Stenny (Ilian Tape)Superb Texture and sound collage! dope music! Cosmin TRG (Fizic)Love this, thank you! Andrea (Ilian Tape)Simply beautiful! Etapp Kyle (Klockworks)Thanks! Shapednoise (Repitch)really sick record, thx! Roger 23 (Ilian Tape)Fuck Me Tender Ge-Zenkere! The Perfect New Captain Future Soundtrack! What A Move! High Class Ambient! Super Cool! Each Track 10/10! Etch (Sneaker Social Club)Hauntingly beautiful and sub filled record, got me feeling inspired Sciahri (Sublunar) Amazing ambient album…full support!! Konrad Wehrmeister (Ilian Tape)really happy to hear this man is doing a IT record!!
exited for the tracks Julietta (Inside Universe)Amazing atmosphere in there 🙂 I like. Ed Davenport (Counterchange)Incredible!!! Thanks for the music xx Eric Cloutier (The Bunker NY)All so good. Andres Zacco (Greener)love it all tracks. thanks Gareth Wild (EarToGround)Excellent ambient v arty Gian (Lack)Dope! Mitch Strashnov (Inverted Audio)Skee’s most recent album may be my favorite „dance, maybe?“ release of 2021, but…this my be favorite album period of the year. Been yearning for an ambient journey that’s unforgettable, and that’s what this is. Amazing.