Dom and Kai met whilst at Southbank University, where they lived together in student halls. From here on in the two developed their response to dubstep, a sound which is of their own, indefinable in terms of relating to a single genre or style. The post-dubstep sound which they provided on 'Sketch On Glass', 'Maybes' and now 'Crooks & Lovers' takes you on a journey through their influences, breezing through dubstep, post-rock, ambient, hip-hop, techno and UK garage just to mention a few. This is an album of pure originality and brilliance, a work which you thank for making the clown Rusko (who had the audacity to call his album OMG!, a crime in itself even before I was exposed to the terrible so-called music) look ever more ridiculous and idiotic.
As soon as 'Tunnelvision', the album opener, begins you know you're in for a brilliant exploration, with the tracks shuffling beat, soft percussive elements that attribute it a lazy feel and distant soulful vocals all contributing to the feeling of a hazy summers day which the track evokes. From this point on you never look back, falling straight into two of the albums highlight tracks, 'Would Know' and 'Before I Move Off'. 'Would Know' provides that typically luscious sound, with wonderfully smooth and airy percussion backed by low sub-bass and a shuffling rhythm, culminating in an uptempo riff 3/4 of the way into the track. My favourite track on the album, although each and every one is fantastic, is 'Carbonated'. The track starts with a nice harsher sounding synth, which is soon accompanied by a smooth prominent dub beat. The tracks main percussive arrangement slowly replaces the harsher sounding synth, completely taking over the track at the halfway mark to combine beautifully with the dominant beat and slightly increased sub-bass. This contributes towards the tracks lovely warm and soulful sounds, which is made complete by the incredible female vocal samples, which can't help but hypnotise you into moving to the beat. 'Field', the track most exposed from the album, probably is the best representation of what the album is all about: unworldly and puzzling. The track's intro slowly fades in a thrumming uptempo rhythmic sound, which suddenly pauses in the mid-section of the track and turns to softer sound, with a slow deep beat playing alongside an enthralling percussive arrangement and what sounds like the ambient sound of an electronic guitar.
'Crooks & Lovers' Tracklisting:
1. Tunnelvision (1:49)
2. Would Know (3:16)
3. Before I Move Off (4:11)
4. Blind Night Errand (3:22)
5. Adriatic (1:27)
6. Carbonated (4:19)
7. Ruby (4:04)
8. Ode To Bear (4:01)
9. Field (3:04)
10. Mayor (4:01)
11. Between Time (1:54)
The duo are also renowned for their live sets (they have collaborated live with the brilliant James Blake in the past), something I would highly recommend. They are currently supporting The xx on tour, and have just released a number of dates in which they will tour the US in September/October. These dates can be seen below. Check out Mount Kimbie's myspace page for more information on live dates, with more sets coming up over the coming weeks (www.myspace.com/mountkimbie).
23rd September- Victoria, BC – Rifflandia festival
24th September – Seattle – Decibel Festival
25th September – San Francisco – club TBC
26th September – L.A. – Downtown Independent Theatre
27th September – Colorado – Fox theatre
28th September – Boston – Wonder Bar
30th September – Toronto TBC
1st October – New York – The Bunker
2nd October – Montreal – Le Belmont Sur le Boulevard
This album is a landmark, the marker of a new movement/mutation in the world of electronic music. It's difficult to define it, and in actual fact it doesn't need definition, all you need to know is that Mount Kimbie are making fantastic and experimental sounds. Hotflush are most certainly leading the way with this experimental scene, which is providing more depth and feeling with its releases, as we have seen in releases from Scuba, Joy Orbison, Sigha, Sepalcure, George FitzGerald and of course Mount Kimbie. They are releasing great records ever more frequently at present, and long may this reign continue in the future. Please do listen to this album, its an absolutely brilliant experience, one you can't miss out on. You can stream the full album now at http://www.factmag.com/2010/07/12/stream-hear-mount-kimbies-crooks-lovers-exclusively-on-fact/, with its main release due for Monday 19th July. File next to Joy Orbison, James Blake and FaltyDL.