I've been listening to a lot of dubstep recently, and have been trying to get a handle on what exactly "funky" and "wonky" are. And during my efforts to learn more about "wonky", this guy came across my path. My first impression on hearing the name "Hudson Mohawke" was, "If this lousy pun represents the level of creativity this guy operates on, this is gonna suck". And then I heard claims of his being Glasgow's answer to Flying Lotus, and my eyes rolled so hard I temporarily went on a journey to the center of my mind. "Yeah right" I thought, "like Glasgow could possible have anyone like Flying Lotus. I'm pretty sure hip-hop doesn't even exist in that corner of the world". BUT!!! This completely blew me away, no exaggeration. The last time I remember being initially so impressed about a hip-hop/electronic music hybrid is probably the first time I heard One Word Extinguisher, six years ago. Maybe I'm just in a good mood today, though. The album pictured above- Polyfolk Dance- is Hudson Mohawke's (sometimes known as Hudson Mo or Hud Mo) debut EP for Warp, and his most recent release. The overall sound is dense and hazy, glitchy, very multilayered, and brings to mind not just Prefuse 73, but also Four Tet, Daedelus and yeah, Flying Lotus. The omnipresent vinyl crackle that Flying Lotus and J Dilla put to such good work is here, but so too are an array of synths and other inorganic sounds. But the combination never feels strained or forced. I think so far this year, this is the most exciting hip-hop-related release I've heard.
Hudson Mohawke - Polkadot Blues
This is an older release of his, and I think his first proper release, the "Ooops! EP". It's his only release so far that features actual rapping on it, although as far as I know, all of these songs are remixes of older songs- the titular track is a remix of an R'n'B song from 2002 (about masturbation! daaaaaang). I generally prefer rap to instrumental hip-hop, so I'd love to hear Hudson Mohawke make more work like this or even produce some original beats for a rapper. Short, but great. And "Jelly 'n' Jam" makes me miss hyphy.
Hudson Mohawke - Jelly 'n' Jam
This is another older release, the "6x7" single. It's a little more downtempo and stoned than his other releases. I especially like the last track, "Star Crackout", which has a very pretty melody, and kind of makes me think of some of Aphex Twin's older and more melodic work, or Savath & Savalas.
Hudson Mohawke - Star Crackout