Rasmus Møbius is one half of the production brains behind Melk, a duo that took me by surprise last year with a fantastic piece of dub-influenced hip-hop beats and well-placed guest stars. Medicine Walk is Møbius’s debut without his Melk partner-in-crime Anders Christopherson, and if it’s any indication, it was Møbius himself that was largely responsible for much of the dub influence. Medicine Walk sounds like Melk’s Sports might have if not for the guest vocalists, with even more concentration on a reggae/dub sound placed on its hip-hop backbeats. The unique thing about Møbius is the way he manages to create that sound—it’s not an organic thing played live on instruments. Rather, he cuts up synth and organ sounds and arranges them into rhythms that approximate the sound he is so obviously in love with. When you start hearing the cut-ups, they can sound disorienting and even distracting, but as Medicine Walk continues, Møbius wisely chooses to keep from changing the feel of the songs too much, allowing his listeners to get comfortable with his unorthodox approach. This means it’s an album with very few highlights (save, perhaps, for album closer “Mint”, which incorporates a little bit of horn-blowing in its latter half), but a consistent, highly listenable, and most importantly, original feel.
// Notes from the Road
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