Brood Ma is the alias of London producer James B Stringer, a member of the Quantum Natives collective and an electronic soundsmith whose two vastly different earlier albums each twisted staple club signifiers – body music, dubstep – into otherworldly shapes. The Tri Angle press release for the third instalment in this series, ‘DAZE’, suggests that this is Brood Ma’s most deliberate dancefloor statement.
And that might be true, so long as the dancefloor in question is a Planet Mu or Rephlex label showcase night, full of acts wriggling through loud, challenging drill ‘n’ bass reference points and wonky, sloppy electronica. ‘DAZE’ is all about skewness. Nothing here is presented quite as it should be, making for a dizzying whip through everything from turgid out of tune horns (the brilliantly-titled ‘Goldman Sax’) to disorientating post-hardcore (‘Molten Brownian Motion’) to dirty, prowling sequences reminiscent of early Nitzer Ebb (‘Sex Compressor’).
Apparently ‘DAZE’ is a statement of sorts on the gamification of our lives by immersive gaming software and the blurring of our realities. If it is, we’re not sure we get it, but what we do know is that this album should come with a warning not to listen to it if you're hungover, or prone to panic attacks. This is electronic music both messy and menacing. Listen if you dare.
Words: Mat Smith (@mjasmith)
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