MUUI’s first appearance on Sudbeat sees him on top form, with five new experimental yet melodic creations.
The title track ‘Aiuh’ is reminiscient of MUUI’s recent ‘Elsa’ on Crossfrontier Audio, with the same combination of sleazy, low-slung grooves, interlocking melody lines, and unusual timings. It’s just as subtle and beguiling as ‘Elsa’, with unexpected key changes in the second half adding a really nice touch.
My pick of the bunch is ‘Sodde’, which I found to have both the strongest melodic ideas and the most powerful floor-presence. It uses a similar set of sounds to ‘AIUH’, but the percussion and bass feels more substantial and propulsive, and the melody lines are gorgeous, with MUUI’s distorted, metallic synths sounding mournful and working really well with the track’s bleepy, hypnotic hook. This is the best thing I’ve heard from MUUI in a while, and I don’t say that to slight his other work.
‘Taet’ is more withdrawn, with understated but cleverly timed hi-hats and claps, a pulsing bassline, and a rippling hook. It’s a really slow builder – perhaps a little too slow, in fact, with the first half of the track requiring a bit of patience. The second half sees the bassline get a bit more raucous, but of the five tracks on the release, it was still definitely the one that least grabbed my attention.
‘Uihue’ is up next from MUUI, with a brooding bassline sitting underneath abstract, electrifying synth licks – the effect reminded me of recent work by producers like HearThuG, Darlyn Vlys, and Third Son, which is no bad thing. The haunting breakdown really takes the track to another level, with a subtle, cello-like rising melody gradually emerging and adding depth and a touch of emotion to the second half. This is another fantastic piece of work from MUUI.
Finally, MUUI serves up a ‘live mix’ of ‘Unheard Gelo’, which is underpinned by a groovy bassline and cool percussion, and topped off with a synth line that refuses to decide whether it’s going to be deep and pulsing, or squelchy and attention-grabbing. This makes for a really compelling centrepiece during the breakdown and the sequence that follows, while MUUI’s fluid arrangement lets the track breathe. From a DJ’s point of view the track ends a little abruptly, but overall this is yet another example of MUUI’s creativity being really well realised.
MUUI and Sudbeat sounds like a bit of a dream ticket on paper, and I’m glad to say that the reality is just as good as you’d hope, with MUUI showcasing his uniquely weird but wonderful sounds throughout the EP, and especially on ‘Sodde’.