Monday, January 20, 2014

Music Monday: Mount Kimbie

I guess we can't really count Mount Kimbie as local any more, as apparently the electronic duo moved last year from Peckham to Hackney. But it was definitely South London that made them -  Dom Maker and Kai Campos met at South Bank University, and started recording at home when living in Peckham. In the Guardian's words, they 'emerged from the south London post-dubstep scene', and they have played out at the Bussey Building in Peckham among other places.

Mount Kimbie, Carbonated EP (2011)
- image is Peckham High Street, note Burger King on left.

Their second album, Cold Spring Fault Less Youth, was released on Warp last spring and received some great reviews. It features guest artists including King Krule, who was featured here a few weeks ago. They are sometimes mentioned in the same breath as James Blake and the XX, and yes there is that similar drowsy melancholy, space and melody.

The album was recorded at their studio in South Bermondsey, and also some of the time at the nearby Press Play Studio (Record Street, SE15) which is run by Andy Ramsay from Stereolab. In several interviews they have mentioned that the location influenced the sound of the album:

Interview:  'We wrote the album in South Bermondsey, which is the home of Millwall Football Club, it's a docklands area. It's all very industrial and quite a dangerous place, pretty run-down. I think we were also much more in touch with this area as the space we were working in, rather than being shut up in our bedrooms all the time. The journey to the studio was actually really influential, as you'd walk through Peckham where the old album was shot and all the photos from the front cover were literally in front of you. So then getting on a bus and going somewhere entirely different gave a real sense of a change in tone'.

- Passion of the Weiss: 'The actual area that we’re writing in is just fucking bleak. It’s not like a gangland or something like that. It’s just really fucking boring, just loads of industrial estates and the journey to that is pretty horrible. And it does have an effect on what we’re doing...You have like no reason to go there unless you work in timber shipping or something like that...You can’t really think of it as this beautiful concrete thing. There’s no romantic side to the area at all. That’s definitely made us make more of a cold, spiteful record'

Not sure how 'dangerous' South Bermondsey is, unless you are wearing a West Ham shirt on a Saturday afternoon, but the area they are talking about is the industrial estates around Ilderton Road which are pretty bleak. But in just those sort of areas where's there relatively cheap space that interesting things sometimes happen. There are several other recording and rehearsal studios round there, in addition to the ones already mentioned here.

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