Absorbing the earnestly-nervous urgency of Thom Yorke’s rhythms, Modeselektor dial in a perfect collaboration on “Shipwreck,” a highlight from their latest full-length. Tony T. Datis directs the music video adaptation into a dark narrative. Wandering children set the scene, but keep watching as the cadence of the video begins to gather momentum; Datis finds his way into the phrasing of the music and the story becomes gripping as it moves on.
Thom Yorke, meanwhile, has quietly become a voice beyond his band or even his solo work, effortlessly stepping into extraordinary electronic collaborations in recent years.
And Modeselektor, for their part, have I think a real triumph with Monkeytown. I caught the duo in an intimate setting in Berlin, and was struck as always by their compulsive, sometimes whimsical invention – it comes across in their music, in the gleeful rapport they share together. That’s a fancy way of saying these boys enjoy messing around with music. (They also enjoy, in the show I saw, ripping apart the walls, fiddling with strobe lights, and spraying champagne on people. But that doesn’t stop them from operating their machines beautifully.) The album deserves a track-by-track review – I welcome guest contributions in case I don’t get to it – but in one terrific collaboration after another, Gernot and Sebastian craft perfect, dance-inspiring songs. The PR says something about how they still “assault the dance floor” with songs with “structure” but that doesn’t sound nearly as good as it feels.
Have a listen and let us know if you can put it better. With Busdriver, you get a much … less dark … sound than the one above, with some of the signature humor Modeselektor manages to make eminently danceable. On SoundCloud:
Modeselektor feat. Busdriver “Pretentious Friends” (MONKEYTOWN) OUT SEP 30 by Modeselektor
“Shipwreck” EP release, with HD video, is out on November 4.
Shipwreck @ Monkeytown Records
For everything else: