monday mixtape: Becker & mukai
Since 2016, friends and producers Jean-Gabriel Becker and Susumu Mukai have been meeting for regular collaborative recording sessions at Sounds And Sons studio in Shoreditch.
Susumu Mukai, originally from Kanagawa, Japan, has been involved in diverse projects such as the über-group Zongamin (together with Will Sweeney, who's still doing lots of his artworks), Stalactite and Off World as producer and multi-instrumentalist. Mukai is also a member of bands including Fimber Bravo, Vanishing Twin and Floating Points.
Jean-Gabriel Becker, originally from Paris, France, has been writing music under various names and in numerous projects, from Jeanga And George and Economy Wolf to Lux Prima to name only a few. He also composes extensively for films and television under his own name.
Their recording sessions typically unfold as a musical dialogue between the duo –open-ended, discovering the sounds as they revealed themselves in an organic way.
Those sessions started as experimental and improvisational and typically evolved as the duo program and perform live on various electronic instruments, as well as guitars and other more unusual acoustic instruments, like trombone or exotic percussions…
Tell us a bit about your inspiration for the mix
Our inspiration for the mix came from our need for escapism. Our music is general very open to the world and, we hope, provides a window to another place, but in these times of seclusion, escapism seems especially appealing. The music we selected lures the listener to another place in the world, in their mind, in time maybe too...
How did the new EP come together?
Typically, we spend a couple of sessions altogether in the studio and record ideas and sounds. We then work separately at creating the bulk of the tracks from those and gather for another recording session... This time we invited Fimber Bravo and Anita Cualega so they could bring a bit of themselves to the EP.
Why is collaboration important to you?
Generally speaking, we find it a very rewarding experience.
More specifically, we love working with our friends from Auf Togo. Our ways of working are very complementary and we all find something refreshing and eye-opening in the process... Sasa works a lot with samples and patterns whereas we typically a lot of our work comes from jamming in the studio, so in this case, it takes all of us a little out of our comfort zone and. creates a space where we can really contribute ideas...
Fimber Bravo has been a great friend and collaborator of Susumu's and it was great to spend some time with him in the studio. It was also great tom explore a more song-based approach with Anita Cualega.
Those collaborations enable us to watch our own music evolve and it's very pleasant.
What's next for Becker & Mukai?
We're working on a new EP of more club-oriented music that should be released later in the summer, and also have another collaboration, a little extra to the remix album we released in January that we're very excited about
01. AUF TOGO MEETS BECKER & MUKAI - TROPIQUE DU CAPRICORNE
02. AFRICAN PROJECT - ETHNO BEAT (AFRO VERSION)
03. ORIGINAL BEAST - GRACE JONES
04. MERMAID CHUNKY - GEMINI GIRLS
05. HOLY TONGUE - MISINAI
06. DISCONNECTION - BALI HA’I
07. POLORCORP - GNAWA (DOMBRANCE REMIX)
08. STRAPONTIN & ZILLAS ON ACID - LUBIE
09. ZONGAMIN - NONSTOP OUTRO - T.I.M.E.
10. AUNTIE FLO - KABSA
11. IN THE MOUNTAINS - IN THE MOUNTAINS 6
12. ABEL RAY - LAST EXIT TO TRANSKEI
13. MR. FINGERS - NODYAHED
14. ROMARE - SUNSHINE
15. ROY BUDD - MC/M11
foto by Marin Dumard
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