Mr. DougDoug and Mukqs – co-founders of Hausu Mountain, bandmates in Good Willsmith and The Earth is a Man – kick off the Mugen series with side-long structured improvisations focused on analog media manipulation.
On “Moses Meets the Upsetter At the Gates of Jah,” MrDougDoug (Doug Kaplan) spins a series of LPs and 78s through a pedal chain into unholy abstraction. Plucked from thrift shops and record store dollar bins, Doug’s vinyl selections thematically unite under the banner of “Bizarre Judaism”: a choir echoes in a cloud of delay; a Hebrew poem implodes into itself; spoken word Sabbath teachings transform into demonic gurgles. Each source that enters the mix fights to air its dusty history before sinking into a mire of abused loops. One part rabbinic ritual, one part bad acid flashback, the session finds Doug examining his heritage through the lens of his most beloved physical medium and maybe discovering “some meaning, some truth” among the hiss.
“Japanese For Children” finds Mukqs (Max Allison) pitching down the intro fanfare of an educational cassette as a chiming foundational loop, before overlaying oscillator drones, bass guitar, and synth sequences into a consonant ambience. Over the course of the session, Max traces one possible narrative arc of learning a new language: Japanese vocab exercises float alongside the accumulation of low-end tones, until repetition and mental overload spark frustration. As the tape’s words warp together and distortion seizes the mix, a piece of sound advice for a struggling student happens to catch in a short loop shouting out over the chaos: “練習” (Practice!). A union of many processes in development – Japanese study, cassette tape manipulation, improvisatory loop-based drone – the session serves as a glimpse into the strategies that guide Max’s self-education.
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