$20 advanced/$25 Day of show
Hudson Mohawke aka Ross Birchard has made the leap from beatmaker to genuine super-producer far more spectacularly than most. Long before Kanye West pulled him into his inner circle in 2012, Hud Mo was crafting MDMA-drenched, strobe light rap anthems from a bedroom in Glasgow. Many of these would eventually make up his legendary 2005 mixtape Hudson’s Heeters, his first release Hudson Mohawke Says Oops! (a cover of the timbaland producer ‘Oops’ by Tweet) and eventually his debut album for Warp, Butter (2009). These were kaleidoscopic stepping stones to future glory, equally informed by a certain golden age of electronic R&B and rap innovation as by the bracing freeform antics of prog rock and fusion jazz.
These early releases were instantly recognized for their crazed energy and ambition by a generation of electronic musicians who had grown up without the boundaries of genre, linked by the Internet and sharing free and easy access to an abundant trove of hacked music software. No sooner was he crowned the ‘wunderkind’ of these misfits than the calls began trickling in from artists seeking his singular productions. Then that trickle turned into a flood.
Drake, Lil Wayne, Bjork, Antony & The Johnsons, R. Kelly, Big Sean, Pusha T, Pharrell, Mark Ronson, Miguel, John Legend, Future, Rick Ross – the list of credits spirals into the upper echelons of adventurous hip pop titans. Hudson Mohawke had been knighted a fully paid-up producer to the stars and then he did what other pop producers fail to do – he went and had a few hits of his own. The fault lines started rumbling in the summer of 2012 when he and Lunice teamed up for an unassuming drop under the name TNGHT (Warp x LuckyMe). Within a couple weeks of it’s release a full-scale earthquake was in effect, brought on by the tear-out big room rap instrumentals imagined for their favourite party rappers Meek Mill, M.O.P, French Montana and Busta Rhymes – but even as instrumentals it became clear the pair had conjured up something special.
Charting at 180 in the US album chart with an ep of beats, and in a matter of months the pair were headlining festivals around the world, accidentally spinning off an emergent ‘trap’ glut – but wrapping their global tour in fine form when they were joined onstage in New York by Kanye West. West promptly spirited Hud Mo to Hawaii, New York, LA & Paris over a fourteen month period of sessions around Cruel Summer, Yeezus, John Legend, Pusha T and the forthcoming ‘So Help Me God’ album. From studios on the water in Hawaii, to the studio where Billy Jean by Michael Jackson was written, to Bob Dylan’s converted tour bus with Rick Rubin – the last two years have put Hudson in some of the best studios in the world.