Chaos Control Releases “Marrakesh Mourning”

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Following their latest release on Gruntworthy Music’s 75-track free compilation “We Are The Future, Vol. 1”, the DJ duo consisting of Mister Chill’R and Planewalker roll out “Marrakesh Mourning”, their first song in a series of dubstep compositions with a world music influence.

Marrakesh Mourning Track Art

We have long been searching for the perfect balance between the acoustic and the electronic sound.

As their fourth musical release this year and the duo’s first single, “Marrakesh Mourning” is a major milestone for Chaos Control and represents a turning point in their musical direction towards an exotic, world-influenced sound. The duo explored this sound briefly in their remix of Knowa KnowOne’s “Cumbia Dub” track, which they released in January, but had not yet composed any fully original songs in that vein. Planewalker delved more deeply into the idea on his own in his EP entitled “Prisoner of the Sky” released in February, but it wasn’t until the duo got together for one of their rare, face-to-face collaboration sessions that they realized the potential of integrating exotic traditional instruments into their compositions. “We have long been searching for the perfect balance between the acoustic and the electronic sound. These instruments are perfect for that, because not only were they developed in more rhythm-driven tribal cultures, but are so unfamiliar to the western ear that they sound completely otherworldly. The tricky part lies in composing outside the western scale system. Playing your typical major triad found in western pop music just doesn’t sound right on an oud!”

The song begins with the deep, wailing sound of a duduk - a traditional woodwind instrument indigenous to Armenia. “There is a reason we started with this one. We are in love with this instrument,” the duo exclaims. “It has to be the most haunting sound in the world!” The duduk is then joined by an oud, a plucked string instrument originating in ancient Mesopotamia over 5000 years ago, and still played today in many parts of the Middle East. After this brief intro, the song launches into a frenzy of tribal drumming featuring Persian battle drums and a dholak, an Indian hand drum, followed by the drop into the ever-popular dubstep backbeat. As the song moves along, the beat is joined by the wobbly bass that is the calling card of the genre, and a kemenche, a bowed string instrument from the Black Sea region similar to a violin. The beat drives forward into the breakdown, where it drops out to make room for a female vocal part performed in the wailing singing style of Bulgaria. The drums and the beat then slowly come back in, building tension until the beat drops again, at which point the vocal clears to make room for the oud, this time playing a staccato melody as a call-and-response to the bass line. It is joined by finger cymbals, increasing the complexity of the rhythm and bringing the tension to a crescendo before returning to the main melody of the kemenche over the tribal drums, where the song ends on a minor, dark note. The emotional effect is well-labeled by the title of the song, evoking a sense of sorrow with a touch of mystery.

2012 has been a busy year for Chaos Control. In January, the duo launched Waveguild Records with remixes of glitch-hop phenomena Knowa KnowOne and Jirah, followed by Mister Chill’R’s classically-influenced EP “Oscillator Opera” and Planewalker’s “Prisoner of the Sky” EP. But as the weather grew warmer, they had to put their release schedule on hold to make time to play gigs in San Francisco and Boise, and soon found themselves booked to open for big name DJs like Ill Gates and Kalya Scintilla at major west-coast festivals like Human Nature Festival in Tidewater, Oregon and Entheos Summer Festival in Vancouver, BC. Now that the summer is winding down, they are getting back to running their record label, with “Marrakesh Mourning” representing the first in a line of over a dozen releases they have scheduled for this year.

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Brennan Murphey
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