Published Mar 01, 2006When it comes to Canadian techno, Kitchener, ON native Mike Shannon belongs to a loose group of Ontario producers that includes Jake Fairley, Pan/Tones Sheldon Thompson and Algorithms Jeff Milligan producers who tried to build viable careers in Toronto only to give up and move to more sympathetic cities. Now living in Spain, Shannon is preparing to release his second full-length album on Poles experimental dub ~scape label, home to talents like Deadbeat and Jan Jelinek. Its an eyebrow-raising move for anyone whos followed Shannons records over the years; hes carved out a solid reputation for menacing four-to-the-floor bangers that gleefully defy association with any of the trends that have come and gone during his tenure. Possible Conclusions has been called Shannons down-tempo album, but that downplays the level of assurance thats gone into crafting what could very well be his most inspired work to date. Free of club restrictions, he has taken only the shadowy atmospherics of his previous work and imbued them with more intricate, adventurous beat patterns, a broader palette of found sounds, and a more sensitive ear for culling melody from cavernous tempos. Stefan Betkes deft mastering of this record goes a long way toward bolstering vocals by Anais and Moral Undulation. Overall, its an excellent addition to Shannons impressive catalogue.
This new album is a major departure for you from the rather distinctive techno sound. Why the shift? This album is a collection of various things that I have recorded over the course of a few years, in various locations, with a very particular source of inspiration at the time to record those tracks. The process of this was a very long one in the sense that I was only feeling that sound every once and a while it wasnt a constant process by any means. That side of my musical personality has always been there, its just the first time that Ive revealed that side of it.
How was it working with singers, and why the decision to try out vocals in your productions? Vocals are a direct form of suggestion and are a perfect way to share a train of thought through music. Not much vocally electronic music really encourages any thought or awareness and I think its a quality that is much needed again in these apolitical times. Being an instrumental-only producer cuts you off from this form of expression, but allows you to connect with many different cultures on a different level but sometimes you need to just say it. (Scape)