Mike Shannon Possible Conclusions to Stories that Never End

Mike Shannon Possible Conclusions to Stories that Never End
When it comes to Canadian techno, Kitchener, ON native Mike Shannon belongs to a loose group of Ontario producers that includes Jake Fairley, Pan/Tone’s Sheldon Thompson and Algorithm’s 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 Pole’s experimental dub ~scape label, home to talents like Deadbeat and Jan Jelinek. It’s an eyebrow-raising move for anyone who’s followed Shannon’s records over the years; he’s 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 Shannon’s down-tempo album, but that downplays the level of assurance that’s 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 Betke’s deft mastering of this record goes a long way toward bolstering vocals by Anais and Moral Undulation. Overall, it’s an excellent addition to Shannon’s 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 wasn’t a constant process by any means. That side of my musical personality has always been there, it’s just the first time that I’ve 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 it’s 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)