Equiknoxx MUTEK, Montreal QC, August 22
Published Aug 23, 2018The sheer amount of bass at Equiknoxx's MUTEK set was truly something to be marvelled at: the walls shook, the beer spilled, and every molecule of the audience members was given a thorough rumbling. This was more than just a exercise in deep vibrations, though — much more.
The Jamaican band (usually a five-piece), consisted this night of two guys on the pads and singer Shanique Marie busting out sweet Caribbean raps through a diamond-studded microphone. She wailed, harmonized and danced it up like nobody's business.
All of this still sounds like we could be describing any old reggae band, but Equiknoxx showed that they are far beyond that with their MUTEK show. This was more akin to a dubbed-out version of Autechre at times, like a weird form of IDM just got run over by some Jamaican riddim and morphed into a new beast. Granted, you can see where their roots come from, but this was nothing like any form of Jamaican music you've heard before, or even really thought possible: this was 21st century dancehall at its finest.
As the show wound down towards the end (and the band played a couple of straight-up reggae songs), Marie returned to a mantra that she'd been dropping throughout the show, "Eat, sleep, dub, repeat." Those words, and that show, are going to stick with people for a long time.