Breakmaster Cylinder mashes up Gimlet Media and it’s something that will never get boring!
Breakmaster Cylinder is mysterious. If you try and find out who s/he is online you’ll end up reading Reddit and social media posts that theorise, and philosophise BMC’s true identity. While this is a noble pastime, it doesn’t get you to the answer of who BMC is. I have friends who think it’s an AKA of a big named producer, others have romanticised that it’s a Moondog type figure, and a few think it’s just someone who has a 9-5 and makes beats on the side. Whatever the answer ends up being doesn’t detract from one fundamental truth. Breakmaster Cylinder makes amazing music.
On his most recent album LIVE: From Gimlet’s Executive Washroom his combines two of my favourite things. Music and podcasts. The whole album is a massive in joke loosely based around one of my favourite, if not my favourite, podcast producers Gimlet Media. For you not in the know Gimlet Media makes the kind of podcasts that make you laugh and cry at the same time. Their show Mystery Show is something that everyone should listen to as it’s full of life affirming moments, Heavy Weight is one neurotic man’s journey through life, Homecoming is an audio play about veterans returning from war and undergoing psychological treatments and Reply All features investigative journalism about internet stories and urban myths, and this is where the good Breakmaster comes in, as he scores the whole show.
So what does all this have to do with today’s post? Well LIVE: From Gimlet’s Executive Washroom is peppered with Gimlet podcast jokes, presenters and soundbites, while BMC makes some of the best musical mash up’s this side of My Name is Frank Butcher, A Stroke of Genie-us and the Grey Album. It isn’t that BMC just sloppily puts an acapella and an instrumental together, oh no, BMC seamlessly combines multiple songs in a way that feels more like a mini-mix and sprinkles Gimlet samples over everything to give it a cohesion. The stand out track is Super Death Support. This combines two amazing things, Death Grips and a segment about solving people’s internet problems. This is more than saying “Have you restarted your computer?”.
The track opens with Reply All host PJ Vogt and Alex Goldman explain the premise of the segment, then BMC’s theme kicks all, but its far more 8-bit and glitch than it has any right to be. If this was all the same was it would be quality, but then MC Ride’s vocals kick in. Instead of the music getting heavier, as Ride’s aggressive flows, the music keeps on the same playful nature, in fact in places it gets more fun. Alex and PJ appear again a few times, but it’s the backing track that is the main event.
So what have we learnt? Mash up’s are still cool. Don’t mess with MC Ride. Gimlet Media is the place we all want to work, call me Alex Blumberg. And we still don’t know who Breakmaster Cylinder is. But I’m ok about this, as it’s nice to have some mysteries in the world that can’t be solved by a few lazy keystrokes and web searches.