Hudson Mohawke returns with a new album Cry Sugar. His third album, Cry Sugar, deepens his practice of producing motivational music for club goers-uplifting the debauchery and inspiring many through his own brand of anthemic maximalism. Trading in his lineage in dark UK back-alleys filled with Glaswegian antipathy for studio sessions with blazed Pavarotti-inspired tenors and drunk string quartets, Mohawke has dialed in an ongoing fascination with melding high and low culture. After all, he is indeed the architect for the high peaks of high-definition trap production that became embellished in the 2010s-a style that has been appropriated in everything from beer can littered college parties to Arby's commercials. American decadence, then, becomes a stage for his music to thrive-where the DJ booth becomes a composer's podium for him to conduct the tense drama between debauchery and apocalypse, the "mise-en-scene" of club culture in 2022.
Cry Sugar, serves as Hudson Mohawke's first work deeply informed by apocalyptic film scores and soundtracks by everyone from the late Vangelis to the goofy major-chord pomp of 90s John Williams. Cry Sugar also serves as Mohawke's own demented OST to score the twilight of our cultural meltdown. As the album's artwork (by Wayne horse Willehad Eilers) depicts-we are arm-in-arm with the Ghostbusters marshmallow man, returning home while swinging a bottle of Jack only to gaze out at the gray tempest of a coming catastrophe.
Despite the apocalyptic undercurrent, Mohawke foregrounds the iridescent vibrattos of gospel choirs, soul samples, and scat-sampling throughout Cry Sugar-scaling our bright human drama in the tumult. Known for his deft uses of fragmentation and deconstruction, Mohawke presents our fraught cultural moment as set against the quintessential backdrop of late capitalism-a tightrope walking between chaos and the unashamedly euphoric, between the erratic and the bold, the noisy and anthemic, the saccharine with the devastating. Cry Sugar becomes a testament of its namesake. In our most intimate, melancholic moments, something sweet and twisted emerges. A wry smile beneath the malice. In 2022, we cry sugar.