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Album Review

Mungolian Jetset's first formal album as such, even if the remix collection We Gave It All Away, Now We Are Taking It Back had enough material for some band's entire careers, shows that the giddy merriment as much as the sense of ambition that underscores the duo's work remains perfectly intact. Schlungs kicks off with the shuddering burst, the roiling pulse, and the deep drumming of "2012: A Space Woodysey," something which almost feels like a reclaiming of 1993-era electronic experimentation as much as it does Richard Strauss, perhaps in a further nod to reinterpretations. With its sweet and jaunty lead piano and breezy vocals, "Bella Lanay" is almost the band's way around synth pop in any guise; it's at once in the mold and exists in a strangely splashy world of its own that mutates into a break with acoustic guitars and chorused vocals. Elsewhere "We Are the Shining" moves with the easy Moroder pace of his height as well as the vocal playfulness that's now a signature of the band, an eternal space disco somewhere in the glittering universe, while "Smoke N Mirrors" ends it on a nice enough, frenetically busy of course. For all the collective and wonderful helium hysteria to be had, it has to be said that the pre-album release "Moon Jocks N Prog Rocks" does steal the show in the end. A large part of it is that it could be Disco Tex meets Wild Cherry meets the Mighty Boosh, with celebratory and arch lyrics about stumbling upon the very kind of club nights the band would be at home in, but gone even stranger as it goes on. It's a sharp way of having one's cake and eating it too, and the no-holds-barred arrangement of techno pulse, vocal treatments, space rock synths, and more is spot on.


Formed: Oslo, Norway

Genre: Electronic

Years Active: '00s, '10s

Spouting a cryptically convoluted cosmology that's equally as daffy and inscrutable as their genre-defying prog-disco concoctions, Norway's Mungolian Jet Set draw their aesthetic cues from extraterrestrials, shamanic mysticism, and medieval Eurasian warlords, and their musical ones from left-field jazz, schlock exotica, cheesy ambient trance, Balearic electronica, and points beyond. Essentially the warped brainchild of Pål "Strangefruit" Nyhus, a DJ and turntablist who was active in the Norwegian...
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Schlungs, Mungolian Jetset
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