10 Songs, 54 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

When Mwahaha hooked up with the Plug Research label for a reissue of its 2011 self-titled debut, the Oakland, Calif., band dragged in more machines and dosed its lysergic, arty rock with even more electronic textures. Adding the track "Das Space," for instance, puts another 10 minutes toward the band's electronic, experimental side. And it's a beauty. Clicks, thumps, pulsating synths, and distorted guitars unspool a landscape of sound that's somewhat lulling and hypnotic—that is, until the last stretch, when things get a little nutty. Tracks true to the album's original focus, like "Swimmer" and "Rainbow Diamond," show a band more in The Flaming Lips' camp; these songs layer electronic textures behind guitars and chugging rhythms, with winsome, hulled-out vocals delivering an echoing sense of isolation. On the grooving "Poinsettia," the sultry beats and electronic textures firmly drive the distorted guitars and husky falsetto vocals. "Love" is a beautiful track, feeling like it's both underwater and in the clouds, and Merrill Garbus (a.k.a. Tune-Yards) is part of the lovely chorus. With creative hints of Bowie and TV on the Radio in its music, Mwahaha is clearly an outfit to watch.

EDITORS’ NOTES

When Mwahaha hooked up with the Plug Research label for a reissue of its 2011 self-titled debut, the Oakland, Calif., band dragged in more machines and dosed its lysergic, arty rock with even more electronic textures. Adding the track "Das Space," for instance, puts another 10 minutes toward the band's electronic, experimental side. And it's a beauty. Clicks, thumps, pulsating synths, and distorted guitars unspool a landscape of sound that's somewhat lulling and hypnotic—that is, until the last stretch, when things get a little nutty. Tracks true to the album's original focus, like "Swimmer" and "Rainbow Diamond," show a band more in The Flaming Lips' camp; these songs layer electronic textures behind guitars and chugging rhythms, with winsome, hulled-out vocals delivering an echoing sense of isolation. On the grooving "Poinsettia," the sultry beats and electronic textures firmly drive the distorted guitars and husky falsetto vocals. "Love" is a beautiful track, feeling like it's both underwater and in the clouds, and Merrill Garbus (a.k.a. Tune-Yards) is part of the lovely chorus. With creative hints of Bowie and TV on the Radio in its music, Mwahaha is clearly an outfit to watch.

TITLE TIME
4:21
4:45
3:57
2:58
3:50
5:00
6:02
3:20
10:58
9:25

About Mwahaha

Mwahaha's music is often mischievous and unconventional, as may be suspected, considering their name sounds like the laugh of an evil villain and their instrumentation is strangely mismatched, with electronic drums, midi samplers, and vintage synthesizers alongside a traditional guitar and/or bass. The group was formed in Oakland, California by multi-instrumentalists Ross Peacock, Nathan Tilton, and Cyrus Tilton. With a proclivity for genre-hopping and experimentation, they began drawing comparisons from all sides -- from electronic artists like the Silver Apples and Matthew Dear to artsy indie rockers like the Grandaddy and TV on the Radio.

Mwahaha's debut self-titled album was released in 2012. Following a successful run at that year's SXSW and praise from NPR and Spin Magazine, the album was re-released with bonus tracks on L.A. label Plug Research in 2013. ~ Jason Lymangrover

ORIGIN
Oakland, CA
GENRE
Pop

Songs