hudson mohawke

Hudson Mohawke, given name Ross Birchard, is a Scottish electronic music producer and DJ. In 2001, at the age of 15, he became the youngest ever finalist at DMC UK, the British division of the DMC World DJ Championships. In 2007 he cofounded LuckyMe Records, now a staple in the electronic music world and home to some of the most influential electronic artists in the game, including Baauer, Jacques Greene, Cashmere Cat, and Lunice. In 2009, at 22, he signed to legendary British independent label Warp Records and later that year released his debut album Butter, showcasing his brash, maximalist, sparkling take on hip hop. Since then Hud Mo has been on a years-long upward tear, releasing the Satin Panthers EP on Warp in 2011 and scoring multiple production credits on GOOD Music compilation album Cruel Summer in 2012. With a second solo album, Lantern, on the way, and rumored involvement with Kanye West’s upcoming So Help Me God, Hud Mo’s ascent doesn’t show any signs of slowing.

Essential Listening:

Hudson Mohawke – FUSE

Hudson Mohawke – Cbat

John Legend & Teyana Taylor – Bliss (prod. Hudson Mohawke)

For all of his merits as a solo artist, Hud Mo is perhaps better known as one half of TNGHT, the instrumental hip hop duo he formed with Montreal producer Lunice in 2011. TNGHT dominated the summer of 2012 with its earth-shaking TNGHT EP, and the duo became infamous for its raucous live shows and DJ sets, touring globally and stealing the show at Coachella and beyond. Kanye West signed Hud Mo to his GOOD Music label as a producer in early 2013, and an unreleased TNGHT track, “R U Ready”, eventually became the beat for “Blood on the Leaves” from West’s Yeezus later that year. Mohawke scored another production credit on Yeezus for “I Am a God”.

Essential Listening:

TNGHT – Higher Ground

Kanye West – Blood on the Leaves

With Lunice and Hud Mo’s individual stars rising, TNGHT announced their hiatus at the end of 2013. 2014 saw the release of Hud Mo’s Chimes EP, as well as The Rap Monument, a 42-minute hip hop track co-produced by Hud Mo and LuckyMe artist S-Type, featuring verses from 36 rappers from every corner of the hip hop universe—perhaps the ultimate posse cut.  His second album, Lantern, is set to drop on June 16 on Warp.

Essential Listening:

Hudson Mohawke – Chimes (RMX) (ft. Pusha T, Future, Travi$ Scott, French Montana)

Hudson Mohawke – King Kong Beaver

Hudson Mohawke is known for bright, sparkling synth pads, knocking kick drums and sizzling percussion, rhythmic lines composed of truly strange samples and vocal cuts, lead lines that sound like they were played on an old funk synthesizer connected to an electric fence, and, in my opinion, the best synthesized horns the world has ever heard. His music is unflinchingly weird and energetic, often over-the-top and always fun. In his productions for other artists he dials it back just enough to make room for a vocal, but his signature energy still courses through the tracks. He is one of the most prominent figures in Glasgow’s electronic music scene, which is arguably one of the most exciting scenes in the world and is home to artists like Rustie, Koreless, and S-Type and labels like LuckyMe and Numbers. His eccentric style has put him at the forefront of a movement that is pushing past the norms of underground electronic and club music and into profoundly exciting territory.

So that’s Hudson Mohawke: world-class DJ, groundbreaking electronic artist, boundary-pushing hip hop producer, GOOD Music affiliate, label cofounder.  Are you excited yet?

This booking is a big step forward in BCA’s choice of headlining electronic artists.  It is a move away from big-name EDM artists at a time when EDM is becoming increasingly commercial and homogenous.  Hudson Mohawke is an artist who has made a name for himself by finding his own sound and being uncompromising, who has drawn the hip hop world to his London studio by amassing his own gravitational pull, who has made everything from soul jams to festival smashers to Top 40 rap records all while maintaining his core identity, and who has proven that he can absolutely demolish a stage.  So what if he doesn’t have the name recognition of Diplo or A-Trak?  I have no doubt that by the time he steps off stage on Friday night, the Brown community will have committed his name to memory.

A few more of my favorites for good measure:

Wiley – Electric Boogaloo (Hudson Mohawke Remix)

Hudson Mohawke – Thunder Bay

Kanye West – Cold (TNGHT Remix)