Pop & Hiss Premiere: Tokimonsta - "Cigarette Lust" (90% Wake Remix)
Credit the Proximal Records crew for knowing how to make an entrance. Last spring's "Proximity One: Narrative of a City" marked their initial foray into Los Angeles' increasingly crowded beat scene -- to herald their arrival, they recruited scene linchpins Daedelus, Teebs, Take, Tokimonsta and funk kingpin Dam-Funk to help flesh out their portrait of the Los Angeles underground.
It was the sort of thing you couldn't ignore, provided you were interested in hearing an extensive survey of the talent that's cropped up locally over the last few years. Smartly interspersing the record with tracks from Proximal flagship acts Wake, Benedek, BearClaw, Lawrence Grey and label founder Sahy Uhns, they effectively put themselves on the map by assimilation rather than outright domination.
So consider its follow-up, the "Proximity One Remixes," Sahy Uhns and Co.'s attempt to stake a claim as legitimately viable upstarts. Remixing tracks from Strangeloop, Dam-Funk, Daedelus, Teebs and Tokimonsta, they tweak the originals to showcase their own mutant strain of heavy bass and science-fiction groove.
Tackling Tokimonsta's "Cigarette Lust," Wake offers a lilting tropical jazz that befits his Miami roots and his description of himself as a "product of suntans, booty shorts and of a lifetime of obsessing over I.D.M., hip-hop and 1980s electro music." Influences purportedly include "flamingos, pink and purple, Roland TR-808 drum machines, and late night handholding sessions on the beach."
The result is something deceptively funky enough to make a Golden Girl dance: aquamarine keyboards, ambient synths and crispy drums. The sort of thing that you'd expect A Tribe Called Quest to be rapping over in the year 2012. Someone ought to pass on Wake's number to Q-Tip.
Credit: Proximal Records
Download: (Pop & Hiss Premier)
MP3: Tokimonsta-"Cigarette Lust" (90% Wake Remix)