“Honestly, he’s a cerebral dude … stays relatively tender on the bod.”
To everyone out there who has an “adult” job by day and a creative gig by night (as I sit huddled in the dark typing this), I have found your redemption. Belfast-born turned London resident Max Cooper is a paradigm of hope for all who can’t wait to burn their business casuals after 5 p.m. and slink into their natural elements.
Cooper’s resumé boasts an ungodly mash-up of talents and accolades, beginning with a Ph.D in Computational Biology, the field in which he then worked as a field scientist for many years. If that’s not enough to make the parents smile, Cooper also turned his extracurricular activity of electronic music production into a full-time job and is now touted as one of the top talents to emerge on the scene in years. He’s got enough remixes to the likes of Portishead and Au Revoir Simone to have placed (and kept) him at the top of Beatport and the Hype Machine and enough abstract original releases to raise the upper echelon of eyebrows in the electronic kingdom. The proof of course, is in the pudding. You may now press play (see mix below).
^^ For a taste of harder techno.
From this mixes’ inception, Cooper inundates us with an explosive yet maddening beauty. Think along the lines of the freakishly talented lovechild between Nicolas Jaar, Thom Yorke and Philip Glass. If Cooper’s scientific efforts proved fruitful and the three were somehow able to merge geniuses for one legendary film soundtrack, this would be it.
Cooper divulges a visceral journey that scales from the most guttural of places to the most ephemeral, through a rich mix of organic instrumentation and raw emotion, punctuated by angelic vocals. There’s a reckless abandon amidst the subtleties, and as the mix’s title suggests, it is within the transitions where Cooper’s unique energy emerges. There is then, of course, the track that starts cascading its way in around 40 minutes into the mix that I swear I’ve heard before as I’m getting tears in my eyes—or maybe that’s all just part of Cooper’s brilliant plan.
Tonight is a rare moment in Boston’s intelligent electronic music culture, as Max Cooper takes control of the decks at Middlesex for Make It New. This is a gift and it’s not to be missed.
315 MASS AVE
9PM/21+/$5 BEFORE 11PM, $10 AFTER