Man, how time flies. When Shanghaiist interviewed Void co-founder (and occasional Shanghaiist contributor) Shanghai_Ultra in February, the first thing he talked (or rather, gushed) about was that he’d just confirmed a certain Robert Hood to play Shanghai in June. In fact, you’ll see him mention it in the answer to the second-to-last question.
Why was he so excited? Because Hood plays great music, but also because he can take credit for inventing a certain genre that Shanghai electronic music enthusiasts know and love. You know it as minimal techno. And if you like it, you definitely don’t want to miss Hood’s set at The Shelter this Saturday night. After all, how often do you get to see the inventor of anything? When’s the last time Willy Wonka showed up for a chat? Or Blossom Galbiso?
For those unaware:
Robert Hood makes minimal Detroit techno with an emphasis on soul and experimentation over flash and popularity. Having recorded for Metroplex, as well as the Austrian Cheap label and Jeff Mills’ Axis label, Hood also owns and operates the M-Plant imprint (including the two sublabels Drama and Duet) through which he has released the bulk of his solo material. Hood was a founding member, along with Jeff Mills and Mike Banks, of the Underground Resistance label, whose influential releases throughout the early and mid ’90s helped change the face of modern Detroit techno and sparked a creative renaissance. Infusing elements of acid and industrial into a potent blend of Chicago house and Detroit techno, UR’s aesthetic project and militant business philosophy were (and remain) singular commitments in underground techno.
Hood left Detroit (and UR) with Jeff Mills in 1992, setting up shop in New York and recording a series of 12″ EPs. Through the mid ’90s, Hood has focused on his solo work, setting up M-Plant in 1994 and releasing singles such as “Internal Empire”, “Music Data” and “Moveable Parts”.
Although his desire to remain underground has been replaced by an urge to reach a wider audience, Hood remains fiercely critical of artistic and economic movements destructive to inner-city communities and has combined his musical enterprises with outreach and social activist ends. His debut Peacefrog album “Point Blank” took Hood’s hypnotic minimalism to entirely new depths and territories, whilst his latest album “Wire To Wire” takes his productions onto new levels of musicality and sophistication within the world of electronic music.
Saturday June 7th: Robert Hood plays The Shelter, located at 5 Yongfu Lu near Fuxing Xi Lu (永福路5号，近复兴西路). 50 RMB gets you in the door starting at 10 PM. Shanghai_Ultra, Nat Alexander, and Ben Huang open.
Robert Hood Myspace
Shanghaiist interview with Shanghai_Ultra