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mHz - Function [Important Records - 2020]

The common man would be hard pressed to see the beauty in math. Sure, it defines everything around him, even the things he feels are beautiful, but he would most likely overlook what is at the basis of everything. mHz (Mo H. Zareei) takes this to the extreme with his latest, Function. With all of his source material being generated through a custom-designed program, he takes math, shows the listener the beauty, and excitedly flaunts this by making it dance. Although still very invisible, the audio math on display has a texture and feel to it that tricks the mind's eye into giving it a visual component. Whether one sees robots in motion or just electrified waves, Function crosses over sensory barriers in the listener's mind.

Composed of eight different functions, each getting their own eponymous track, Function is a well presented expression of expressions. Trancelike and evocative, each offering here is mathematics at its core, then made visible and textured by various audio effects and rearrangement. While on the surface, Function sounds like something Tron would listen to, mHz takes control of the functions and gives them an energetic vibrancy that meshes very well with the modern world. Oddly able to get one's head nodding and strangely danceable, Function may be the first album in the non-existent "Active Minimalist Dance" genre. Crispy and alien, yet warm and familiar, Function thrives in a community of listeners born into a world of SID chips, NES soundtracks, and chiptunes. This isn't baroque, and doesn't try to be, despite both forms' heavy reliance on mathematics. All of the tracks here feature a different mathematical function, but there is a commonality among them that allows each to flow seamlessly into the next and create an intriguing and full whole. Function is best served as a continuous slab of electrified mathematics, but it would not be out of the realm for a track or two to be singled out for someone's playlist.

mHz brings an interesting concept to the table with Function, and has the passion and follow through to make it engaging and thoroughly listenable. Spin after spin, heads will bob while listeners go about their day, listening to and living in a world full of mathematics. Sometimes it's hard to see the forest for the trees, but Function puts the math at the forefront and makes the curious want to pull back the mask on the visible world.

Rating: 4 out of 5Rating: 4 out of 5Rating: 4 out of 5Rating: 4 out of 5Rating: 4 out of 5

Paul Casey
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