Boomkat Product Review:
Lifted & Beautiful Swimmers’ Max D pairs two sought-after EPs of mutant house and broken beats from 2014-15 in one spangled package for the dancers and DJs
Originally issued by The Trilogy Tapes and Off Minor, now on Max’s Future Times, the eight cuts add up to snapshot of a time and place that still resounds in 2023. With Beautiful Swimmers, solo, and his programming of the Future Times label, Max’s work was key to the unlocking of US house music’s grooves during the late ‘00s and into the ‘10s.
While the parameters of what became known as lo-fi house have calcified into tropes and meme-ification in recent years, back then it was a playground for the ideas of those who grew up with myriad strains of dance music. Max’s crafty take on deep house, broken beats, weirdo boogie and even Washington go-go held among the fruitiest, most distinctive, and enduring examples of that scene, as displayed generously here.
We’re talking brilliantly spannered machine funk in the lather of ‘Immunity’, and footwork jazz resembling Pekka Airaksinen in ’She’, air-stepping jazz-funk paving the way for his ace Lifted project in ‘Oshima Flicks’, plus percolated Chicago deep house meets go-go wiggle in ‘Circles Bubbles’ and ‘Calvin & Hobbes’ and a sort of freakish Detroit techno like Shake’s most wigged out jams in ‘Zsa Flex Cathedral’ to remind everyone of Max D’s creative brilliance.