Group Modular is the library-ish outfit of psych connoisseur Markey Funk along with electronic music wizard, Mule Driver and they’re back with their sophomore album, Time Masters.
The duo introduced themselves 8 years ago, presenting the mysterious release The Mystery of Mordy Laye.
The legend goes like this:
Back in 2009 a man contacted Markey and insisted on meeting with him in order to give him some interesting music.
It was from a band that used to rehearse at his neighbour’s house, back in the late 1970s. They never released their track but there was a box of magnetic tapes with raw unfinished 8-track recordings of some rather extraordinary music, inspired by European library and electronic composers of its time.
The name of the band was Mordy Laye and you can read the full story in the press release of the record. Markey Funk and Mule Driver released this stuff but it’s rather unknown whether they met again with this man or not…
Fast forward to 2018
Group Modular returned six years after their debut, in 2018, to celebrate the International Synthesizer Day (May 23rd) on the behalf of Delights Records, with their new 7″, Black Ray/Acid Wheels. A single, full of library references, dipped in psychedelic synth horror groove. A quite crispy and delicious cookie. Delights Records is keen on pleasing our ears with such cookies all these years and I’m very happy to have most of the releases in my possession.
Anyway, back to Time Masters!
They’re finally back with a great new album, diving even deeper in the pool of library music.
It overall constructs a psychedelic, claustrophobic atmosphere utilizing brilliant -sometimes- cosmic synths that are backed -very often- with heavy drum-breaks, while the pulsating bass drives -at times- the rhythm section.
More specific, Time Masters drum parts has been made in collaboration with six different drummers.
As the press release suggests: “Besides their regular collaborator, Sagi Sachs, on two tracks, Group Modular are joined by Yonadav Halevy (The Apples), Matan Assayag (Hoodna Orchestra/Shalosh), Hezus (3421/Trillion/Left), Ori Lavi and Elia Yakin. While letting every sticksman shine his distinctive style, Markey Funk and Mule Driver managed to bring these six different personalities closer under the multi-layered umbrella of space-age electronics and cinematic psychedelia. Crafted over the course of 3 years and wrapped in artwork by Nick Taylor (Spectral Studio).”
However, cosmic epicness is not the only quality of the compositions though, as there’s a strong influence of 60’s – 70’s horror movies. It’s until the synths take a nightmarish turn, right before the redemptive end.
As deeply affected by the bizarre, psychedelic world they envisioned, I proclaim myself a typical lover of everything about their new record, from the under-the-skin nods of library music to the space age funkiness, to the sophisticated production.
I’m very fond of Markey Funk’s work either as a composer/musician or through his production works in Delights label. On the other hand, I’m not so familiar with Mule Driver’s work but I think his Blue Mask single is a mind-blowing moment of his discography that could have been worked as a foundation for Group Modular’s recent stunning record.
In their words, Time Masters is the duo’s love letter to the golden age of sci-fi animation.
Sit back and enjoy the ride!
- Time Masters
- Hommes de Métal
- Black Sphere
- The Whale Submarine
- The Phantom Mazone
- Ke I
- The Big Hunt
- Shaking the Grid
- Optical Menuet
- Ke II
- Everything Is a Number