Canadian duo MSTRKRFT (master craft) have been relatively quiet on the creative side since the release of two 2011 singles Beards Again and Back in the USSA. Comprised of producer Al-P (Alex Puodziukas) and Death From Above 1979‘s Jesse F Keeler, the underground Toronto duo first burst onto the scene with 2006 album The Looks.
Yet despite the breakthrough success of follow-up album Fist of God making the pair one of the most recognisable electro acts of the mid-noughties, a growing disillusion with an increasingly commercial music scene and label pressure saw the pair take an unofficial hiatus.
But now, just when all but the most ardent fans would have given up hope, the Toronto duo have dropped latest track Little Red Hen in anticipation of a long-awaited third LP Ә.
Proving that it’s been worth the wait, MSTRKRFT colour their Daft Punk inspired electro tracks with a more industrial pulse. With improvisational leanings and acidic synth licks, the pair’s latest throws back to earlier tracks like Looks and Neon Knights.
Speaking with Thump in late 2014, Keeler reflected on the reasons behind the pair’s 5-year studio hiatus. “We had a lot of influence and pressure on us to make something that would be more poppy, shit with vocals and stuff like that—which is fine, but it was sort of foreign to us… I guess we got stuck in a loop that we didn’t really want to be in. Then the scene of dance music that we were put in was becoming more and more commercial and it wasn’t what we wanted to do. Rather than complain we just sort of stopped; when we would get asked to play shows we would just say no.”
Well and truly back in action, the pair will be performing a live set at SXSW Quantum Collective’s Southwest Invasion Showcase next week.
Image: MSTRKRFT Offical Facebook Page