Bilious Paths, µ-Ziq's latest release, builds on the same paths forged by 1997's Lunatic Harness (Astralwerks) and 1999's Royal Astronomy (Astralwerks), proving that Paradinas isn't ready to rest on his laurels just yet (I'm sure he still has large reserves of inspiration left from past tours and collaborations with Björk, Mogwai, and Richard D. James, to name a few). The new album flushes out sonic blasts that hearken back to the days of yore with tracks like "Grape Nut Beats, Pt. 1" (and its unrelenting gabber-style techno beat), along with updated experimentations like "Johnny Mastricht," which has a garage/2-step-influenced foundation but slips in Paradinas' subversively cheeky humor. "Silk Ties" is another standout: An extreme dynamic is created with a dubbed-out track broken up by blasts of pure digital assault--a good one to ease your skirt-over-the-pants hippie cousins in with.
The sheer volume of Paradinas' output and involvement in the electronic music world (his full-length releases number in the teens, and he has countless side projects and collaborations) and his commitment to experimentation only improve his sound as he goes along. More recently, Paradinas has been focusing on his own record label Planet Mu, helping to develop notable talent (like Venetian Snares, Capitol K, and John the Leafcutter) as well as his own projects and collaborations (like Slag Boom Van Loon). Planet Mu now sits as one of the most productive independent electronic labels around, releasing a continuous flow of solid experimental music alongside Warp and Rephlex (where Paradinas got his own start), easily making Paradinas one of the most influential and prolific artists in present-day experimental electronic music. NICOLAE WHITE
µ-Ziq w/Him and Plastiq Phantom, Wed July 23 at Chop Suey, 1325 E Madison St, 324-8000, 9 pm-2 am, 21+, $10.