Chrissy Murderbot has too much energy. Whether it’s releasing a mixtape a week for an entire year, or spinning an uptempo mix of footwork and rave, his output is simply exhausting.
The Chicago DJ, formerly known as Chris Shively, defines his style as “juke-rave-jungle-disco-tropical-hi-NRG-gangsta-dancehall-ghetto-garage-core,” a tongue-in-cheek take on his deep and varied musical influences. DJing since 1995, he started gaining notoriety in the underground in the middle of the last decade, releasing a set of jungle anthems (Ruff in the Bunny Fizness) in 2007.
In 2009, Murderbot released a self-titled record on his own label, Sleazetone. The album runs the gamut from rave-tribute, a la Zomby’s seminal Where Were U in 92?, to the juke and footwork of his hometown. Some tracks even combine the two, mixing chopped samples and beats with hands-in-the-air sirens and synths.
[wpaudio url=”/wp-content/uploads/2011/06/cm_musicsounds.mp3″ text=”Chrissy Murderbot – Music Sounds Better w/ Me” dl=0]
[wpaudio url=”/wp-content/uploads/2011/06/cm_mfhouse.mp3″ text=”Chrissy Murderbot – MF House” dl=0]
Chicago’s electronic underground is a case of a rising tide lifting all boats. Between the club hits of Willy Joy and Rob Threezy and the ascendant and influential footwork scene (typified by DJ Nate), greater attention is being paid to Murderbot, who plays in an undefined space between his peers. His latest record, Women’s Studies, was released last month on Planet Mu.
Women’s Studies continues where Chrissy Murderbot left off, with a new focus on tropical bass and bashment. With a host of guests that include toasters MC ZULU and Rubi Dan, Murderbot does his best Redlight impression on tracks like “The Vibe is So Right.” Still, Chicago is where his heart is: “Bussin Down” features juke luminary DJ Spinn on a shimmering bounce fest.
Writing about Chrissy Murderbot is as challenging as digesting his high-energy, seemingly boundless catalog. For example, I can’t say that I listened to every one of his mixtapes. However, I can definitely recommend his take on UK Rave, circa 1991, which begs the question, “Where were you in ’91?”