Mock & Toof - Disco Virgins
UK disco duo Mock & Toof have set alight clubs the world over with their inventive reimaginings of tracks by Hot Chip and even some classic Madonna. Out here for Future Classic 3D’s Cyclone caught up for a chat.
Mock & Toof are an act to watch. If you don’t know the Brits now, you will soon. The shadowy combo are putting their own spin on disco at the same time as Lindstrøm is pushing space disco and Jesse Rose fidget house. And M&T have friends in high places.
They’re hoping to release an album on the DFA label. But first things first – what is that handle all about-
Duncan Stump, aka Mock, admits that it’s nonsensical. “I wish it did have some kind of meaning, ’cause a lot of people ask this question,” he sighs, “but, honestly, it’s just purely plucked out of the ether – a very random name.”
Stump, the duo’s DJ, met ‘Toof’ – whose only other name is ‘Nick’ – while holding down an industry job, describing him as “the studio boffin”.
“I used to work for a promotions company, promoting music. He’d made this track, which he sent in – he wanted me to promote it. I actually said I thought it needed a remix. He said, ‘Have you got any names who could do it-’ I said, ‘Well, I’ll come in and do it with you, if you want-’ So I met him, we went in, and we did the remix together. The remix was OK, it wasn’t anything special, but we got on well and then we started to make some original stuff together. I got us some other remixes – and it just started like that.”
To this day, M&T are coy about their backgrounds. “We like to take a little backstage and just let the music do the talking,” Duncan says. “I know it’s a cliché!”
M&T created a buzz early with their re-edit of Madonna’s Like a Virgin, dubbed Lycra Virgin, on MySpace, but Stump is ambivalent about it today. (“There’s something a bit cheesy about it.”)
The Londoners went on to develop their Tiny Sticks imprint. Word is that they hooked up with DFA by sending an mp3 to their website. They’ve also remixed The Juan MacLean, Hot Chip, Scissor Sisters, Maps and Ladyhawke.
With M&T having aired just a handful of singles, remixing has consolidated their profile. They’ve pulled back recently to concentrate on that album. Before then, M&T will issue a single, Underwater, through DFA Records. James Murphy’s concern has first dibs on their LP.
M&T are typically classed as ‘wonky disco’ producers, but Stump, who enthuses about Fleet Foxes, wants their album to stretch beyond that.
“We have got lumbered in with that nu-disco scene – and this wonky left-of-centre disco scene – but we’re happy to be there. It gives the act an identity.
“We really love the disco influence, but we [also] love house and techno and folk music and soul, hip hop – all sorts of music. But you need to have an identity, so we do focus on particular sounds, I guess.
“We’re writing the album at the moment – and the album is very different. There’s some very slow tracks in there and some more Krautrock-style – it’s all over the place.”
WHO: Mock & Toof
WHAT: Play Future Classic Label Night at Civic Underground
WHEN: Friday 19 September
MORE: futureclassic.com.au / myspace.com/mockandtoof