The ever prolific Sirr TMO brings us 888 (INFINITY), a mediation for these particularly dark modern times. Seeped in various realms of spirituality that he’s been studying in recent years, his debut Teklife long-player is a collection of interpolations from his travels throughout the world, as well as at home in the streets of Chicago. Fusing ideas he’s learned from yogis, Buddhist philosophers and Sufi musicians with footwork rhythms, he’s created a fresh, metaphysical sound that isn’t restricted to any one era.
While his craft is derived from years spent battling and DJing throughout Chicago, he pulls from sound sources a bit outside those of his contemporaries, favoring jazz and folk to popular music samples. Opening the album up with On Your March, Get Set, Go, big rude horns take on spastic breaks, forming a lurking, mutant marching band. Tracks like 3166, Astral Traveling, and Ethiopian Soul Food use a fusion-leaning palette, with big orchestral strings, Rhodes chords, and earthy sax loops riding triplet drums and throbbing bass. Closing things out, System Failure is a testimonial to societal collapse in pandemic times, a chaotic maelstrom of digital terror where the reliance on technology comes to a violent crash.
888 ( INFINITY ) is an epic collage of the Chicago anomaly’s bottomless influences and curiosities, with huge, layered composition. He’s created something cinematic and lush without drenching it in too many FXs, innovating with the tools given to him, while withholding the integrity of footwork culture. TMO stretches the possibilities of traditional framework to new realms, not forgetting where he comes from, but not afraid to take things to new cosmic dimensions. It’s an album that reflects our current times, the good and the very bad, channeling both the grim realities and the healing frequencies needed to escape them.