Mahjongg are the sponge of the Chicago dance scene. Their new record The Long Shadow Of The Paper Tiger will get the pedestrian Talking Heads and afro-beat comparisons, which are warranted, but it goes deeper than that.
“Miami Knight” is synth-strong and punchy with esoteric ruminations chanted beneath the junkyard rhythms. After an auctioneer-speed “everybodygetup” an off beat snare further complicates the piling sounds and it becomes difficult to discern whether Mahjongg is interested in bringing people to the dance floor at all. That is, if you hear “Miami Knight” out of context. Wedged between opener “Gooble” and “Grooverider Free” on its new record, “Miami Knight” is a fleeting opportunity to glimpse the rest of The Long Shadow Of The Paper Tiger.
Mahjongg is calling its style Chicagotronics, but using that phrase sans irony and humor is damn near impossible. My guess is Mahjongg is hoping the phrase is used ad nauseam, causing them to giggle secretly at its existence. Not falling for that old trick, fellas.
The Long Shadow Of The Paper Tiger is out July 20 on K Records.