From The Desk Of Matmos: EBM Click, The Original Cumin Biscuit

Here’s the first thing to know: The album—all of it, every sound on its single 40-minute track—is played on a Whirlpool Ultimate Care II washing machine. The second thing you need to know is that Martin Schmidt and Drew Daniel, who’ve recorded a series of brainy, witty sample-and-sound compositions under the sobriquet Matmos over nearly two decades, understand with total clarity what a gimmicky project this might sound like, on the merits. But Ultimate Care II was designed from the start to be a less weighty composition than many other Matmos projects—like A Chance To Cut Is A Chance To Cure, which used sound samples from surgery clinics as its building blocks, or The Rose Has Teeth In The Mouth Of A Beast, whose songs are each dedicated to a gay public figure, often of some controversy—that inspired the duo in some way. Schmidt and Daniel will be guest editing all week. Read our new Matmos feature.


Daniel: On a whim a few weeks ago, I bought a box of these from the Pakistani grocery store that is down the street from our house. I wasn’t thinking too much about it. “Cumin flavored biscuits? OK, why not?” Then I tasted one and, wow, they aren’t kidding about the cumin. It’s pretty intense, and it feels odd and counterintuitive in that way that other culture’s guilty pleasures can just seem out of synch with one’s own (equally relative) sense of what sounds tasty. What you get is a slightly sweet—but not too sweet—digestive biscuit that goes very well with a cup of black tea, but it’s got a major rush of cumin flavor that really throws your mouth for a loop the first time you experience it. And then it starts to taste really good and you have another. And then you realize that you just ate an entire box of these things and need to go back to the store for more. So, be careful out there.