The story goes that Off The Meds was created after a party a few years ago. Fitting that ethos, this is the type of music that fits with a dingy basement rave. Blending bubbling sub bass, hip-house, guttural, Zulu-Tsotsitaal-English and thumping techno, the foursome were molded by the Stockholm club scene, seemingly for the club stage.
Off The Meds is the combination of South African artist Kamohelo Khoaripe and Swedish producers Carli Löf, Måns Glaeser, and Adrian Lux. A freestyle by Khoaripe was played for Lux, Glaeser and Löf in a studio in Sweden and they invited him to join them to make some music. This resulted in “Currency Low,” a bonus track on this album originally released in 2018. This partnership flourished into their debut album that was released last week.
The combination of murky warehouse and foggy techno beats with Khoaripe’s deep vocals makes for a record that feel nostalgic to a time of dancing in those sweaty, dark places. They weave together different types of beats and vocals to keep things interesting, but never lose focus on what is important – the dancefoor. There is the uptempo and frenetic “Wena” that mirrors what we hear at the end of the record.
“Factory Workers” is ode to those who really provide value in the economy – the workers and the ability to let loose. There are other songs that are a little less in your face like the more subdued, whispering, lights down low “Vice Versa.” It eventually closes out with the skittering piece of breaks and jungle, the aptly “Belter.”
This is an album to dance around your house or apartment furiously. It can feel as whacked out as the cover art would suggest, like a person at the end of a weekend bender, keeping their energy alive, but accepting the darkness of the times ahead. Off The Meds is a welcome addition to our end of days soundtrack with the dark winter months ahead.