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RIP Mnml Ssgs
Rory Gibb , July 19th, 2012 12:53

Thought provoking electronic music blog ceases trading: 'So long, and thanks for all the sausages'.

Though its final post was a few days ago, word has just reached Quietus Towers that the esteemed and thought provoking blog MNML SSGS has now come to the end of its tenure, after releasing a final series of free mixes.

As with the closure of any respected written media outlet, it's worth drawing attention to - over the four and a half years of its existence they have been responsible for an unusually high quality of journalism, enthusiasm and criticism around the current state of dance and electronic music. Where blogging in many circles has increasingly become a byword for unflinching positivity - an unfortunate virus that's also infected many larger, more established media outlets - the crew who ran SSGS did things differently. Their posts were long, in-depth, thoughtful and often unflinching in their criticism, but always passionate. You might not always have agreed with everything that was said on there, but it was always a worthwhile and thoughtful read regardless, and fuel for debate at a time when consensus is increasingly a toxic norm.

The pair who were largely responsible for maintaining the blog - Chris and Peter - say in its closing post that it was always intended to be finite entity. However, both the blog's written content and its mixes will remain online to provide a browsable archive through the last near half-decade of electronic music - we'd strongly recommend heading over there and browsing through the mix series, or simply picking a post at random and discovering some new music. Their Q&A with Terre Thaemlitz is excellent for starters, as is Dave The Silent Ssg's missive on noisy 'post-techno' from last year.

"[One] incredibly valuable lesson I have learned through doing the blog is simply what is possible," says Chris in the blog's final post. "If you care about electronic music and you want to contribute, you can. It is not easy: it takes a huge amount of time, energy, persistence and much more, but it is possible for you to play your part. One of the great things about electronic music is that there is plenty of space to move and groove. There are lots of opportunities out there, and plenty of ways that you can make a contribution. And doing so does not simply mean making music or DJ’ing – the scene is reliant on so many other people: organisers, journalists, bloggers, label owners, and of course, those that buy the music and go to the parties. For years I wanted to be able to contribute more to the music I so dearly loved, but I felt I couldn't because I wasn't a DJ, producer or promoter. Eventually I found through doing this blog that there was a way I could do something and play my part. If you want, you can too."

Alongside the writing, the other important aspect of MNML SSGS was the uniformly high quality of their mix series, which gathered together regular contributions from close friends of the blog, as well as additional entries from a whole host of names in the techno world. As recently as a few weeks ago, Morphosis' new addition to the final few mixes in the series, a recording of a 3 hour set from Berlin's Panoramabar, made it into our list of favourite mixes of 2012 so far. And throughout the last few years some incredible music has made its way into the world via the SSGS, from mixes by Quietus favourites like Kowton and TVO, to regular contributions from techno hypnotists Donato Dozzy and Cio D'Or, as well as the likes of Ancient Methods, Silent Servant, Lerosa, Peter Van Hoesen and a truckload more. It's hard to pick out individuals, but to start with, we'd suggest having a listen to the following:

Donato Dozzy & Cio D'Or present J - a gorgeous, immersive live mix of DJing and live electronics in the wake of the Japanese earthquake and tsunami. Click here to read more & download.

Morphosis - mnml ssgs mix fnl - three hours of the Morphine boss doing deep, headfuck electronics and psychedelic techno at Berlin's Panoramabar. A DJing masterclass. Click here to read more and download.

TVO - ssg special - a two hour long trip of a mix by the Broken20 boss and unique British techno/ambient producer, which journeys across the board, from genre to genre, though electronic music's history and present. Click here to read more and download.

Silent Servant- mnml ssgs mx11 - excellent, proper techno from the Sandwell District man. Click here to read more and download.

SCB - mnml ssgs mx37 - A mix of deep, booming techno and house from Scuba's under his SCB alias, from before the time when he had fully established himself as a techno DJ. Some great tracks on here, beautifully mixed. Click here to read more and download.

"I can say confidently that most of the music we presented was really magnificent," says the blog's Chris in their final post. "In fact I'm quite astonished at how well it turned out. This is what makes the archives so precious. Now that all's said and done for the purposes of the blog, this is what I feel the strongest fidelity to. I'm very proud of the archive we've managed to put together, and the way in which, as a gathered thing you can put in the ssg box, it marks out a space in time that I am thankful for being a part of."

Both have stated that they will continue to be active in electronic music as a continuation of the projects they've put together via MNML SSGS. You can read the final post and browse through the blog's archive here.

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