Since Are You Really Lost, released four years prior to Ay Ay Ay, Matias Aguayo's productions have become increasingly loose and improvised-sounding. This is traceable through his series of 2005-2009 singles on Kompakt and Soul Jazz, and especially the tracks on his own boutique label, Cómeme, essentially an outgrowth of the "bumbumbox" parties held by the producer and three of his friends in the streets of Buenos Aires. On his second solo album, Aguayo's worlds away from the rigid, minimal structures of Closer Musik, awash in a hybrid form of dance music inspired by Latin, African, and Latin-African rhythms, from cumbia to freestyle to kwaito.
This review was going to write itself: "Matias Aguayo killed minimal dead," it would read, this on the heels of Aguayo's 2008 star turn, "Minimal", in which he convicted his home genre of growing stale. It was an easy plotline: The man who helped popularize and expand minimal-- a seminal contributor, as one half of Closer Musik, to Kompakt's early discography, and author of 2005's still-underheard Are You Really Lost-- would, with Ay Ay Ay, re-order our expectations for minimal's future. Ay Ay Ay explodes that meme, however, with an album so far removed from Aguayo's past-- it's a record of maximal, fermented oddity-- that it borders on the bizarre.
Already more than established on the European house scene, it’s doubtful that Chilean-born producer Matias Aguayo craves a commercial breakthrough. There’s an inherent awkwardness to his signature sound that would likely prevent this, and besides, anyone who assembles their album in Santiago, Buenos Aires, Paris and Berlin – I’ll pause to let you sing ‘Pop Muzik’ to yourself – is probably getting by alright. Ay Ay Ay is his second artist album, although he’s been around and about the German dance scene for over a decade; most of its 11 tracks betray a desire to be simultaneously accessible and oddball.