Mike Banks

Mike Banks

Real Name:
Michael Anthony Banks
Profile:
New school Detroit techno mainstay "Mad" Mike Banks has been an indelible force in the Motor City underground for nearly a decade. As a founding member of Underground Resistance, he's contributed to the '90s renaissance of Detroit techno that has rebuilt the stripped-down hardness of the music from its historic roots (and shuttled artists such as Kenny Larkin, Drexciya, and Jeff Mills to acclaim in the process). He's also reunited American urban dance music with an element of political immediacy and social commentary unseen since the early days of hip-hop, and previously never a big part of techno in anything other than an implicit sense. Forming UR in the late '80s as an uncompromisingly independent outlet for music imbued with a critical, at times oppositional edge, Banks, together with partners Jeff Mills and Robert Hood (both of whom, together with Banks, defined the early UR catalog), built UR into an internationally recognized and respected name. Although Mills and Hood left UR in 1992 to pursue DJ and production opportunities elsewhere, while Banks has stuck it out with UR, rebuilding the roster with artists such as Drexciya and James Pennington and continuing to record solo under the UR name.

Musically, Banks' roots lie in the early Detroit techno and Chicago house of the mid-'80s, particularly artists such as Derrick May, Juan Atkins, and Marshall Jefferson, as well as the experimental synth-pop of Kraftwerk, Gary Numan, and Yellow Magic Orchestra. Banks was a part of the vocal house / garage crew Members Of The House, and produced a series of 12" with the group before defecting in the late '80s to form UR with Mills (who he met through the latter's radio show) and Hood. Through that connection, Banks' music took on shades of acid and industrial, with a harder, more driving feel. More recently, Banks' style has gotten darker and more syncopated, with some releases recalling the early electro of Cybotron and Channel One tracks like "Clear" and "Technicolor".

The alias 038 refers to Codebreaker on Underground Resistance.
The alias 040 refers to Ambush on Underground Resistance.
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Aliases:
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Mike Banks Discography

Singles & EPs

HR1005 Mad Mike* Happy Trax # 1 Happy Records HR1005 US 1992 Sell This Version
UR-022 Mad Mike* Death Star Underground Resistance UR-022 US 1992 Sell This Version
HR1010 D-HA / Mad Mike* D-HA / Mad Mike* - Happy Trax Vol. IV Happy Records HR1010 US 1993 Sell This Version
HR1007 D-HA / Mad Mike* D-HA / Mad Mike* - Happy Trax Vol. II Happy Records HR1007 US 1993 Sell This Version
HR1008 D-HA / Mad Mike* D-HA / Mad Mike* - Happy Trax Vol. III(12") Happy Records HR1008 US 1993 Sell This Version
UR-015, 4W-291 Mad Mike* & DJ Rolando / Octave One Mad Mike* & DJ Rolando / Octave One - Aztlan / DayStar Rising Underground Resistance, 430 West UR-015, 4W-291 US 1998 Sell This Version
UR-054 Perception (2) & Mad Mike* Perception (2) & Mad Mike* - Windchime Underground Resistance UR-054 US 2004 Sell This Version
UR7-063 Mad Mike* / The Trinity (5) Mad Mike* / The Trinity (5) - Scalper / Burning Spear(7") Underground Resistance UR7-063 US 2005 Sell This Version
SID-010 Mad Mike* / The Deacon Mad Mike* / The Deacon - Attack Of The Sonic Samurai / Fuji(12") Somewhere In Detroit SID-010 US 2006 Sell This Version
UR-071 Mad Mike* Hi-Tech Dreams / Lo-Tech Reality (EP) Underground Resistance UR-071 US 2007 Sell This Version

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DanseSounz

DanseSounz

May 7, 2012
A true innovator who never sold out...

Long live the underground...
absnt

absnt

January 31, 2012
if i had to guess, i would guess that Mr. banks is quite alright with being "overlooked". he seems to be about change through music and nothing else. if your listening mike, Detroit music(It), in particular UR and Red Planet, changed the course of my life completely. It was the religious epiphany i had sought in the old ways of soul slavery. indeed, It ignited my soul and brought back my connection to spirit. It challenged me to shed fear and embrace my brother/sister. It was the soundtrack for my awakening to the truth of the archons and their programmers. Detroit music is, indeed, a movement for change. aloha
prettyboi

prettyboi

June 7, 2011
edited over 4 years ago
Let me tell you
prejudice hurts especially when its associated with the music
you love and the city you were raised in.It is for this reason
UR is in this war with the programmers - those kidz were
by the sight of 20 heavily muscled brothers who yes some were
gang members some x-members and now musicians,they were in-
timidated because the programmers taught them that all Brothers
that didnt have on silver shoes and didnt smile or laugh at
bullshit jokes and small talk were probably criminals ask
Mumia,Rodney King or Malice Green who effects programming
has on people.I am a very serious brother nothing that I do
or have done with UR is funny or entertaining,I am not a clown
and I will never tap dance on cue - I have never been pimped
and neither has my company,the moves and strategies that I
use are for one thing and one thing only - and that is to guar
tee that the programmers agendas and stereo-types do not
proceed into the next century!! Because it is these same
agendas and prejudices that nearly extreminated my mothers
peoples(blackfoot indians) and forcibly inslaved my fathers
Peoples for 400 years - so believe me when I tell you UR
some DEADLY serious shit!!!! there is very little for me
to smile and be happy about with the condition my people,
my city,my EARTH - MOTHER EARTH is in.All I can hope is that
music from our label can without words or explanations
knock down all the barriers (racial,economic,religous,etc)
that the programmers have cleverly set before us in order
to keep us from understanding that catergories and definitions
separate and with separation comes exploitation and profit!
I hope you can feel what I am saying - as I stated
earlier I am not very good on the net and I tried to xplain
as efficiently as possible what me and my label stand for
so that there would be no misinterpetations or
people putting words in my mouth.I am 33 years old and fully
capable of speaking for myself but I choose to use music
because men have been talking for years but always with
FORKTONGUE music is true and ultimately much more efficient
than all writtien language to this date - tribal people
have known this for thousands of years.WE are all tribal
people but some of us have strayed away from the talk of
the drum and they talk with words and languages that mean
nothing!

THE DRUM IS ALWAYS BETTER

-Mad Mike, 1995, Somewhere in Detroit
digitalsects2

digitalsects2

November 12, 2010
edited over 4 years ago
I must agree with "damnzenman". A legend of Detroit techno shouldn't be overlooked so easily. A large majority of his work isn't even presented here. Saying Detroit techno wouldn't be the same without Mad Mike is an understatement, he created it...

damnzenman

damnzenman

August 13, 2008
The programmers, who are hidden in plainsight, have done a great job. Not a single comment on Mr. Banks, who just happens to be one of the top 3 most influential, greatest, best electronic producers of all time, the others being Drexciya and Juan Atkins, duh.

Mr. Banks, the genius behind some of the best techno in existence, with soul, such as Galaxy 2 Galaxy, The Martian, Underground Resistance and many, many more. Created the most influential techno label there is. Head of the greatest electronic live band there is. Are you people really listening?

Programmers, we have broken your codes, your time is up, the turning point has arrived, the final frontier has been reached. From nation to nation, world to world, galaxy to galaxy, the interstellar fugitives will continue the fight against the majors, this is our message. Dark energy, illuminating electronic warfare designed for sonic revolution. The destruction of the order is in progress. We will find the inspiration to make the transition from a lowtech reality to a high tech dream like world, a free world. Do not be mistaken, fuel for the fire this is not, whatever happened to peace?

Free, as you wanna be!

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