There’s hardly a review, a memo or a feature which doesn’t mention Max Graef’s age or hometown (Berlin). But why is that so very noteworthy? Talent shouldn’t be bound to age, whereas knowledge and experience definitely is – and still, Max Graef has a lot to offer in all those categories, having already proven his skills last year with a few singles and then in January with the »Bummse EP«. On his debut »Rivers Of The Red Planet«, Max Graef presents himself as a mature yet easygoing jack-of-all-genres. As someone who’s still at High-School-age but already got his master’s degree in beat-science and sampleology. So much about the question of age. But what about his origin? Well, if you were born and raised in Berlin but still managed to stay out of all kinds of local constraints of ‘the scene’ and various trends, you’ll quickly attract attention. On his 16 tracks, the founder of the label Box aus Holz neither bends down to deepness or darkroom-suitability, nor does he plan to go for an acid-test. Instead, he goes straight to the border of Blaxploitation, stops right in front of it and then souls, jazzes and funks away. It’s a lot of cool knowledge, being wrapped up in even cooler tracks which couldn’t be more relaxed. The – only marginally improvable – record between hip-hop-grooves and house-sentiment is the best preparation for the summer that’s coming our way. It’s a strong statement – above all questions of age and origin.