Aphex Twin classic or Dud?

Message Bookmarked
Bookmark Removed
I don't think he is. I make some kind of music just like the warp acts.. and I can tell you this: boards of canada and esp. Autechre are better. he just no as classic as everybody thinks.

Ludo

Ludo, Friday, 12 January 2001 01:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

More style killing substance the way a small boy will kill ants with a magnifying glass in the noonday sun. He is attractive to some because of his videos, which is a nice way of saying he gets good directors to do his shit.

JM, Friday, 12 January 2001 01:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

If you judge Richard James on his videos I think you've really missed the point. Techno pioneer, innovator and creator of some of the finest electronic music of the last 10+ years. (IMHO Autechre, who claim James is their major inspiration, churn out dull, dessicated and tiresomely ornate sounds by comparison).

Stevo, Friday, 12 January 2001 01:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

The videos are really good, though. Though possibly that should be in "Chris Cunningham: Classic Or Dud"

Tom, Friday, 12 January 2001 01:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

I've never seen his videos (though I wanna) and I think he's classic. It's always a good idea to challenge the conventional wisdom, but in this case it's right: Aphex has made tons of beautiful tracks (though most of his albums are uneven) and has been hugely influential. Boards of Canada is unthinkable without the style established by James, as I'm sure Sandison and Es would tell you!

Mark Richardson, Saturday, 13 January 2001 01:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

I know hid made some very good tracks. and maybe he has influenced some people. but.. if you listen to his albums most of the songs are just crap. his videos rules and the songs made the videos for also. but I think this guy is just too lazy to make one good album.

Ludo

Ludo, Sunday, 14 January 2001 01:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

Does he have to make a good album, to be considered classic? (By the way: Selected Ambient Works Vol. II., The Richard D. James Album.)

Josh, Sunday, 14 January 2001 01:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

does he has to make a good album to be a classic.

yes.

the ambient works are cool but, not that cool to become a classic. he should make an album full of super songs like windowlicker to become a classic. or songs like flim.

Ludo

Ludo, Sunday, 14 January 2001 01:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

Classic. He made me realize how great electronic music can be. Just like Joy division, MBV and Fushitsusha made me realize how good 'rock' can be. He's made great records and he's not a one trick pony (RD James to selected ambient II).

The one problem is that a lot of people just buys his records and don't dig a for more records by other groups like autechre, Susumu Yokota and so on. For me he was definetely the beginning but not the end.

Julio Desouza, Sunday, 14 January 2001 01:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

The only Aphex Twin that I liked was "I care because you do". That had soul. The rest are just experimentation for experimentation's sake.

I mostly listen to psytrance/Goa, intelligent techno, jungle & ambient. IDM in general doesn't do it for me, it lacks emotion (at least positive ones).

Snow Dog, Monday, 15 January 2001 01:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

Classic. No contest.

o.munoz, Monday, 15 January 2001 01:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

The first track on "Selected Ambient Works 85-92" is, on a good day, the end result of the dialectic of all culture.

So, classic, yeah.

Tim, Monday, 15 January 2001 01:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

Classic. Just on the basis of the Richard D James album, the bloke's a genius. Add to that Surfing On Sine Waves, Windowlicker, Girl/Boy and most of the Selected Ambient Works and the guy's at least a demigod. BoC and Autechre have both done fine stuff but they aren't even fit to step through the door of Mr Twin's bank.

Richard Tunnicliffe, Monday, 15 January 2001 01:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

Oh, without a doubt classic. He was shitting out stuff in the early nineties which defined the genre by breaking it so often. Edgy, fractious, occasionally twee Ver Twin was where it was at.

You don't need to make a good album to be a classic (I'm not even sure you have to make a good single to be a classic) but Ritchie has certainly made some good albums. And what's this guff about Selected Ambient Works not being a proper album. Glen Campbell's 20 Golden Greats is a proper album, just because its a compilation does not weaken its claim.

Of course that make The Best Of Blur pretty much their best album...

Pete, Monday, 15 January 2001 01:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

one month passes...
Anyone who goes to the trouble of making their own weird space instruments out of whatever they can lay their hands on in order to realise their sonic vision is definitely classic

William Casper, Thursday, 15 February 2001 01:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

Listening to just one track can answer this.

POLYNOMIAL - C

This is one of the most beautiful pieces of music ever. Also digiredoo and analogue bubblebath. Classic, groundbreaking music

Andy, Friday, 23 February 2001 01:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

two weeks pass...
Aphex is by far the most versatile, creative and most advanced artist in ALL of Dance/electronic culture, that means every genre thats made with samplers and electronics. IDM is easy to make now , but you wouldnt have said this 6 or 7 years ago. I laugh when people assume theyre just as good as someone like an Aphex, 10 out of 10 times theyll play what theyve done with it and its nothing even close to the genius of Aphex. Now ofcourse everyone has their own opnion about this, but this is mine and generally ya can ask most djs or artists and they'll usually admit that Aphex is in a league almost no one can touch. Everyone from Bowie to Reznor to Bjork and countless dance artists will reckon that fact. I like both Boards of Canada and Autechre, and I as nice as for example BOX is, they dont even come in the total BATTING RANGE of what Aphex has done over the past 11 -12 years or so. Music Has the Right to Children is good , but IMO nothing groundbreaking and the last 4 tune EP "Out in a Beautiful place in The Country" nothing to write home about IMO. Autechre has done some amazing stuff as well, but they sound rather repetitious at times, neither BOC or Autechre have the emotion ridden classics as AFX's "Heliospan", "Girl/boy", "Alberto Balsam", "Peek","Flim", "UZ-US" for example. Personally I think that Plaid/Black Dog kick both Ae and BOC's butts in terms of emotion and the likes in their music. I would like Mr Ludo come up with a Girl/Boy track for example, if yer so good, then put yer samples online bro.. Aphex is still King of all......

PostModernVancouver, Monday, 12 March 2001 01:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

Definitely classic - though his cohorts Autechre and Boards of canada are good too.

I'm good too

charlie frame, Wednesday, 14 March 2001 01:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

Strange enough I find Autechre to be the most emotional of the IDM (aaarghh I've said okay, I.D.M.) artists. They have a fairly unique way of going for childlike melancholy without using the sounds of the 70s itself a la Boards of Canada (love em too). It's more like the sound nostalgia makes. It's a bit hard to explain but you hear it best on the 1st album and "Amber". Unlike much of Mr. James later output, for instance that irritating fartknocking "jungle" on "Richard James" album. Which is a pity because he had that emotional touch up to "I Care...".

Omar, Thursday, 15 March 2001 01:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

this Man are king of free minding music and thinking.I llicke that Man!

vinsents krebs, Tuesday, 27 March 2001 00:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

one month passes...
Aphex Twin deserves more credit than he's given. For me, it's the sound of 'england dreaming', a contemporary embodiment of our eccentricity, more evocative of the Britain I experienced in the 90's than the indie commentary (Divine Comedy/ Babybird). Listen to 'Cornish Acid' on Richard. D James for the quintessential 'english' whimsy- seaside towns, Martin Parr, provincial backwaters. (A suggestion for an artist who's speaking more directly, i.e. vocals, samples, try Martin - Male Caucasian, but unfortunately this'll date like a Blue Peter annual.) Folk music for the digital pastures that've been uncovered in the past decade, he's as vague and indistinct as the new avenues we find ourselves on.

Despite the rictus grin there's is a genuine warmth and humour to his music, though I'll admit that, like many Warp artists, the emotional communication is indirect, showing us how to feel, as opposed to telling us what to feel. But that's fine, it's not as if they're even trying to tell us a story. Concequently this kind of music has a greater resonance with me. But then what what distinguishes him from his contempories? Well, he's survived every micro-genre he invented, reacted to and re- developed his own back catalogue - he replied to ambient with Ambient Vol 2, Drill n Bass with the classical hybrids of Richard D. James, then stirred the already stagnant electronica scene with Windowlicker, which I'm sure could hold it's own in any ILM pop league. Still a genius, even with his head firmly up his own arse.

Did you know AFX has been corresponding with Beck for months about producing the Beck's album. It fell apart cause neither were prepared to record outside their own studio. I dunno, but that would have been fun.

K-reg, Tuesday, 8 May 2001 00:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

i agree. be sure to not refer to beck as 'the beck' on your top forty list though.

ethan, Tuesday, 8 May 2001 00:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

basically, just agreeing with everything k-reg said. i like the martin parr comparison in particular. always been taken with the ruralism in aphex. richard.d.james album always seems like a cousin of nick drake's bryter layter.

but i'm glad the aphex/beck thing didn't happen. even aphex couldn't make beck good.

oh, and to answer the question, classic, obviously

gareth, Tuesday, 8 May 2001 00:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

Just wait until Robin gets ahold of that "provincial backwaters" thing that K-Reg said.

Patrick, Tuesday, 8 May 2001 00:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

Yeah? So? I've met K-reg and I could tell instantly he meant it in good spirit. It's the sarcastic mockery of certain other contributors that I can't take. I'm quite happy being in a geographical backwater as long as I'm not in a cultural one.

The Parr comparison applies for sure, but not as explicitly as it does with BoC's "Concourse" and "M9" (but then how could it?).

Aphex is classic, of course. I actually used to see him as a model for making a virtue of geographical isolation as a means of artistically refining yourself, so it's appropriate that K-reg said that. I think "Richard D. James Album" is his best work, as well, whereas FWIW I think "Bryter Layter" is Drake's weakest.

Robin Carmody, Tuesday, 8 May 2001 00:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

three months pass...
If Richard D. James doesn't impress you, Ludo, then who the hell does??????!!!!

Sam Garcia, Thursday, 16 August 2001 00:00 (seventeen years ago) Permalink

one year passes...
Apropos of nothing: "Audax Powder" on the Polygon Window's Surfing On Sine Waves: The windows are down, I'm going to pick up my baby, my paycheck is still warm and I've had 7 gimlets. And we live inside Tron.

Sasha Frere-Jones (Sasha Frere-Jones), Sunday, 11 May 2003 20:26 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Fair enough, Autechre and Plaid are more focused in their visions and make arguably better music, but they would be nothing, absolutely nothing without Aphex. Aphex is a starting point, if you like his complexity, then get into Autechre; is maniacal evilness, listen to Boards of Canada; for his melodic brilliance, Plaid are highly recommended. But it is always worth listening to and revering RDJ as the pioneering force behind this music.

dog latin (dog latin), Monday, 12 May 2003 00:58 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

This is interesting because I have been obsessed with "electronic" music since I was about 10 years old but then I stopped listening to it for years. I thought I'd get back into it by seeking out the guy everyone was talking about, The Aphex Twin. So a few years back I bought "Selected Ambient Works 85-92" - listened to it a few times and thought, "blah". I found it totally bland and uninteresting and it wasn't doing anything I hadn't heard hundred times before. But I am willing to give the guy another go because I think he must have talent for people to be so fanatical about him.

Dadaismus (Dada), Monday, 12 May 2003 10:56 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

I think this thread has my first evah post on ILX (I think my opinions on eelctronic have changed quite a bit since then).

dada- you should get selected ambient works vol II. I heard the first disc of that last evening. its really wonderful 'ambient' stuff. great to read books with.

Julio Desouza (jdesouza), Monday, 12 May 2003 11:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

neither classic nor dud - just hugely overrated.

I think the general feeling on Aphex Twin is surely that he makes far better videos than records.

Most of his stuff is doodly nonsense..... some unlistenable, some rather good. Much of it sounds like he's making it up as he goes along.

russ t, Monday, 12 May 2003 11:06 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

great to read books with.

-- Julio Desouza (juli...), May 12th, 2003.

Julio: "Once upon a time there was a little bear named Pooh..."

SAW V.2: "Who lived in the House At Pooh Corner..."

Julio: "One day Pooh's friend Piglet came round for tea, and said to Pooh-"

SAW V.2: "'Come on you cunt let's have some of that Aphex Acid!!!!'"

Nick Southall (Nick Southall), Monday, 12 May 2003 11:08 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Most of his stuff is doodly nonsense..... some unlistenable, some rather good. Much of it sounds like he's making it up as he goes along.

I like doodly nonsense, I like unlistenable, I like "making it up as he goes along" - someone direct me to the doodly unlistenable shit he makes up as he's going along.

Dadaismus (Dada), Monday, 12 May 2003 11:09 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

classic. for the ambient records especially. the more drum'n'bass-y ones don't do it for me quite as much, but then i'm not really into drum'n'bass. i feel like i'm on rocky territory if i start calling him a genius, as i'd feel i have to give reasons other than the beauty of the music. and that's all that matters, really.

weasel diesel (K1l14n), Monday, 12 May 2003 11:09 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

yeah that's spot on nick.

Julio Desouza (jdesouza), Monday, 12 May 2003 11:09 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

I like those jungle inspired recs. its not all good but some amazing tracks came out of that. also search windowlicker and come to daddy singles.

I think SAW II + I think there's enuff to make a wonderful two CD 'best of'.

Julio Desouza (jdesouza), Monday, 12 May 2003 11:13 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

one year passes...
classic,and not just because i own 7 of his albums.I really do believe he is a classic if only for SAWII and "I care..."those two cd's are possibly my faveorite albums ever and underneath fall my boc albums and then the rest of my aphex twin collection.I am interested in autecher and squarepusher but I haven't gotten into them because I'm afraid i'll like them and that'll be another artist to follow and spend my money on....oh and I do like underground stuff too,donato wharton's "is that why yr still on earth" is breathtaking and makes me cry everytime i hear it...

Caleb, Tuesday, 10 August 2004 02:00 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

"I haven't gotten into them because I'm afraid i'll like them and that'll be another artist to follow and spend my money on"

!

roxymuzak (roxymuzak), Tuesday, 10 August 2004 02:04 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

I'm a fan.

latebloomer (latebloomer), Tuesday, 10 August 2004 12:55 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

"I haven't gotten into them because I'm afraid i'll like them and that'll be another artist to follow and spend my money on"

This actually makes perfect sense to me. I used to have to deal with this. (Not just because of the $ factor, but also because it takes me a long time to "absorb" new material, and I get ansy when there's stuff piling up that I'm really itching to soak up, but haven't been able to give my full attention to.)

morris pavilion (samjeff), Tuesday, 10 August 2004 15:46 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

What's up with RDJ these days, anyway? All the big Aphex websites seem to be defunct or otherwise non-operational...

morris pavilion (samjeff), Tuesday, 10 August 2004 15:52 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

probably getting fat and making music he will never show to anyone, ever.

latebloomer (latebloomer), Tuesday, 10 August 2004 16:16 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

He should hang out with D'Angelo.

Jordan (Jordan), Tuesday, 10 August 2004 17:22 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

he did a good interview with the wire a few months back. did anybody mention that?

peter smith (plsmith), Tuesday, 10 August 2004 17:28 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

I noticed that interview, but I have nowhere to buy the Wire. (And I figured it would end up eventually on the "watmm.com" website.) What did he have to say?

morris pavilion (samjeff), Tuesday, 10 August 2004 17:48 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

one month passes...
what is this?

:| (....), Tuesday, 14 September 2004 19:20 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Anal lord, eh?

Ned Raggett (Ned), Tuesday, 14 September 2004 19:22 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

maybe he's picked up some new hobbies?

latebloomer (latebloomer), Wednesday, 15 September 2004 12:14 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

according to luke vibert, aphex has been fully analogue for a while and this is the result

Barnaby (Barnaby), Wednesday, 15 September 2004 13:20 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

lol so many twists and turns on opinions dr

macropuente (map), Wednesday, 19 September 2018 22:18 (one month ago) Permalink

ZANY APHEX = NO THANK U

brimstead, Wednesday, 19 September 2018 22:42 (one month ago) Permalink

I like Jlin, and I'm glad Aphex Twin is learning something from her.

Mario Meatwagon (Moodles), Wednesday, 19 September 2018 23:24 (one month ago) Permalink

at least they are not Sophie.

Heavy Messages (jed_), Thursday, 20 September 2018 00:06 (one month ago) Permalink

I liked Cheetah better but this pretty good, especially “1st 44”

latebloomer, Thursday, 20 September 2018 00:20 (one month ago) Permalink

Jed - what’s that mean about Sophie??

Ross, Thursday, 20 September 2018 05:39 (one month ago) Permalink

RDJ supposedly used an Elektron RYTM for parts of these tracks. You can sort of recognize its 'character' in the title track, but it's not so easy to identify. the RYTM is an eight-voice, analog drum synthesizer that also plays samples. There's a Pitchfork interview with James (and his wife?) from around the time Syro came out, and they mention the drum machine a few times (a gift from Elektron?) - it's a mk1 version of the RYTM, where you have to load samples using a computer. The MKII version (with improved functionality, display, size, appearance, etc.) came out just last year, and it's a sampler in the sense that you can just plug something into its input(s) and record (anything, using a 3.5 mm / 1/4" cable) directly. You can combine those samples with the sounds of the drum machine in a variety of ways. If you're at all familiar with Elektron step sequencers you'll know that using them can take a lot of preparation and forethought... volume/filter/envelope/effects parameters, sounds, sound behavior, their frequency of occurrence, logic conditions, etc. - it's all highly programmable / malleable, to a maddening extent. The workflow of the Elektron sequencer is not at all intuitive until you understand how it works. And then there are the pads of the RYTM, which add a whole 'nother level of control. The Texas band xuiqen uses Elektron machines, and their music (on the album moiré is the next best thing to Autechre (similar to Ae). I keep reading that Autechre used Elektron machines on both Untilted and Quaristice.. most likely the Machinedrum and the MonoMachine, both of which are badass / legendary synthesizers already. They're really expensive. Getting carried away with trivia, apologies. Been listening to the Collapse CD on the stereo this evening, and it is indeed FUN :)

http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLWyVwR_MH1V2Rzo3wisFRgNw9lmVeZi1Z (btw)

braunld (Lowell N. Behold'n), Friday, 21 September 2018 05:57 (four weeks ago) Permalink

Poll: Lets Go Deep vs Stone In Focus

saer, Friday, 21 September 2018 17:59 (four weeks ago) Permalink

It kinda sounds like two disparate tracks playing simultaneously..

braunld (Lowell N. Behold'n), Friday, 21 September 2018 19:07 (four weeks ago) Permalink

i don't know if it's because Stone in Focus is so well-burned 'in' after all these years, but it doesn't seem to match up very well, as it doesn't 'reset' on same the bar / count, so as to lock in with the other track better.

braunld (Lowell N. Behold'n), Friday, 21 September 2018 19:21 (four weeks ago) Permalink

two weeks pass...

really like the new EP, I don't see it as him imitating himself (wtf does that mean?) as approaching a sort of classicism of the kind of techno he makes. I'm not a gearhead, I couldn't pretend to fully understand his process but I hear the material being mostly gestated out of the "character" of the gear he uses (and kind of what he's always done). I don't even know what "innovation" would look like for afx because he's always just made the music he wanted to hear himself.

clouds, Sunday, 7 October 2018 15:20 (one week ago) Permalink

but what if the music he wants to make for himself is boring

the late great, Sunday, 7 October 2018 16:42 (one week ago) Permalink

It kinda sounds like two disparate tracks playing simultaneously..

― braunld (Lowell N. Behold'n),

It is! Just two records hanging out on the decks

saer, Sunday, 7 October 2018 16:49 (one week ago) Permalink

but what if the music he wants to make for himself is boring

― the late great, Sunday, October 7, 2018 1:42 PM (sixteen minutes ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

holy shit man do you have an axe to grind. boring to you maybe lol

montoya (Ross), Sunday, 7 October 2018 16:59 (one week ago) Permalink

boring to me for sure

the late great, Sunday, 7 October 2018 17:04 (one week ago) Permalink

this is what we do on i love music, talk about music we don’t like

the late great, Sunday, 7 October 2018 17:05 (one week ago) Permalink

yeah all good man, tbh i would rather listen to other records but i did like this one (and found most of the last haul of afx pretty dire)

montoya (Ross), Sunday, 7 October 2018 17:05 (one week ago) Permalink

saw two different versions of the LP yesterday at the record store, one with the regular cover and one with a silver cover, "first edition" or something. I didn't buy it, did I fuck up? they were the same price iirc

flappy bird, Sunday, 7 October 2018 21:44 (one week ago) Permalink

I have the silver cover. I prefer the regular cover.

Uhura Mazda (lukas), Monday, 8 October 2018 17:10 (one week ago) Permalink

ep's not the greatest, but track 3 slams...

afriendlypioneer, Monday, 8 October 2018 18:02 (one week ago) Permalink

it's not boring to me; i find a lot to like about it. what isn't boring to you, by comparison?

clouds, Tuesday, 9 October 2018 18:29 (one week ago) Permalink

It's good not great. It's far from a classic like, say, Windowlicker was as a single/EP, but the tracks are all quite memorable, save for the last one on the digital release.

It sounds like an evolution from Syro, but it's clear his days of wildly changing up his sounds on each track while still expressing his classic silliness and trollish personality are over and have been since 1998. It's not like he turned in utter trash like other artist comebacks (*cough* Pixies *cough*) but it's been 20 years now since he's released something that gave me the feels of nearly all his classics up to and including Windowlicker. Wish he'd developed his sound more over the years and kept using laptops. His move to go back to all analog gear pulled back the complexity of his sonic palette. And not for the better.

Drukqs is his New Jersey.

octobeard, Tuesday, 9 October 2018 18:53 (one week ago) Permalink

^^good post/summary, IMO

brush ’em like crazy (morrisp), Tuesday, 9 October 2018 18:55 (one week ago) Permalink

20 years now

the Flow Coma remix was released in 2001

i too wish he'd go back to digital, release some sonically new and wild stuff etc. he's going the other way, endgame for him is making insanely detailed weird little Cornish jewelboxes with no right angles and absolute freedom of line

Uhura Mazda (lukas), Tuesday, 9 October 2018 18:59 (one week ago) Permalink

the most frustrating thing for me about recent afx is that he can do a track like XMAS on Syro, with those gorgeous pads that briefly enter and then fuck around for the rest of it..his music is challenging at times for me as a listener, not that it is inaccessible but that it feels like a constant give and take now. Mind you the new EP is great

searching for Kelilah (Ross), Wednesday, 10 October 2018 15:56 (one week ago) Permalink

It seems like people who cherish 90s Aphex Twin will almost certainly be disappointed by anything he's released after Windowlicker? Hard to say. I had heard bits and pieces of SAW vol. 2, then came aboard with Drukqs (because of the disklavier tracks) ... it took me a while to warm to the more aggressive "drill n bass" stuff, but by the time The Tuss eps came around (2006?) I was fully on board, anticipating new releases, etc. Drukqs is certainly a high water mark, imo. The new ep is excellent.

braunld (Lowell N. Behold'n), Wednesday, 10 October 2018 23:49 (one week ago) Permalink

The Metz track (XMAS_EVET10) started circulating around 2010, a crappy audience recording, with room sounds (audience chatter, reverb etc.) - it sounds 'heavier' somehow. Those elements that corrupt the signal/recording sort of enhance the quality of the track. It's the same effect with Minipops--the original "Manchester track" started circulating on YouTube during the lat 00s, and it seemed to have more depth / dimensions to it. The album versions, while they're great, sound sterile in comparison. Syro is an inconsistent, "grab bag" of tracks. It's still mostly good to great, though

braunld (Lowell N. Behold'n), Wednesday, 10 October 2018 23:57 (one week ago) Permalink

It is! Just two records hanging out on the decks

― saer
all i meant was that it didn't sound so successful as other blends / mixes / mash-ups that i've heard. like, it doesn't exceed the sum of its parts...but whatever floats your boat!

one of my fav mixes, this has some nice blends going on during the last quarter. it's a great mix all around

braunld (Lowell N. Behold'n), Thursday, 11 October 2018 02:20 (one week ago) Permalink

y'all are listening on speakers and not headphones right?

crüt, Thursday, 11 October 2018 03:11 (one week ago) Permalink

It seems like people who cherish 90s Aphex Twin will almost certainly be disappointed by anything he's released after Windowlicker? Hard to say. I had heard bits and pieces of SAW vol. 2, then came aboard with Drukqs (because of the disklavier tracks) ... it took me a while to warm to the more aggressive "drill n bass" stuff, but by the time The Tuss eps came around (2006?) I was fully on board, anticipating new releases, etc. Drukqs is certainly a high water mark, imo. The new ep is excellent.

― braunld (Lowell N. Behold'n)

Yeah but here's the thing - Hangable Autobulb, RDJ album, Girl/Boy EP, Come to Daddy and to a lesser extent, Windowlicker, are all drill'n'bass in their editing, production style, tempo and energy. Yet there's also other beat styles mixed in. The timbre of the instruments, especially the drums, varies widely. Experiments galore abound (Bouncing Bucephalis Ball, Hangable Auto Bulb, Peek 824545201). Melodies are either synths or classical instrumentation (something I realized I miss a lot from RDJ, pizzicatos and orchestral swells!). Remember when RDJ actually had vocals on a couple tracks? Go back and listen to the RDJ album.. it's mindblowing the variety of everything on those records. BPM,

But then Drukqs comes along and every song sounds like variations on two sonic palettes: Satie-like prepared piano vignettes and squelchy 303 acid lines layered on top of the same acoustic breakbeats. At the time, when it came out, I felt it was phoned in and disappointing. It was the first time an AFX album gave me that feeling since I had begun following him. While the editing and complexity of the compositions is staggering (as is the quantity) it felt like he had stopped "experimenting" and had fallen into a sonic groove. This is a groove he hasn't truly jumped out of. Only Computer Controlled Acoustic Instruments Pt. 2 and the aforementioned Flow Coma above have done anything to make me feel the old Aphex is still there. A few tracks on Syro are amazing, and the new EP is solid, but none of this is brilliant, never before heard insanity that his late 90's run of records produced.

Don't get me wrong, though - I'm super happy he's releasing music and I hold out hope he's got some next level shit still coming. SAW III could be aces. Maybe he'll return to laptop production, more sample focused compositions, and light the world up with a track that samples giraffe mating calls over drill'n'bass beats constructed from meticulously recorded sounds of bubbles popping - who knows. Maybe he'll record a track with vocals again?

octobeard, Thursday, 11 October 2018 07:46 (one week ago) Permalink

Where's the "I would like some milk from the milkman's wife's tits" Aphex? Where's the Flim Aphex? Where's the "dirty little boy" Aphex? That's the Richard I miss.

octobeard, Thursday, 11 October 2018 07:51 (one week ago) Permalink

little lord faulteroy mix is my favorite RDJ track and it's not even close

flappy bird, Thursday, 11 October 2018 16:44 (one week ago) Permalink

tuss is great tho, it still has awesome melodies, classic afx imo

Ross, Thursday, 11 October 2018 21:38 (one week ago) Permalink

I felt exactly the same as you about drukqs but I listened to it with a fresh set of ears a couple years back and suddenly thought it was amazing.

frogbs, Thursday, 11 October 2018 21:52 (one week ago) Permalink

If you don't think Fredugolon 6 (from Confederation Trough) has a sense of humor / overt playfulness then I don't know what else to say. The dude is like 45, and it sounds like he's having a ball.

braunld (Lowell N. Behold'n), Thursday, 11 October 2018 21:52 (one week ago) Permalink

That Tuss track may be "playful," but it's sure dull

brush ’em like crazy (morrisp), Thursday, 11 October 2018 21:59 (one week ago) Permalink

whatever, man. one person's dull is another's "banger". Fredugolon 6 is all-time

braunld (Lowell N. Behold'n), Thursday, 11 October 2018 22:24 (one week ago) Permalink

I thought I would have become tired of "Collapse" (track 1), but it's sounds great every time. Can't complain about the last string of eps (Cheetah, ODJS, Collapse) -- both Cheetah and Collapse are *really* consistent.

braunld (Lowell N. Behold'n), Thursday, 11 October 2018 22:27 (one week ago) Permalink

FWIW, I just revisited "Drukqs" and did enjoy the "drill'n'bass"-style tracks more than I remember enjoying them back in the day.

brush ’em like crazy (morrisp), Thursday, 11 October 2018 23:44 (one week ago) Permalink

I don't like the super crazy stuff, I live for the 90s ambient tech / downtempo stuff. extremely wonderful and eternal.

brimstead, Thursday, 11 October 2018 23:54 (one week ago) Permalink

cheetah ep was the closest thing he's done to that in recent years imo

clouds, Friday, 12 October 2018 18:20 (one week ago) Permalink

cheetah ep was the closest thing he's done to that in recent years imo

Agreed. Cheetah e.p. is the best of this 'current era' (it's never clear how old the stuff he's been releasing actually is ... )

Steve Reich In The Afternoon (Against The 80s), Friday, 12 October 2018 18:50 (one week ago) Permalink

CLUD

El Tomboto, Friday, 12 October 2018 18:59 (one week ago) Permalink

agree with octobeard upthread but then I've been saying exactly this for quite some time now

Scritti Vanilli - The Word Girl You Know It's True (dog latin), Friday, 12 October 2018 19:04 (one week ago) Permalink

"squelchy 303 acid lines layered on top of the same acoustic breakbeats"

― octobeard


This is a terrific generalisation / reduction of the sheer variety of timbres served up (i.e. the dense excess and plasticity of Ziggomatic 17), the use of negative space on "Vordhosbn", the gradual ascension and subsequent dismantling of "Omgyjya Switch 7" -- as well as other highlights, like "54 Cymru Beats", "Meltphace 6" and "Taking Control" ... saying that he used the "same acoustic breakbeats" is a lame dismissal. The percussive timbres (on Drukqs) sound like they're from a variety of sources; many synthesized / electronic-sounding, some acoustic, or electronic sounds amplified and recorded.. and yeah, there are sampled breaks. It doesn't sound like anyone else.

I kept reading the same arguments levied against Drukqs - that the much of the material was received as, or sounded like "leftovers" from previous RDJ experiments... and it just comes off as a lazy interpretation of the material. Maybe people were disappointed, but those tracks sound like further refinements, or a natural progression from ideas presented on the RDJ album, et al.

braunld (Lowell N. Behold'n), Friday, 12 October 2018 22:26 (one week ago) Permalink

much of the material was received as, or sounded like "leftovers" from previous RDJ experiments

I mean, it was sort of presented that way, wasn't it?

brush ’em like crazy (morrisp), Friday, 12 October 2018 22:43 (one week ago) Permalink

Uh no?

brimstead, Saturday, 13 October 2018 04:40 (one week ago) Permalink

Ok true, not “leftovers,” but — “Here’s a bunch of random stuff I was working on, and I’m releasing it in a glut because a left an MP3 player on a plane and I want to beat the pirates.” Expectations were set low, which was appropriate (IMO) b/c the beat-driven tracks aren’t nearly as good as what we had come to expect from him.

I revisited Come to Daddy and Windowlicker today (after revisiting Druqks y’day), and the difference is night & day.

brush ’em like crazy (morrisp), Saturday, 13 October 2018 05:49 (one week ago) Permalink

i dislike the sugar-sweet eno/roedelius go breakdancing stuff, the lullaby melodies & the pizzicato strings (90s bedroom composers paying homage to glass/reich always came off embarrassingly murray gold / george fenton to me)
so drukqs onwards burbling fusionisms & syro's tangential forward progressions i find far preferable to the ABABcAB structures that seemingly melted the minds of jeff mills acolytes back whenever

massaman gai, Saturday, 13 October 2018 06:15 (one week ago) Permalink

vordhosbn is an incredible track on drukQs and mt st michaels is one of his best most intricate/melodic tracks ever IMO

i always loved that rumour that madonna was braying like a pig on that one track that sounds like being in a gymnasium from hell

Ross, Monday, 15 October 2018 18:31 (five days ago) Permalink


You must be logged in to post. Please either login here, or if you are not registered, you may register here.