Floating Points

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I think it's time for Mr. Samuel T. Shepherd to have his own thread. Nothing he has released has been a dud (the Floating Points Ensemble was the closest thing) and most of his releases have been phenomenal. Plus he's an incredible dj. Let us celebrate!

matt2, Monday, 13 February 2012 18:12 (seven years ago) link

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n8uHoBA-E7I

matt2, Monday, 13 February 2012 18:13 (seven years ago) link

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d38xbAFnCSQ

matt2, Monday, 13 February 2012 18:13 (seven years ago) link

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ANXeY7Ob5W0

matt2, Monday, 13 February 2012 18:14 (seven years ago) link

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gsbgbVKDOHk

matt2, Monday, 13 February 2012 18:14 (seven years ago) link

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GIo2vs0kmU4

matt2, Monday, 13 February 2012 18:15 (seven years ago) link

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KNN7vFrkIjw

matt2, Monday, 13 February 2012 18:16 (seven years ago) link

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X-xNxzmNtjs

matt2, Monday, 13 February 2012 18:16 (seven years ago) link

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qL73y7jG21c

matt2, Monday, 13 February 2012 18:18 (seven years ago) link

So that's half the discography covered then..."Red Light" off the Fatima EP is also essential imo:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_I5RkApQW1s

two lights crew (seandalai), Monday, 13 February 2012 18:53 (seven years ago) link

something about this guys stuff always feels a little corny to me. i like the jazzy keyboard stuff, but for me the beat needs to have some kind of edge (sonically or rhythmically) to keep things from getting hotel lobby-ish, and i don't usually hear that here.

the third kind of dubstep (Jordan), Monday, 13 February 2012 19:01 (seven years ago) link

did not like what i heard of the ensemble music either (just on that ninja tune xx comp), it made me want to listen to early 00's Cinematic Orchestra.

the third kind of dubstep (Jordan), Monday, 13 February 2012 19:02 (seven years ago) link

these are nice to listen to at work though.

the third kind of dubstep (Jordan), Monday, 13 February 2012 19:03 (seven years ago) link

Only heard the Shawdows and Fatima EPs, but he seems very accomplished and kinda boring. Jordan otm.

lag∞n affiliated (The Reverend), Monday, 13 February 2012 21:59 (seven years ago) link

three years pass...

New album is gorgeous.

Tim F, Thursday, 29 October 2015 21:42 (four years ago) link

Love "Silhouettes (I, II & III)", which was made available in advance: https://soundcloud.com/floatingpoints/silhouettes-i-ii-iii

Guardian interview just published, appetite further whetted: http://d.gu.com/CbJLD5

mike t-diva, Thursday, 29 October 2015 23:23 (four years ago) link

Yeah, this album is certainly going to end up in my top 5, if not 3. Streaming here: http://www.npr.org/2015/10/28/450599927/first-listen-floating-points-elaenia

self-clowning oven (Murgatroid), Thursday, 29 October 2015 23:49 (four years ago) link

Only heard one track (the closer) and it was fucking amazing.

Hey Bob (Scik Mouthy), Friday, 30 October 2015 10:33 (four years ago) link

Of the tracks I've heard over the years, I only really love Vacuum Boogie, but people have been saying incredibly good things about this record.

Matt DC, Friday, 30 October 2015 11:19 (four years ago) link

it hasn't actually grabbed me as some of his epic singles over the past couple of years but obv only one listen in

lex pretend, Friday, 30 October 2015 11:20 (four years ago) link

Somehow I've managed to not hear of him until yesterday. Which seems bizarre.

Hey Bob (Scik Mouthy), Friday, 30 October 2015 11:42 (four years ago) link

Presumably that means you haven't heard the Four Tet fabriclive? Which isn't my thing at all but he pops up quite early on that.

Matt DC, Friday, 30 October 2015 11:47 (four years ago) link

i would recommend vacuum boogie/people's potential/wires/nuits sonorés/nectarines/king bromeliad/montparnasse, all of those are amazing

lex pretend, Friday, 30 October 2015 11:47 (four years ago) link

I shall acquire all I can download this evening.

Hey Bob (Scik Mouthy), Friday, 30 October 2015 12:05 (four years ago) link

Enjoying this quite a bit.

EveningStar (Sund4r), Friday, 30 October 2015 12:06 (four years ago) link

Is the last track supposed to just stop like that?

Matt DC, Sunday, 1 November 2015 16:21 (four years ago) link

I was listening to this earlier this week and i thought it was interesting but a bit weird, definitely different though.

then i realised i had left soundcloud playing so i was listening to a dj mix simultaneously

doing my Objectives, handling some intense stuff (LocalGarda), Sunday, 1 November 2015 16:25 (four years ago) link

Quite a lot of it is so ambient that you could do that without realising for a long time.

This definitely worked for me as a Sunday afternoon kinda record - Silhouettes is definitely the best thing here (that orchestral swell!) but in general a move away from the dancefloor is quite a wise step for him.

Matt DC, Sunday, 1 November 2015 16:28 (four years ago) link

Haven't heard this album yet, but Floating Points is great, one of the most consistently interesting producers out there. It's weird, because I wouldn't say I am typically drawn to jazzy house, but he does it in a way that really brings out groove in a tasteful way, and somehow is never cheesy or too smooth.

Dominique, Sunday, 1 November 2015 16:29 (four years ago) link

i haven't heard this but then i realised i had left soundcloud playing so i was listening to a dj mix simultaneously happens to me all the time. i get frequent "wow! this producer is really pushing the boundaries of dance music" moments only to realise, no, it's just yet another dull as ditchwater tech house track. i will check out the new floating points album simultaneously playing along the next time i'm wading through dance promos for a potentially more interesting experience.

stirmonster, Sunday, 1 November 2015 18:17 (four years ago) link

Quite a lot of it is so ambient that you could do that without realising for a long time.

this is my issue with it really. floating points' last few singles haven't been dancefloor-oriented either but there was just so much going on in them, 11-minute tracks that really made full use of the running time. this is def a lot more subdued, maybe more subtle but also less engaging

lex pretend, Sunday, 1 November 2015 18:36 (four years ago) link

This is lush.

Hey Bob (Scik Mouthy), Friday, 6 November 2015 13:57 (four years ago) link

omg this is so fusiony

last three tracks on this are incredible

or four rather. great album

^^^^^^^

Tim F, Friday, 6 November 2015 22:26 (four years ago) link

have you guys heard the singles he's released over the past year or so?

lex pretend, Friday, 6 November 2015 23:55 (four years ago) link

any time you have a lex/Tim f/scick mouthy/murgatroid/ Ronan/ Matt dc/ Dominique/ stirmonster/ brad nelson consensus you know it's gonna be wonderful

gr8080, Saturday, 7 November 2015 00:14 (four years ago) link

first weekend of November is such a perfect time for this to emerge too

gr8080, Saturday, 7 November 2015 00:15 (four years ago) link

have you guys heard the singles he's released over the past year or so?

yeah! i like "nuits sonores" and "montparnasse," but i've never really loved this guy as much as kinda just respected what he did. i love that for the full length he totally luxuriated into fusion and space, which is really weird bc 1) i usually am not into that lp approach in dance music 2) i especially wasn't expecting to love it here but it's so... gorgeous?

insufficiently familiar with xgau's work to comment intelligently (BradNelson), Saturday, 7 November 2015 00:31 (four years ago) link

Yeah i sort of see the big singles and the album as fulfilling different functions - like while it's fun and awesome when one of his earlier tracks like "sais" temporarily launches off into intergalactic jazz travel, it's differently awesome how the album just sits in that zone.

Tim F, Saturday, 7 November 2015 00:42 (four years ago) link

nuits sonores is very good & brad otm

gr8080, Saturday, 7 November 2015 00:46 (four years ago) link

The collab album with Mahmoud Guinia is excellent

welltris (crüt), Saturday, 7 November 2015 01:58 (four years ago) link

Not heard anything else yet but looking forward to - at the moment the instant-gratification part of my brane is telling me I'd like more tracks like Peroration Six, or for the ambient-y ones in the midsection to have a house beat dropped over them, and hopefully the earlier singles will satiate this desire. (I have a strong hunch that in the fullness of time I'll be glad of the juxtaposition of the ambient-y, Tangerine-Dream stuff with the jazziness.)

Main other thoughts at the moment = he plays with dynamics really nicely; there's a really beautiful swell of sound in the opening track, and this seems triangulated to hit all my sweet-spots at once; Tom Skinner drums on it, he's mates with Four Tet etc, and he keeps talking about Laughing Stock. What's not to like?

Hey Bob (Scik Mouthy), Saturday, 7 November 2015 08:47 (four years ago) link

i haven't heard this but then i realised i had left soundcloud playing so i was listening to a dj mix simultaneously happens to me all the time. i get frequent "wow! this producer is really pushing the boundaries of dance music" moments only to realise, no, it's just yet another dull as ditchwater tech house track. i will check out the new floating points album simultaneously playing along the next time i'm wading through dance promos for a potentially more interesting experience.

hahaha - two wildly different tracks playing at once, it's the undiscovered country!

gonna give this record a proper listen today - i have some cleaning to do. #life

doing my Objectives, handling some intense stuff (LocalGarda), Saturday, 7 November 2015 10:39 (four years ago) link

This album is absolutely incredible on headphones, there's so much detail lurking in there even among the minimal arpeggiated Snooze For Love one.

What this reminds me of more than anything is a Hatchback album, that sense of something beautiful unfolding very slowly and just luxuriating in it throughout. I like it a lot more than his more dancefloor oriented singles because his slightly wonky approach to rhythm works much better in this context.

Matt DC, Saturday, 7 November 2015 11:28 (four years ago) link

Also "mates with Four Tet" is completely meaningless at this point because he is mates with pretty much everyone including Terror Danjah and Skrillex.

Matt DC, Saturday, 7 November 2015 11:31 (four years ago) link

Like I think initially approaching this as Balearic is probably the single best way to listen to it, as far as managing expectations goes.

Matt DC, Saturday, 7 November 2015 11:35 (four years ago) link

Think I must be alone in liking his earlier, housier stuff! I much prefer the Shadows e.p. to this new one (although the last track *is* incredible)

Steve Reich In The Afternoon (Against The 80s), Saturday, 7 November 2015 12:35 (four years ago) link

album really reminds me of this (song and album)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xwmT8b39aQY

doing my Objectives, handling some intense stuff (LocalGarda), Saturday, 7 November 2015 13:15 (four years ago) link

So his new thing is out today - Reflections Mojave Desert. 5 tracks over 27 minutes recorded in the mojave desert as a 5-piece band. Two long (7 and 10 minutes) psychedelic prog jazz grooves, and three ambient-y explorations of what happens if you fiddle with an organ in the desert and approach it as a post-doc field recording project.

Ordered it weeks ago from his site and it arrived yesterday. Silurian Blue the 7-minute track, got a bit of play on 6music a while ago, and is pretty indicative (of course; there are only four other tracks!).

Headphones, though, wow. This sounds like nothing else I've ever heard. Not like a live album, not like a studio record. It's pretty slight in many ways (and he really is just doing instrumental prog now), but I also wouldn't want it to be any longer.

Comes with a DVD of s short film of the band playing and Sam wandering around with a field recording mic in the desert, which I've not watched yet.

Hey Bob (Scik Mouthy), Friday, 30 June 2017 05:45 (two years ago) link

The 10-minute track, Kelso Dunes, reaches somewhere he's not quite been before, whilst also being a logical kin to Kuiper etc.

Hey Bob (Scik Mouthy), Friday, 30 June 2017 05:46 (two years ago) link

Headphones, though, wow. This sounds like nothing else I've ever heard. Not like a live album, not like a studio record. It's pretty slight in many ways (and he really is just doing instrumental prog now), but I also wouldn't want it to be any longer.

I'm having difficulty reconciling the two halves of this paragraph and tbh your description doesn't riveting tbh, he doesn't need to go any further in that direction.

I had this all queued up for my Friday morning commute but that's prime listening real estate so I'll give it a go on Sunday morning instead.

Matt DC, Friday, 30 June 2017 08:11 (two years ago) link

new album is the best thing he has done IMO. less brainy but all the better for it. one of my favourite things ive heard this year. lots of daft punk style synth work (i dont know the exact synth but they used it a lot on RAM), and some gorgeous guitar. not seen the film but its very replayable. also perfect for summer.

StillAdvance, Thursday, 6 July 2017 10:56 (two years ago) link

three months pass...

OK this meddle/dark side shit on "reflections" is AWESOME. what a champion.

brimstead, Tuesday, 10 October 2017 15:09 (two years ago) link

New track out today, download and (weird) 12". Ratio. 19 minutes. Which is why it's weird on vinyl, cos it's split somehow? Anyway, it's long, it's proggy, but it's NOT krauty / jazzy like the Reflections or Kuiper; it's much more house-y again, like a fusion of the early singles with Elaenia. Very nice indeed off a couple of listens. He's very tasteful, isn't he?

Hey Bob (Scik Mouthy), Thursday, 19 October 2017 14:31 (two years ago) link

And why not? Said song:

https://soundcloud.com/floatingpoints/ratio-full-mix

Ned Raggett, Thursday, 19 October 2017 19:22 (two years ago) link

Might be the best thing he’s done.

Hey Bob (Scik Mouthy), Thursday, 19 October 2017 21:03 (two years ago) link

one year passes...

His new Late Night Tales is good fun. Very much in the, well, 'late night' section of late night in that it's practically beatless.

Tracklist: https://latenighttales.co.uk/products/floating-points

Good cop, Babcock (Chinaski), Monday, 1 April 2019 22:03 (seven months ago) link

that looks great. plus Lauren Laverne reading Emily Bronte!

brimstead, Monday, 1 April 2019 22:27 (seven months ago) link

two months pass...

New stuff!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S8fFo4REHOE

Steve Reich In The Afternoon (Against The 80s), Tuesday, 18 June 2019 20:43 (four months ago) link

Quite a lot of it is so ambient that you could do that without realising for a long time.

this is my issue with it really. floating points' last few singles haven't been dancefloor-oriented either but there was just so much going on in them, 11-minute tracks that really made full use of the running time. this is def a lot more subdued, maybe more subtle but also less engaging

― lex pretend, Sunday, November 1, 2015 1:36 PM (three years ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

Wonder if lex is pleased with this new one!

Evan, Tuesday, 18 June 2019 21:10 (four months ago) link

two months pass...

New album 'Crush' arrives mid-October.

Crush:

01 Falaise
02 Last Bloom
03 Anasickmodular
04 Requiem for CS70 and Strings
05 Karakul
06 LesAlpx
07 Bias
08 Environments
09 Birth
10 Sea-Watch
11 Apoptose Pt1
12 Apoptose Pt2

Hey Bob (Scik Mouthy), Friday, 6 September 2019 09:21 (two months ago) link

I loved Ratio and LesAlpx so I am psyched for this. Not a band release, just him making more dancefloor stuff, I understand.

Hey Bob (Scik Mouthy), Friday, 6 September 2019 09:21 (two months ago) link

The new stuff I've heard seems pretty next-level to me.

sock fingering, baby (rushomancy), Sunday, 8 September 2019 17:21 (two months ago) link

I was hoping he would go further into rhodesy space-fusion territory after Elaenia--like something with Mwandishi-esque sidelong jams--but the new tracks are pretty cool. Getting strong Aphex vibes from Last Bloom.

J. Sam, Monday, 9 September 2019 15:17 (two months ago) link

one month passes...

This new album is quite good.

self-clowning oven (Murgatroid), Thursday, 17 October 2019 18:50 (four weeks ago) link

yeah on a couple spins it's one of my favorites of the year so far. The singles are nestled perfectly about the album, surrounded by some really incredible orchestral and synth driven songs that step through many different transitions and progressions over some relatively brief track times!

octobeard, Saturday, 19 October 2019 21:42 (three weeks ago) link

His new Late Night Tales is good fun. Very much in the, well, 'late night' section of late night in that it's practically beatless.

Tracklist: https://latenighttales.co.uk/products/floating-points🕸

Haven't heard the new album yet, but have been playing his LNT a lot, such a beautiful selection

willem, Saturday, 19 October 2019 21:59 (three weeks ago) link

quite like this but a lot of it sounds like a worse, less ambitious drukqs

ogmor, Sunday, 20 October 2019 13:29 (three weeks ago) link

I really love the Late Night Tales but this new album is rubbish. Dance music that's never broken a sweat. You can reaĺly feel how it stretches towards big emotive feelings and comes up so short, corny but without any sense of glee or euphoria

boxedjoy, Monday, 21 October 2019 07:39 (three weeks ago) link

File beside Jamie XX and Bicep as dance music that wishes it was mid-noughties Kompakt but comes nowhere close

boxedjoy, Monday, 21 October 2019 07:41 (three weeks ago) link

I'm not sure he's aiming to make people dance with most of this.

Hey Bob (Scik Mouthy), Tuesday, 22 October 2019 09:51 (three weeks ago) link

The album as a whole isn't as strong as the pre-release tracks and moving towards shorter tracks doesn't seem to have necessarily benefited his sound any, but I also don't think there's anything wrong with being detached and cerebral. Not all electronic music needs to be body music.

Spironolactone T. Agnew (rushomancy), Tuesday, 22 October 2019 10:27 (three weeks ago) link

Yeah, I'm enjoying this - I think the singles sound much better in the context of the rest of the album

Steve Reich In The Afternoon (Against The 80s), Tuesday, 22 October 2019 10:32 (three weeks ago) link

Eleania wasnt really trying to make people dance either but it was good and not gloopy. I think that's why I found this such a disappointment - he's been involved in so many better things than this before

boxedjoy, Tuesday, 22 October 2019 11:45 (three weeks ago) link

See I found Elaenia a little underwhelming overall - after the singles and Peroration Six I felt that the mid-section loss of momentum as he explored pseudo-ambience was just way too close to torpor and emptiness. I much preferred Kuiper and Ratio. So far - and I've only listened properly a couple of times so it's early days - I feel like this has got a bit more dynamism and urgency to it. He's still not delivered exactly what I want him to, though, I don't think. Which would probably just be 45 minutes of Ratio and Peroration Six.

Hey Bob (Scik Mouthy), Tuesday, 22 October 2019 14:45 (three weeks ago) link

I have no point of comparison as I've yet to check out his previous material but this flows quite nicely despite its disparate gestures (there's even a Bach-esque adagio in there). I'm very curious to hear what he'll come up with next.

pomenitul, Wednesday, 23 October 2019 09:05 (three weeks ago) link

'Sea-Watch' vaguely brings to mind Vangelis's L'Apocalypse des animaux.

pomenitul, Wednesday, 23 October 2019 09:20 (three weeks ago) link

Coincidentally, in the context of the album LesAlpx has been making me think of Blade Runner, which I'd never thought before despite listening to the shit out of the extended version.

Hey Bob (Scik Mouthy), Wednesday, 23 October 2019 10:13 (three weeks ago) link

This album smokes Elaenia. That record never resonated with me and I couldn't even remember most of how it sounded. This one sounds iconic from start to finish. The songs fit together really well despite sounding so different. The equipment listing in the liner notes suggest a focused and minimal equipment setup (outside of vocals and acoustic instrument recordings) used consistently across most of the tracks. Love the creative and subtle use of compression all over the record too. Lots of nice attention to detail.

If I have any critique it's in the abruptness of how both Bias and the album itself end.

octobeard, Thursday, 24 October 2019 05:10 (three weeks ago) link

Yes, I also found the closer needlessly jarring, like he'd just thrown his arms up and decided it was time to move on, much to the listener's dismay.

pomenitul, Thursday, 24 October 2019 10:22 (three weeks ago) link

The trope of making intentionally messy decisions for the sake of winning avant-garde points is kind of annoying among all artists? But it's impossible to argue whether it works or not in any given case, really.

Evan, Thursday, 24 October 2019 15:33 (three weeks ago) link

I like this, not sure how much I'll go back to it, but moreso I'm jealous/impressed by the fluidity of his setup (and musicianship)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=75iX1rnW9WQ

change display name (Jordan), Monday, 28 October 2019 17:43 (two weeks ago) link

Actually this is growing on me as an ambient-ish album, LesAlpx is really the outlier

change display name (Jordan), Tuesday, 29 October 2019 18:38 (two weeks ago) link

It's quite lovely!

Ned Raggett, Tuesday, 29 October 2019 18:39 (two weeks ago) link

I put this on recently driving around at night and found that it just kind of merged with my thoughts to the point that I was enjoying it and not really conscious of it being on at the same time.

longtime caller, first time listener (man alive), Tuesday, 29 October 2019 18:42 (two weeks ago) link

I've only skimmed this, but it strikes me that a few of the songs would fit on a playlist with Rival Consoles and other Erased Tapes stuff in a similar vein.

beard papa, Tuesday, 29 October 2019 19:08 (two weeks ago) link

Yes very much.

Hey Bob (Scik Mouthy), Tuesday, 29 October 2019 20:44 (two weeks ago) link

I think the fusion guy it actually reminds me of most is jan hammer

― on entre O.K. on sort K.O. (man alive), Friday, December 11, 2015 11:20 PM (three years ago)

i've never heard this guy before but i def get the same vibe as that one J.H.G. track andy kellman used to great effect on more than one of his doubt beat mixes

j., Tuesday, 5 November 2019 03:31 (one week ago) link

jan hammer is a good point of comparison i think! i was toying with tangerine dream.

Fuck the NRA (ulysses), Tuesday, 5 November 2019 06:01 (one week ago) link

the abruptness

a handful of tracks i'd say - seems to be a thing

j., Tuesday, 5 November 2019 16:06 (one week ago) link

ok this guy is the shit

j., Tuesday, 5 November 2019 21:10 (one week ago) link

This grows on me with each listen. There's an unstructured audio collage feel to it that I like. Works well as a whole album. I was also thinking about it the other day and wondering how Vacuum Boogie didn't show up on the 2000-2010 singles poll. Still probably my favorite Floating Points song.

beard papa, Tuesday, 5 November 2019 23:09 (one week ago) link

i think it's dumb how so many reviews cite his neuroscience degree/job when the obvious fact of note is that he studied music, he's got an amazing tact for mixing modes

j., Wednesday, 6 November 2019 03:05 (one week ago) link

On paper, this music touches on many things I love dearly--RJD, Kompakt, ECM, electric Miles, Krautrock--and yet the cumulative effect invariably has me shrugging, and I can't say why. It always sounds great when it's playing but I almost never want to return to any of it. I plan to keep trying though because it really does feel like something that will click at some point. It may just require the right weather / occasion / drugs and / or mood

Paul Ponzi, Wednesday, 6 November 2019 13:28 (one week ago) link

i'm impressed without being particularly moved by it.

Wee Bloabby (NickB), Wednesday, 6 November 2019 13:44 (one week ago) link

next time through i'm gonna try and imagine i'm listening to an ecm record

j., Wednesday, 6 November 2019 17:57 (one week ago) link

enjoyable but not exciting seems about right but it needs a few more spins

Fuck the NRA (ulysses), Wednesday, 6 November 2019 18:03 (one week ago) link


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