Many fans of Aphex Twin's 1994 album Selected Ambient Works vol. 2, have spent years wondering about the origins of its enigmatic track titles.
As many of you know, SAW2 was released without a tracklist, and to this day all official references to its content are numbered "SAW2 CD1 TRACK 1", and so on. Instead of a conventional tracklist, the album artwork includes a series of images, meant to accompany each track.
Fans of the album have interpreted these images in a number of ways. As a result, there now exists a complete tracklist for SAW2, with names deriving from impressions of the 25 images.
Naturally, this has led to some confusion. While the images featured on the album are indeed beautiful, their origin (and indeed, their connection to the fanmade track titles) is not always clear. Some fans have tried to explain this mystery with interpretations of their own:
Of course, there is one simple explanation. You see, the Sire Records release of Selected Ambient Works 2 (the US version) does not actually include the same images as the original UK version. This means there are two full sets of artwork, only one of which has been seen by the majority of fans.
When you see the original artwork, or course, the track titles make perfect sense.
Once the images had been named, people were so used to using them that they simply didn't feel it necessary to change them. As a result, YouTube users and blogging authorities everywhere have been perplexed. But I hope, thanks to this post, things will become clearer.