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Why is Autechre so difficult for people to like?


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1 hour ago, usagi said:

says nothing about either of their actual sounds.

i’m not saying autechre sounds like phish.  in case i’m being misunderstood, autechre is one of my favorite groups, and i was never particularly in to phish. i’m just saying it invites a similar kind of obsessive ethos that i saw during the short lived time i spent with some serious phish-heads in high school. i feel like going over all the differences in autechre’s live sets is very similar to the tape swapping culture that was around phish and the grateful dead tours back in the day.  the other part of that was phish not making any sense to anyone else who wasn’t really invested in their music. 

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27 minutes ago, nikisoko said:

i’m not saying autechre sounds like phish.  in case i’m being misunderstood, autechre is one of my favorite groups, and i was never particularly in to phish. i’m just saying it invites a similar kind of obsessive ethos that i saw during the short lived time i spent with some serious phish-heads in high school. i feel like going over all the differences in autechre’s live sets is very similar to the tape swapping culture that was around phish and the grateful dead tours back in the day.  the other part of that was phish not making any sense to anyone else who wasn’t really invested in their music. 

A good friend once told me AFX fans were like Frank Zappa fans.

 

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9 hours ago, nikisoko said:

i’m not saying autechre sounds like phish.  in case i’m being misunderstood, autechre is one of my favorite groups, and i was never particularly in to phish. i’m just saying it invites a similar kind of obsessive ethos that i saw during the short lived time i spent with some serious phish-heads in high school. i feel like going over all the differences in autechre’s live sets is very similar to the tape swapping culture that was around phish and the grateful dead tours back in the day.  the other part of that was phish not making any sense to anyone else who wasn’t really invested in their music. 

ha, I kinda get what you're saying about the live set / tape swapping thing. but imo the phish crowd are much more devoted to the live experience, and being part of the hippy scene than the the technical obsessiveness I think Ae fans are known for. yeah some of them may geek out over the weird scales or whatever solo wankery Trey improvises on stage. but overall I don't think phish heads are as well versed on the production side of the music as I think the Ae crowd is. judging from most Ae fans on this forum, everyone who is really into them also know a shit ton about making electronic music. but yeah, my experience with the phish crowd is similar to yours - senior year of high school, college years for me. most of them didn't even know how to play an instrument. the drugs, man. they're there for the drugs. 

as far as similar crowd base, if BoC would ever tour, then I have no doubt the parking lots would be packed full of tailgaters on acid, grilled cheese selling, long haired, mushroom people dancing around in circles. 

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19 minutes ago, zero said:

ha, I kinda get what you're saying about the live set / tape swapping thing. but imo the phish crowd are much more devoted to the live experience, and being part of the hippy scene than the the technical obsessiveness I think Ae fans are known for. yeah some of them may geek out over the weird scales or whatever solo wankery Trey improvises on stage. but overall I don't think phish heads are as well versed on the production side of the music as I think the Ae crowd is. judging from most Ae fans on this forum, everyone who is really into them also know a shit ton about making electronic music. but yeah, my experience with the phish crowd is similar to yours - senior year of high school, college years for me. most of them didn't even know how to play an instrument. the drugs, man. they're there for the drugs. 

as far as similar crowd base, if BoC would ever tour, then I have no doubt the parking lots would be packed full of tailgaters on acid, grilled cheese selling, long haired, mushroom people dancing around in circles. 

huh yeah, my experience was quite a bit different because the one's i knew were pretty serious musicians, knew a ton more music theory than i did and went on to study in college etc. they were also pretty straight edge so polar opposite. there were definitely a lot of technical discussions about the music and some philosophical wankery about the lyrics because hey its high school. i was obviously coming at music from a different angle and spending time helping record/produce an album for them. fortunately this was at a time where radiohead was doing kid a etc so we had a place to find mutual understanding. i did argue with them a lot though!

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I have a friend who is pretty open minded about music and over the years I would send him various stuff to check out. Usually he'd be interested but not necessarily absorb it into his own collection. He's a huge Depeche Mode fan, so I think that's mostly his point of reference for electronic sounds. Surely I'd sent him various Autechre tracks over the years. But kind of as a lol one day I sent him Perlence Subrange 6-36. He listened to the whole thing and was converted. He bought Exai after that and was totally blown away by Fleure, and would just listen to it over and over (not sure if he ever even got into the rest of the album lol). My point is that people can get into Ae via all sorts of routes; somehow for this guy it was the challenge of listening to a repetitive hour-long track, like doing it as a dare, and then being changed by the experience. Not sure if I've ever successfully converted anyone else tho (I generally don't try - see screenshot from earlier lol)

Edited by toaoaoad
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38 minutes ago, Berk said:

I have an aunt (67) that i would like to get into AE, any pointers? Thanks

send her this as an intro/primer

 

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As someone who really didn't get into Autechre the first 1000's times I heard tracks, and who is now a massive fan, I think it has to do with the at first seemingly lack of melody in a lot of their music. (Yes, I know it's all there) but that's what I got caught up on for so long. It seemed like there was a severe lack of melody, or good melody anyway. It's there it's just presented in a really strange and obtuse way a lot of the time, especially with their mid to late period stuff, so a lot of their music doesn't lend itself to playing a track for someone who's never listened and making a profound first impression IMO, unless the impression is meant to be brain melting like Gantz Graf or something.

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11 hours ago, Berk said:

I have an aunt (67) that i would like to get into AE, any pointers? Thanks

One of their most “melodic” tracks (speaking as someone who hasn’t really listened to much of what they’ve put out in the past 20 years). 

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My gf really loves "Skin Up, You're Already Dead"

She walks around in home and like "S-S-S-S-SKI, S-S-S-S-SKI"
She loves all their beat hip hop stuff like in ep7 but Im afraid she don't understand their new stuff. 
This is one of the most easy listen track they ever created for sure. This is radio material really! 
 

 

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A: So, hi. What's your favourite autechre track? 

B: it's got to be 90101-51-4 from the 2008 digital only Japanese exclusive Quaristice EP.  Or maybe acdwn4 from 2016's elseq 4, which was also digital only lol but more widely available through their own webstore and others. 

A: Wow that's a mouthful.  Why do they make the track titles so inaccessible?

B: So that niche online communities can discuss the meanings and intricacies in depth, but mates down the pub will gloss over the details and either say "yea" or "na"

A: ok, thanks. 

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but ofc, you tell them that the obscure title schtick is a jedi mind trick to help you focus on the music by minimising foregone linkages based on traditionally decipherable song titles ^^

 

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56 minutes ago, ooqpoo said:

but ofc, you tell them that the obscure title schtick is a jedi mind trick to help you focus on the music by minimising foregone linkages based on traditionally decipherable song titles ^^

Also they had at least two different approaches: pre-Quaristice with constructed titles that can sometimes be interpreted like a puzzle (ends with Sublimit), and post-Untilted with seemingly internal working titles (begins with Altibzz).

https://web.archive.org/web/20201101001558/http://autechre.wikifoundry.com/

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1 hour ago, Amen Lare said:

Also they had at least two different approaches: pre-Quaristice with constructed titles that can sometimes be interpreted like a puzzle (ends with Sublimit), and post-Untilted with seemingly internal working titles (begins with Altibzz).

https://web.archive.org/web/20201101001558/http://autechre.wikifoundry.com/

Radii sneakers actually look pretty awesome https://www.sneakerhead.com/collections/radii-archive

 

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On 11/4/2021 at 5:31 PM, nikisoko said:

autechre is the phish of idm. change my mind.

 

countless live sets, both official and unofficial.  endless nerddom and pondering over everything they do. becoming obsessed with autechre  can make other music seem quaint by comparison.  people who arent interested, really really really arent interested.

I grew up in a small town in upstate NY and was def a Phish head in my teens. I never really thought it about the comparison but this is a great point. Both complex, rewarding music (for me at least, prob not a ton of Autechre/Phish crossover here), awesome live shows, and most people can't stand either.

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With effort, music that is somehow beyond your comprehension threshold can change your brain so that you can understand that music and more music.

A lot of people are actively against moving their threshold: That earlier quote in this topic about 'When I get home, I want to be anaesthetised by my stereo'.

Then there are people who have no conscious interest in moving it, but hear something that somehow manages to move it. They butt against the challenge, whether by accidental or intentional repetition, and go through to their brain changing a bit.

Then there all the degrees of that kind of thing up to people who are listening to music consciously aware that they can, or sometimes want to,  move their threshold or find new things.

I can remember most of the times in life my threshold moved a bunch. I had a few with Nirvana. When I was a teen, I first heard Lithium on a bus and my brain cried 'Wtf is that?' When I bought their first album, Bleach. I found it almost unlistenable at first compared to Nevermind, and thought 'Is this the same band?' Now it's one of my favourite albums. Bought Nirvana's split single with the Jesus Lizard, heard the Jesus Lizard for the first time, considered THEM unlistenable, and then THEY became one of my favourites, etc. etc.

So for me, it was mostly through rock music in my teens. I was late 20s when I first heard Autechre, and that was coming off Aphex Twin. I loved the amount of stimulation I got from trying to follow Draft 7:30. It didn't feel intellectual, though it is too, as a musician who plays by ear, chasing the patterns in your head, but the record is obviously visceral and emotional, too.

My last big major genre acquirement was black metal after hearing Emperor for the first time.

Edited by djimbe
tiny mistake!
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Probably doesn't help that the lyrics have become so UK centric

Quote

Yo we iz da boys Autekka
And we bought yer nan a sweater
She asked if it were washable
We just laughed cos we's irresponsible

Rewwinnddd.... bra' bra' .... Autekka

XTC .... place to be ... Autekka

 

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