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AAA - Ask Autechre Anything - Sean and Rob on WATMM!

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Do you start tracks by loading midi files of tracks you like and start to manipulate until they sound like you like them?

Do you take melodies of tracks you like and change them?




so what exactly do you mean in this interview when you say "modifying what existed"? Sampling?


"At this stage we weren't really thinking about making music that was our own. What we did was modifying what existed. We didn't really think about ownership of the music either. It was a few years later, when someone said, 'Oh, these tracks are good, are they yours?', that we recognised that we'd almost stopped making sounds that were recognisable. It seemed as if we had been in a grey area for ages, and then suddenly we were aware of actually creating music and playing it to other people, and they were saying it was ours. I think these congratulations satisfied our egos so much, we decided the music was ours!"

Edited by o00o
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yeah music = speech - text   at least roughly - i reckon it's a kind of super-developed version of the pitch and intonation parts of speech (the aural bit that doesn't contain textual info)

can't rem if there were any recordings i think not actually   guess you had to be there   cichlisuite was done in 97 (i think it was 97 anyway), after the tour we did with edgar   yeah we have

no it was the residual ram contents of an ensoniq eps, revealed by making the loop length too small on an unrelated sample (an ensoniq glitch we exploited a few times) those samples hadn't been loade

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Can you guys elaborate on how you feel out the structure of a track? Like how do you decide on the intro, and what elements to bury away, which ones to tease at throughout the track.


Also what's the one track you think took the most amount of effort to finish? Any tracks that stand out in your mind as being particularly frustrating to pull off?


Sent from my Nexus 4 using Tapatalk



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is there any audio available from the last gig at DOUR festival belgium, it was amazing and i was stoned like helll while people in front of me were puking out their drugs, it was with VxSx and otto von schirach i would like to hear that again


Farkin' lol!


Kinda like Glade 2006 for me, first time I ever saw Autechre live. Rob Hall nailed it DJing beforehand (as standard), but when Ae came on it all went pear shaped and I completely span out. Think the daytime heat had got to me, proper roasting that year. Wish I could hear that set again, it made no sense at the time and really shit me up.


So a question, do you plan a set differently for a festival gig? Sometimes festivals are part of a larger tour where I guess you just carry the same sound on, but (iirc) the Glade gigs were kinda separate?



yeah usually with festivals they're more sporadic, we usually have the same setup as the prev tour but with fresh ears

sometimes we change things a bit first but usually it's like a subtle remix of the tour set

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Guest jasondonervan

In regards to Japan-only Autechre bonus tracks:


- Do you mind them being included at the tail-end of an album, especially if you have put a lot of consideration into the running order/length of the album 'proper'?


- Is there any specific criteria for the bonus tracks, or is it more a case of "this was knocking around in the 'current' folder at the time we were working on this album, let's use that"?


- Some of these tracks are very well regarded outside of Japan, certainly '18 (keyosc)' is a fantastic piece in it's own right. Will we ever see them released domestically somehow, or are they forever lost to international licensing only?

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"so what exactly do you mean in this interview when you say "modifying what existed"? Sampling? "


prolly mean like they were modifying ideas from other trax from other people that already existed in the patterns they were making


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1. can you name a specific track where you thought 'we've reached another level!' and maybe hi-fived each other in the studio while popping and locking?


2. do you guys push yourselves to explore 'unconventional' melodies? say someone creates a simple catchy pop hook- do you mess with it so its more subtle and perhaps less immediate? imo, I would say that the early albums were more explicitly melodic.


3. do you ever go back to old stuff and think 'aahh i wish i used a different snare sound'? I would imagine its inevitable with such detail-oriented music.

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Hello guys, I have been making music till 7 AM here today. I often find out that stuff that I really enjoy making at night often suck a lot when listening in to them in daytime. Obviously it has something to do with how brain works. Do you know this situations too? How do you "combat" it? Are you limiting yourself in this situations when to do music and when not?


Another question,


I know that you used to, lets say, "not use deliberately" musical theory approach with your music when composing. But have you ever been in a composition of a track that you could not figure out at all (because of so many notes in complicated compositions on different tracks and so on) that you had to use some of the classical, methodological approach to complete your track? For example looking up the scales for notes in question? Or is it mostly trial and error? OR you have developed some software that can check it for you?


Again, excuse my English.


1. yeah night tracks are just different to day tracks

i find the deeper stuff works better at night

no idea why, i just make both kinds of tracks and that's that really



2. it depends on how we're working. if it's some rule based thing then it can take care of itself usually, but we might still tweak events here and there if we think it needs it. otherwise we just go by feel. it's not like there are many options to try out with there only usually being 12 notes.



Interesting, L-Event is very night-time stuff for me. It seems to not have enough impact during daytime, especially Osla for n. I mean I can hear the, lets say, compisitional logic in those tracks during daytime but at night real emotions come into it and everything seems more enjoyable.


One of my theories is that brain tends to make up more things into the tracks yet in reality those things are not there. I mean sleep has to have effect on the brain comparable with passing out because that is how brain defends itself and the body so that you don't feel pain anymore etc. So maybe the brain is making up things to "sound better" then they really are? But I am not saying that L-Event suck during daytime :-D not at all.



:) daytime is just noisier imo

osla for n was made at night

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I am going to keep on the Gescom theme. What makes a Gescom track? Is it something you fuck around with and end up liking but does not go with current Autechre and it gets filed under Gescom. How does this Gescom thing even work? A group of individuals make their things and share and let others mess around with it and then something eventually gets released?


This is top banana, btw. Thanks.


as far as our stuff goes, gescom = the involvement of a third party (altho that can get tenuous sometimes)

but the other gescom people sometimes use the name without us as well

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How do you organize yourself to be able to come back to an unfinished track when it relies on a complex setup, a mix of softwares, hardware and specific routing. Do you write notes ?

Did you ever considering using Ableton - Live and Max for Live for you gigs.

Also I would like to tell you thanks for such amazing music! Sometimes I 'am so in your music than I lost interest for any other music artists.

I really hope there will be a exai tour! See you in Paris!

Edited by Cornphlex
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Man, I log off from WATMM for a few days and this happens.


I should do it again see if richard does something.


Q: Do you guys like Jungle?


Q2: Do you like owls?




Is it possible to see a musical collaboration involving you & Oneohtrix Point Never in the future?


Thank you for this! love the music! :music:



Q1: yeah bits

Q2: yeah

Q3: dunno

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is there any audio available from the last gig at DOUR festival belgium, it was amazing and i was stoned like helll while people in front of me were puking out their drugs, it was with VxSx and otto von schirach i would like to hear that again

no idea, we never heard anything


The recording was posted here a way while back. I can send it to you guys (autechre) if you want.

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which artists / abstract paint do u enjoy?


quick, name 3 films u've enjoyed in the theater within the past 10 years


for driving, which musics pop to mind as being ideal when operating the motor vehicles?


what do u think of this trac?





what about this trac?



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I believe in this Q&A you said you didn't keep any quaristice tour soundboards. But I believe during that tour you also had some guy expressly shooing away any fans that tried to plug in to get a soundboard (or so I heard). We speculated that maybe you didn't want people ripping the soundboard because you planned to have some sort of live release later, or planned to keep the bits for later use on an album. It sounds like that wasn't the case, after all. Do you think you'd make a different decision now, re: keeping soundboards or letting fans record them, or do you like keeping the live stuff strictly live?


on that tour we wanted to keep it as live as we could. just depends, on the oversteps tour we tried to record as much as we could, we have soundboards for over half of them. no plans for any of it we just wanted to try recording everything


in the past whenever one got recorded it was the venue doing it, so now and then we would be handed a DAT at the end of the night, as a result we don't have anything like a comprehensive archive


and usually the mix sounds wrong cos it was mixed for the venue

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Appreciate you taking the time to do this guys.


Rob & Sean: You listen to much Actress stuff? Guy is pushing boundaries, feel that he has a similar aesthetic to AE in that his music operates somewhere in the outskirts of the (avant garde)techno-continuum. A lot of stuff he's done sounds really electro too. Same thing in regards to his live sets and yours, in that they're usually pretty dancefloor.


Please name my casio CZ-1000 (i found it in a skip if that helps)


yeah we like actress (controversial)


your cz-1000 is now called samantha

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Thanks again for doing this, guys! Hope you feel comfortable enough with it to stick around regularly, or at least consider doing a session like this again one day.


How the hell did y'all get the main synth in Glitch (the one that starts the track) to sound so random, pulling in and out? I can guess as to how I'd replicate that sound now with current software, but I can't imagine how the hell you two figured it out back in 94 or whatever.


Do you remember where the sample/s at about 24 minutes into the infamous Radio Mix (...the police are gonna raid you!) come from? I'm guessing some old radio show or another....


Were there any outtakes from the Peel Sessions you guys did?


I've got a live rip of a New York show from 2000 supposedly at a venue called 10 degrees. What drum machine/routing of drum sounds are you using in the first bit of that set? The sounds it morphs into are fucking amazing and I've always loved them. I cannot wrap my head around what the hell y'all were doing there.


Did most tracks on Untilted start out as different bits of tracks that you then patched together?


glitch = 202 and quadraverb


that sample is off some korean film, i can't rem


er not outtakes as such but maybe some versions, can't rem


i don't rem playing in nyc in 2000


some of them did but most were written serially

Why didnt you come to the Elevate Festival in 2005 ? (if you dont remember just ignore)


I recognize you have been often to Austria , you have some relations with Austria ?


just curios !


there was a good audience in vienna who really got this kind of stuff, in the 90s there was a long line of excellent stuff coming from there imo

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- Sean or Rob, my UC-33 midi controller is still alive after 10 years of intense use (seriously, i was pretty sure it would be my first piece of gear to die, but it won't). Could you give it a name ? :)

I'd recommend u call it Rocky Six Lite from now on.

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are you sending CV/ Gate out of your computers to external synths with these new computer cv boxes like expert sleepers? or is it Midi or native computer synthesis on the computer in your last couple releases?


we have a motu interface that can send cv but most of my stuff's internal

we don't use midi we made a better protocol. midi is stone age really

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You didn't come to the U.S. for your Oversteps tour. Was there a reason, and will you likely be coming back to D.C? Please do...

We wanted to do northern europe territories instead, we hadnt been there properly before and we had limited overall time between previous commitments.

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Hi Sean and Rob. Love you music, thanks for doing this, etc.


1. Oversteps really jumped out at me as having to do with counterpoint, the interplay between multiple voices talking to each other. I noticed this particularly in O=0 and redfall.


Is this something that you intended? Is this something you noticed?



2. Is Pro Radii based around samples of a sporting event? If so, what kind of sport. Basketball?

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are you sending CV/ Gate out of your computers to external synths with these new computer cv boxes like expert sleepers? or is it Midi or native computer synthesis on the computer in your last couple releases?


we have a motu interface that can send cv but most of my stuff's internal

we don't use midi we made a better protocol. midi is stone age really


Will it be published for free or commercialy in the future or is it already available somewhere? How does old hardware recognize this better protocol? Does it behave significantly better when syncing software (DAW, or MAX) with external hardware?

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