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Brisbot

What's up with the apathy toward Drukqs back in 2001?

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Alright I've been going back and reading reviews of Aphex's stuff for national Aphex Twin Review Reading Day.

What's up with the apathy toward Drukqs back in 2001, and why has it changed now? At the time they were saying he was constantly breaking new ground with every release, and then suddenly he breaks a TON of new ground with Drukqs, but various reviews saying that he's already done everything in the album before, and that it is on par compared to earlier stuff.

It's so strange to read that. There was nothing that nailed the emotional whirlwind and technique before, and imho not much since (but not many people have seemed to try)

Oh but now, many of these same publications are calling Drukqs one of the best albums ever?

What gives?

Oh yes, and where is all this music where Drukqs stole/ took inspiration from? Also, how come this same standard wasn't applied to Syro? Maybe they're just happy to get new music? Also, from artists these days you don't see the same expectation that critics had on Aphex, the 'must break new ground every release' thing.

Edited by Brisbot

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Personally I think it's just because it was released just a tad bit too early. What I mean by that is at the time nobody, NOBODY had written anything that crazy before. It's a pretty alien and difficult listen, probably turned off a lot of listeners the first couple of years. A lot of painters have the same issue too, nobody gives a shit about certain works until enough time has passed for trends to change. Drukqs is Richard's fine wine, but instead of tasting better we just have a better grasp at understanding how awesome the album is.

 

It probably helped that the musicians that were influenced by Drukqs at the time helped future listeners get into crazy stuff like that, too.

 

Or maybe we all just sucked back then, IDK. I was 7 when Drukqs was released, was way too busy playing with Legos to notice.

Edited by Trilobot

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Oh yeah same, I was 5. heh. Legos were the bomb diggity.

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I was in my early twenties and vaguely remember when Druqks came out and it didn't get very good reviews. I think it was more compared to the early 1990s when RDJ's style was changing so rapidly. Then there was a longer pause between the albums after Come To Daddy (or RDJ album if you want) and Druqks and the style didn't change that much. A few years may not feel that long now but then it felt like ages.

 

Personally I didn't attach to it the same way I did with SAW2, ICBYD and RDJ album. Sure I loved a lot of the tracks but I usually just cherry picked them from the album instead of listening to the whole album. I felt it just was too all over the place, chill piano pieces switching to balls to the walls drill'n'bass. I remember other people creating their own track lists based on their preferences. Also I have some memories of reviews complaining about the same thing?

 

It may be just me but I feel lots of people that got into Aphex in the 1990s don't think Druqks reaches to the level of the earlier Aphex releases? I know a few IRL and this seems to be the general thinking.

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I'm a huge afx fan, but never bothered to get Druqks - he lost me with windowlicker (awfully cheezy and boring) and I my interest in his music came back a bit with some of the Analord-tracks and then the Tuss stuff... Still, he has done so many great tracks and it's enough to make a long and really good playlist. I prefer the much more idea-driven and exploratary style of ae, it's impossible to be bored by Exai!

It may be just me but I feel lots of people that got into Aphex in the 1990s don't think Druqks reaches to the level of the earlier Aphex releases? I know a few IRL and this seems to be the general thinking.

This!

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^Hell yes.

 

I think his "lost my mp3 player so I had to quickly release something" tale was an excuse against any backlash he may have received, and his hurt response to Joyrex's infamous "quite good" summary may be a bit of evidence of how he felt about this album. It's absolutely outstanding.

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To be fair though, not many aphex releases have received initial rave reviews. Most of them seemed to have grown from the reviewers perspectives. Saw2 was misunderstood. RDJ was misunderstood.

 

I don't think I have read any rave review immediately upon releasedate of any album. Saw1 might be the exception.

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Probably coz Aphex was praised mostly for his pop sensibility throughout his mainstream career, the kind side to bedroom experimentation so to say, and he went too far cold and dark on this one aesthetically. The success of Syro indirectly confirms it. John Cage meets Satie-y vignettes couldn't change that.

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It's hard to try to remember what was the zeitgeist at the time, but I remember something like that in 2001 it was thought that IDM and more specifically the drill'n'bass style was already a dying genre. The hyperspastic amen breaks were done to death in the 90s and people wanted something new. Minimal and deep techno were becoming popular at the time and it took the electronic music to a completely different direction.

 

Ae and BoC were also taking the IDM as a genre into new fields away from the 90s style.

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Checking the Wikipedia Aphex discography it seems that it still was the top selling Aphex album before Syro, so the reviews may not have reflected the public opinion that much?

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I'm a huge afx fan, but never bothered to get Druqks - he lost me with windowlicker (awfully cheezy and boring) and I my interest in his music came back a bit with some of the Analord-tracks and then the Tuss stuff... Still, he has done so many great tracks and it's enough to make a long and really good playlist. I prefer the much more idea-driven and exploratary style of ae, it's impossible to be bored by Exai!

whoah whoah whoah are we just going to pretend that this didn't happen?

 

BAN HIM

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YES! DIDNT HAPPEN! :sparta:

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Checking the Wikipedia Aphex discography it seems that it still was the top selling Aphex album before Syro, so the reviews may not have reflected the public opinion that much?

It's possible that a bunch of those sales were people who had recently got into Aphex through his pop hits, bought the album expecting more of that and were super disappointed.

Edited by Rotwang

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Checking the Wikipedia Aphex discography it seems that it still was the top selling Aphex album before Syro, so the reviews may not have reflected the public opinion that much?

If those are coming from RIAA numbers at all (consequently, Billboard numbers as well, which use RIAA if I recall), that's actually reflecting their methodology: they count double-disc albums twice (if they total over 100 minutes, if I recall correctly).

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to be fair it has some of the best tracks of the decade, but as an album it is a 2 hour clusterfuck

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YES! DIDNT HAPPEN! :sparta:

 

piano un10 it happened

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Before it was officially released I had the pleasure of obtaining an early copy of the album and was floored.

 

I began telling everyone in here to get ready for John Cage/Eno/RDJ, that he was exploring new ground and I loved it.

 

A lot of haters appeared in here of all places and were down on the record, so I got angry and began pushing it even harder.

 

Never got the hate that was going around from true fans, but I bet they love the record now and that is what I kept telling them, wait 15 years and then you will love it.

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drukqs is literally the greatest musical creation of all time, within its own genre

 

Someone please prove me wrong because honestly I WANT TO BE WRONG. I want there to be more like this even half as good as this but I just don't think the world will ever have it.

 

If Richard only ever created drukqs he would still be among the greatest ever imo. The sheer vastness of all the other amazing stuff in so many genres that he's made though just makes him obviously the single greatest electronic artist of all time. I mean come on who the fuck compares.

 

Sorry lol

Edited by Zeffolia

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drukqs is literally the greatest musical creation of all time, within its own genre

 

Someone please prove me wrong because honestly I WANT TO BE WRONG. I want there to be more like this even half as good as this but I just don't think the world will ever have it.

 

If Richard only ever created drukqs he would still be among the greatest ever imo. The sheer vastness of all the other amazing stuff in so many genres that he's made though just makes him obviously the single greatest electronic artist of all time. I mean come on who the fuck compares.

 

Sorry lol

/thread

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I remember buying the CD in Stirling's Thistle Centre as soon as it came out. At that time I was a teen and had been recording my mate's brother's Warp vinyl onto tape and listening to my copy's over and over getting obsessed. My faves were Ae's LP5, Squarepusher's Burning'n NTree and RDJ album+ Freeman Hardy & Willis and some of the comp albums. I was getting into this sound. I was excited to listen to Drukqs asap, I immediately got into the fast ones, loved them instantly but it felt disjointed with those piano tracks, I used to skip through them. I was in the minority of my mates who hated the album and didn't listen to it again and moved into other genre's of dance.

I don't haven't spoken to them in year's. Drukq's power is it's ability to disorrientate

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Work of genius. No doubt.

 

If he reckons he can make another album as great as this, then that would just make my brain melt into spastic fantastic gloop.

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I think Drukqs being released after an pretty easy listening like rdj album is, was just too much.

To be honest it took me some years to get fully into it. It was that kind of album I had to struggle through, until it hit me so hard, it made me wonder how in the hell I didn't hear it that way ever before...

 

To me it's a masterpiece.

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ya ive wondered if the reception would have been different if 'CCAI Vol1' was separated and released a few months after drukqs. Still would have been wild and dark and weird but those piano tunes seemed to be the basis for ppl claiming it was 'disjointed' or whatever.

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Well I don't really care for some of the filler. The piano make sense with the album for some reason with me.

 

 

If he reckons he can make another album as great as this, then that would just make my brain melt into spastic fantastic gloop.

Yeah, I reckon though that he will never release another super high intense bpm track, hopefully he'll be able to match the emotions. He's said before he didn't know what compelled him to make such intense tracks back then, meaning he probably doesn't do it now.

Think about what's left for this turn of releases. He released his pop album, then the CCAI... I imagine the next Aphex Twin album will be basically Drukqs 2, at least in emotion/feeling. Except hopefully better/more calculated.

I wonder what he has in mind.

Edited by Brisbot

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I first heard DrukQs a few years ago and before that I never really liked electronic music, in fact, it really annoyed me. I was really huge into Nine Inch Nails for like... 8 years or something. After listening to Further Down the Spiral again I thought to look over the artist who made At The Heart of It All as it was easily my favorite track from the album. I checked out Aphex on spotify and at the time DrukQs was his latest album. I just sat down and as soon as I heard the soft dulcimer from Jynweythek Ylow I was instantly mesmerized. Then came Vordhosbn. I just was in awe. How could a human do anything like this? This was the most amazing experience that I've ever had with any album. That night, I listened to ICBYD and the RDJ album right afterwards. When I went to sleep I dreamt of this amazing alien music.

 

I've never heard anything that was as powerful and mind blowing as DrukQs. RDJ is truly the Mozart of this generation. That isn't an exaggeration.

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