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Aphex Twin - is it OK to only like the bits that sound nice?


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Back in my teens, it took me a long time to discover some of the gems of albums like ICBYD and RDJ because they were obscured by "bad bits" that I didn't have the patience for... Throughout my 20's I

Your observations are sound, you are free to listen to and enjoy whatever you like, but Rich has always said he's interested in the 2 extreme sides of music, the extremely lush and the extremely harsh

different parts sound nice to different people. for example, I actually like the first and second parts of the track the most, the 3rd part I'm just like, well I know that's nice melodyish but I've he

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I don't like the middle section either. I respect it but don't like listening to it. I also make playlists of autechres melodic shit and get rid of the fluff wankery tracks. I'm happy with who I am.

What do you say? Are we proud, are we brave, or just crazy? Are we shooting at windmills like you?

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I don't like the middle section either. I respect it but don't like listening to it. I also make playlists of autechres melodic shit and get rid of the fluff wankery tracks. I'm happy with who I am.

What do you say? Are we proud, are we brave, or just crazy? Are we shooting at windmills like you?
I won't let the son go down on me mate.

 

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I don't like the middle section either. I respect it but don't like listening to it. I also make playlists of autechres melodic shit and get rid of the fluff wankery tracks. I'm happy with who I am.

 

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On reflection it all feels a bit....post-22258-15380392761314_thumb.jpeg

 

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wouldn't the pretty and melodic parts be more accurately described as 'fluff'? 301031180323782656.png?v=1

Depends what bits you value. Noisy experimentation or melody. I find melody harder to do hence the noisey experimentation is fluff.

 

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wouldn't the pretty and melodic parts be more accurately described as 'fluff'? 301031180323782656.png?v=1

Depends what bits you value. Noisy experimentation or melody. I find melody harder to do hence the noisey experimentation is fluff.

 

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So fol3 on quaristice. Fluff.

 

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I don't like the middle section either. I respect it but don't like listening to it. I also make playlists of autechres melodic shit and get rid of the fluff wankery tracks. I'm happy with who I am.

What do you say? Are we proud, are we brave, or just crazy? Are we shooting at windmills like you?
I won't let the son go down on me mate.

 

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lol you got it :D

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i'm guessing you also plan to run ventolin through a band reject filter

 

Ventolin is an interesting example to discuss.

 

So its 1995, I'm at Uni. I've been listening to Selected Ambient Works 95-92 loads, SAW II loads. The hype around Aphex is at an all time high. The internet wasn't really a big thing yet (it existed, but not many people were on it). So the hype was being driven by NME and Melody Maker and so on. The playing-sandpaper-at-a-club thing was already legend. The SAW II lucid dreaming story was legend. "On" had been released a few years prior, had got into the top 40 and got played on MTV. So there's a new EP out, called Ventolin, the NME says. I take a trip down to HMV to find it (no amazon, no streaming, you had to get your arse down to the shops and rummage around).

 

And, you know, Ventolin. Its an impressive bit of experimentation. Story goes that its supposed to sound like having an asthma attack. He captured that pretty well. I've listened to it all the way through once or twice in the last 23 years, not more than that. I mean it invokes interesting feelings, but I don't actually want to listen to it.

 

The rest of the EP though, fucking amazing. The Coppice, The Marazanvose Mix. Sounded like nothing anyone had done before, so organic and low fi yet still electronic. And then the second disc with the Cylob mix on it.

 

Its interesting that he put Ventolin out at that time when the hype was so high. Like it was literally unplayable on the radio. It really established that he wasn't trying to get popular.

 

And if you wanted to listen to something cool, you put on the Ventolin EP and skip the first track.

 

I Care Because You Do dropped a month later. I like albums you can listen to all the way through without skipping stuff. ICBYD is almost one of those albums, but I would skip Ventolin obviously.

 

Icct Hedral is interesting, because its very intense and noisy and dark but its also very musical and cinematic. You can listen to it and imagine the world ending and folding in on itself or whatever. So Icct Hedral vs Ventolin is interesting to think about because they're both from the same period and both intense and dark but Icct Hedral is deep and impressive but Ventolin is kindof like giving you the finger and jamming a pencil in your ear at the same time.

 

Ventolin is one of my favourite tracks off ICBYD, and one of my favourite tracks by Richard overall - the eerie, echoing synths and grinding beats creates an otherworldly, nightmarish experience that for some reason resonates with me.

 

The Ventolin video (which Richard has stated he hates) I think captures some of that nightmarish vision, and it would be interesting what Richard's vision for a video for the track would be given the opportunity to do it again.

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The 'collapse' part isn't really that out there after a few listens though, is it? It's pretty tuneful compared to something like that bit in 54 cymru beats. The run of beats repeats after the duhhhhh.... duhhhh.... derrrrrrr..., which also repeats. Haha, I don't know how to describe music. 

 

On the general point, I'm lucky enough to like both ends of the spectrum. Lovely lush ambient repetitions, plinky plonk cute shit and the more abrasive, skittering non-repetitive stuff, it's all good. Plus I think if you listen to anything enough times so that you can anticipate and... sing(?!) along in your head then this increases the pleasure of listening. Even tracks from chrome cylinder box (are we allowed to talk about VS on here? lol) have been playing in my head like an earworm days after i've listened sometimes because I've come to know them so well. The early aphex albums put enough goodwill in the bank that I return to the releases until I like them. Basically I just brainwash myself into sincerely liking the new stuff, even if it doesn't grab me on the first few listens. Weird to think about it like that.

 

I think this is what it's like to be a superfan of some group like U2 or something. Everyone else is going to hear the latest album and just shrug but you're going to listen on repeat until you love it. 

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I'm the polar opposite of the majority of this board it seems.  I'm most into the intense, dark, noisy, high energy tracks and have to be in the moody for the soft, fluffy melodic stuff.

 

I Care Because You Do is the pinnacle of RDj's output for me. The whole period leading up to it is just perfect.  On, S.A.W II, and a few others.

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And, you know, Ventolin. Its an impressive bit of experimentation. Story goes that its supposed to sound like having an asthma attack. He captured that pretty well. I've listened to it all the way through once or twice in the last 23 years, not more than that. I mean it invokes interesting feelings, but I don't actually want to listen to it.

 

The rest of the EP though, fucking amazing. The Coppice, The Marazanvose Mix. Sounded like nothing anyone had done before, so organic and low fi yet still electronic. And then the second disc with the Cylob mix on it.

 

 

out of the original + mixes i might like the cylob mix the best, that track is so beautiful. but i do dig the original a lot - the high tone can be grating but the wheeze beats and the melodic lines and atmosphere are lush.

 

it is interesting to see where different people stand on the spectrum of tolerating abrasive music. i've never liked noise music much at all, but i do love some harsh sounds when they're interesting to listen to or when they give additional flavor to otherwise good tracks.

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Would the melody at the end of collapse be as rewarding without the drama in the middle? You can't have light without dark, if it was all just nice it would be sentimental gush. I think the mix of noise and nice is what I admire about the music so much. Thats life isnt it? mental/violent/scary/beautiful/nice/peaceful

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Would the melody at the end of collapse be as rewarding without the drama in the middle? You can't have light without dark, if it was all just nice it would be sentimental gush. I think the mix of noise and nice is what I admire about the music so much. Thats life isnt it? mental/violent/scary/beautiful/nice/peaceful

 

exactly. t69 collapse would be 100000% less intresting without the middle part. durachroma has two of them,,,,even better! he's a masterful storyteller, only with sounds instead of words :) and as always with a good story, there has to be constrast to make it worthwhile, dark and happiness dancing together in harmony!

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If I made my own edit of T69 Collapse with the middle bit chopped out, would that be some kind of sacrilege?

 

We should make a compilation of classic IDM tracks fixed by Watmm, with phudoshin's Coathanger edit and whatever else

 

 

 

Albums "fixed" too.  I am so ready for this!  Selected Ambient Works 85-92 only i and Green Calx are now Sam's Car.

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Some people just prefer nice sounding stuff. For me, the only Aphex I listen to ever is Selected Ambient and a couple other select tracks (Fingerbib, etc).  & my favorite BoC release is A Beautiful Place Out in the Country EP.  

 

It's a nostalgia thing too.  Brings me back to about 16 or 17 years ago when I was discovering and blasting this shit as a little nerd in AOL chat rooms.  The rough and discordant stuff I have never liked-- I would take Lone or Bibio over Autechre or Vsnares any day of the week.

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For the middle section, try not to think "Why doesn't this sound as pleasing as the other 2 sections" and instead just think "How does this help the other 2 sections make more sense?

1st section is before disaster, second is collapse, third is aftermath. Second provides context. Otherwise it's just a jarring cut from "before and after disaster" without knowing what caused the aftermath.

 

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I wish I could actually get weirded out by tracks.  When I put on Aphex or Ae or whoever I'm really just along for the ride.  Anytime something unexpected happens I just think it's interesting.  The Collapse section is obviously something that makes the title track unique, and so it gives it more staying power for me.  It provides something I get less of elsewhere.  The only thing that ever really puts me off in music like this is when it's boring.  Nothing in this EP falls into that category.  I think it's his best work since drukqs.  Tops Syro for me.  It's a lot more focused overall.  

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I wish I could actually get weirded out by tracks.  When I put on Aphex or Ae or whoever I'm really just along for the ride.  Anytime something unexpected happens I just think it's interesting.  The Collapse section is obviously something that makes the title track unique, and so it gives it more staying power for me.  It provides something I get less of elsewhere.  The only thing that ever really puts me off in music like this is when it's boring.  Nothing in this EP falls into that category.  I think it's his best work since drukqs.  Tops Syro for me.  It's a lot more focused overall.  

Oh yeah, I never really understood it when people get weirded out by tracks. It's just sequenced sound people. lol. Maybe a track can have a creepy atmosphere, but 'weird' implies there's something wrong with it.

 

Though I suppose a track sequenced from beginning to end with moaning and flatulence sounds would be pretty weird.

 

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