My 33 1/3 book, on Aphex Twin's Selected Ambient Works Volume II, was the 5th bestselling book in the series in 2014. It's available at Amazon (including Kindle) and via your local bookstore. • F.A.Q.Key Tags: #saw2for33third, #sound-art, #classical, #juntoElsewhere: Twitter, SoundCloud, Instagram

Listening to art.
Playing with audio.
Sounding out technology.
Composing in code.

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Two More from Aphex Twin

aka user48736353001

The remote user48736353001, aka Richard D. James, aka Aphex Twin, yesterday posted his first SoundCloud track in two months. It was #174 in his account’s feed, and of course the question lingered whether the dam was about to break again.

We have a partial answer. In the past 24 hours, another pair of tracks appeared. “36 Shroommdot [miCro3] [8th dimension transmission]” is an expansive piece, at over 20 minutes perhaps the longest in the user48736353001 account. It’s an apparent improvisation of rangy sounds, tea-kettle whines and morphy noises and shrill waves. It sounds less like a “track” than much of what he’s posted, and more like a free-form run-through of a range of different tools and techniques. In contrast, the brief — well, relatively compact, at 6:24 minutes — “25 rogphlange 1″ places a backbeat behind a select number of such sounds, rendering it more approachable, attractively abrasive. Both tracks are from the 1990s, “rogphlange” listed as “199?” and “Shroommdot” as “1993.”

None of the past 24 hours’ three uploads falls into the ambient category that made 10 user48736353001 tracks fit into the Selected Ambient Works Volume 3 (Beta) playlist I’ve put together.

Check out “36 Shroommdot [miCro3] [8th dimension transmission]” and “25 rogphlange 1″ on their respective SoundCloud pages.

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#174

A new track from Aphex Twin's user48736353001 account

For a few months now I’ve loaded the Aphex Twin page on SoundCloud, aka that of user48736353001, each morning wondering when 173 — long the standing track count — would jump to 174.

And it did, less than 10 minutes ago, with the track “24 Triple D.” If the above embed doesn’t work, click through to the track’s dedicated URL.

It’s a piece of hard rapid synthesis, a sonar beep buried deep in the grinding beat, and the overtones taking on a semblance of human speech. By Aphex Twin standards, it opens in a nearly industrial mode, but in time more familiar slow-moving, comforting waves infuse themselves into the proceedings, though never enough to fully subsume the foreboding, driving beat. The sole accompanying information is a date (1993), and a hashtag for one of Richard D. James’ many monikers: #afx.

Track originally posted at soundcloud.com/user48736353001.

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It’s “Avril 14th”

Celebrate Aphex Twin day with Anthony Fiumara.

It’s April 14, which for some means the day before the due date in the United Staes for income taxes, and for others a reason to celebrate the British electronic musician known as Aphex Twin. “Avril 14th” is one of Aphex Twin’s most loved pieces, and that affection has resulted in a wide number of samplings (Kanye West, in the song “Blame Game”), remixes, and reworkings. The best known reworking is probably the arrangement by John Pickford Richards performed by Alarm Will Sound on its 2005 collection Acoustica: Alarm Will Sound Performs Aphex Twin. A couple days ago, Anthony Fiumara posted his own lovely acoustic-ensemble arrangement:

It’s part of a set of eight Aphex Twin arrangements by Fiumura. Full set first posted at soundcloud.com/anthony-fiumara. More from Fiumura, who is based in Amsterdam, at twitter.com/Anthony_Fiumara and anthonyfiumara.com.

And consider supporting the petition set up, as announced on Medium by Sam Bungey and Larry Ryan, to make Aphex Twin Day official.

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Aphex Twin Organizes His Record Collection

Collating the post-Singularity archival uploads

The musician alternately known as Aphex Twin and user48736353001 and Richard D. James has begun collating his own voluminous SoundCloud uploads. He’s doing it by era. The first of these is labeled “saw1 era,” relating to the period represented by his Selected Ambient Works 85-92 album. There’s no overlap between the “saw1 era” set and the one I’ve compiled of music reminiscent of Selected Ambient Works Volume II, a set I’ve described as Selected Ambient Works Volume III (beta). The main marker is how much the beat was subdued — subsumed — in the transition between 85-92 and Volume II. Of course, the beat later returned with a vengeance, first with a harsh screech on the “Ventolin” single, and then with the rubbery, ecstatic rhythms that marked much of Aphex Twin’s later, mid/late-1990s music.

Because these tracks are likely to disappear at some point, here is the setlist for posterity’s sake:

“Sams Car”
“Afx origTheme”
“Original Chaos Riff”
“Suzanne”
“Nova Robotiks”
“21 Forgotten T”

Set originally posted at soundcloud.com/user48736353001. Thanks to Bruce Levenstein, aka Compact Robot, for pointing out the playlist to me.

Update: Later the same day, the set has expanded to about twice its original length, and has been renamed. It’s now “saw 1.5″ — that is, Selected Ambient Works Volume 1.5, a midpoint between 85-92 and Volume II — and the track list is now:

“Sams Car”
“Afx origTheme”
“Red Alert”
“Suzanne”
“Dance and Play”
“Nova Robotiks”
“21 Forgotten T”
“Lannerlog”
“Bimbongo”
“Symbonsad”
“Original Chaos Riff”

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The SoundCloud Singularity Continues

µ-ZIQ, longtime Aphex Twin associate, joins him in the cloud post-release afterlife

Mike Paradinas’ presence on the comments of the rouge Aphex Twin uploads to SoundCloud was one of the key early confirmation points. Also known as µ-ZIQ, the name under which he among other things occasionally collaborated with Aphex Twin, Paradinas has begun filling up his SoundCloud account with a retro-archive of his often game-like tracks, such as the blippy joy that is “TFM,” a workout for the Technoid DR-550 drum machine. He joins Aphex Twin in uploading his musical memories to SoundCloud, a kind of recording-industry Singularity moment.

If we could vote for what early-1990s birth-of-IDM British-label stalwart would next fill up SoundCloud, I’d vote for Amon Tobin, Funki Porcini, Wagon Christ, Photek, or DJ Krush.

Track originally posted at soundcloud.com.

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