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

Autechre on Guitar (MP3)

15 years later, an abstract beat gem revived on a six-string

The songlessness of experimental music is often overstated. Autechre’s distressed digital inventions, for example, gain from their cover art an association with impossible architectures, things that CAD software can imagine but no general contractor could actually build. XYZRKX of Chicago, aka Jon Monteverde, took the challenge upon himself to transform the turntable-laden, scratch-infused, murky wonderment of “Goz Quarter,” off the 15-year-old Envane EP by Autechre, and turn it into something playable — playable on guitar, no less. His resulting work trades the subsumed hip-hop of the original for something closer to dub, and while hearing the melodyishness of “Goz Quarter” is a pleasure, the real richness of the track is how the dubby environment has the echoed strings and bits of percussion swirling around each other and never … quite … coming … into … sync. By mimicking the song’s melodic path, XYZRKX has produced a cover; by re-engineering the piece’s inherent complexity, he has produced a tribute.

Track originally posted at More on XYZRKX/Monteverde at

By Marc Weidenbaum

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