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Originally inspired by the rhythms and tones of electro, Sean Booth and Rob Brown formed Autechre in Sheffield, England at the dawn of the ‘90s. The duo went on to release work that became increasingly experimental, and for a while they were seen as the cutting edge of the genre known as IDM. On the 2008 release, Quaristice, Autechre presents 20 tracks that range far and wide. The opener, “Altibzz,” is 2:52 of swooony mellowness while “The Plc” percolates in ways that Autechre fans will immediately recognize. “IO” splats and chugs as we hear distorted vocal fragments that reduce language to sound effects. “Paralel Suns,” which might be the scariest thing here, evokes a sense of last-man-on-the-planet desolation. “Fol3” flirts with musique concrète; are the audio sources slamming doors and shuffling feet? “90101-5I-I” comes off like techno made by a drunken robot or some other addled machine. After all the sonic wandering, Quaristice ends deliciously with the mysterious “Outh9X,” the album’s longest cut. It’s a spacious, compelling piece that shows the group is still interested in exploring new turf.

Customer Reviews

Headphone Commute Review

It's hard to believe that Sean Booth and Rob Brown have been experimenting with sound for over 16 years now, ever since their first release, Incunabula, on Warp Records. It is perhaps their unique programming approach to analog synths, custom Max/MSP patches, micro granular effects, and mathematical rhythms, that pushed the envelope of sound exploration to the common studio techniques of today. Can the UK duo continue and reinvent the sound? I'm on my fifth listen of Quaristice, Autechre's 9th album, and the definitive answer is: yes. The twenty tracks on a digital release which I snatched from bleep (including exclusive artwork for each track!), maintain the indisputably unique Autechre sound. The beats are still chopped, the sound waves decomposed, and the structure erratically twisted. But unlike Autechre's previous LP, Untilted, this 2008 release is warmer, less noisier, and at times even melodic (there are even strings buried deep in one of the tracks). The genre starts to glide closer to abstract and minimal ambient, with an occasional glitchy quality of other worldliness. If by some miracle this is your first Autechre experience, brace yourself for a unique and unforgettable experience, if you can hold on. For the rest of us, it's just a necessity for our complete anthology. Too bad that the special, limited to 1000 copies edition, with an additional CD and a photo-etched steel casing sold out within the first 12 hours of announcement.

Best release in years, maybe their entire career.

Quaristice is the best Autechre album in years. After seeing how experimental they could get with Untilted its refreshing to get back to a more linear, beat oriented album. The opening track Altibizz is a soft ambient peice that sets the tone for the rest of the album. Hovering between the avant-garde experimentalism thats been their staple over the last 8 years, and getting back to their more beat oriented records of the early 90s, Quaristice is perfect portrait of a band who has spent their career trying to find something new and exciting through sonic experimentation. PlyPhon and Tankakern are appropriately bite-sized nuggets of pure genius that don't take 3 minutes of ambiance to lead into, they just come right out and grab ahold of you--and then transport you 50 years into the future. In fact, only 3 tracks are over 5 minutes long, which is pretty unique considering other albums. Many of the tracks on this album surprise you as you continue to listen to them (Simmm, Perlence, Steels), the production is impeccable, I'd have to say this is by far one of the best Autechre albums in years, if not one of the best of their career. If you are looking for something new and different that challenges you as a listener, will put you into a completely new world and place, I highly recommend you get this album.

New Direction

If you're looking for another Confield or Draft this isn't it. Autechre's new album has a more ambient feel, with much shorter songs and more of a range of music. Best tracks: Simmm Altibzz Tankakern


Formed: 1987 in Rochdale, Greater Manchester, Eng

Genre: Electronic

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

Like Aphex Twin, Autechre were about as close to being experimental techno superstars as the tenets of their genre and the limitations of their audience allowed. Through a series of full-length works and a smattering of EPs on Warp, Clear, and their own Skam label, Autechre consistently garnered the praise of press and public alike. Unlike many of their more club-bound colleagues, however, Autechre's Sean Booth and Rob Brown had roots planted firmly in American electro, and though the more mood-based,...
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