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Album Review

Among the productions the French label Bip-Hop released in its first two years or so of existence, Twine's :Recorder: stands as quite an achievement. It is one step aside the otherwise pure-electronica format of the label (and the Spaceheads/Max Eastley collaboration The Time of the Ancient Astronaut stood a couple extra steps). First of all, the American duo delivered a strong album that sadly got a bit buried in their plethora of other releases in the surrounding months. Second, the music blends with what the label has been pushing forward (especially in the Bip-Hop Generation CD series) while introducing something different. Among the blips and clicks and electronic manipulations, listeners find other instruments, speech recordings, and that particular post-rock melancholia. Yet, Twine's music eschews clichés to offer something different and greater than the sum of its influences. The opener, "None Some Silver," puts forth a shoegazing electric guitar line that would be nothing more than the endless tune of your neighborhood Godspeed You Black Emperor! wannabes, if it weren't for the noise pollution, electronic enhancements, and general direction the piece takes. Another great moment is "Fine Music," in which a phone conversation (a guy claiming he plays the guitar, but only two songs) is intertwined with a moody piece propelled by lush synthesizers. The album loses momentum halfway through, but ends strong with the deranged "There Is No One Else." A couple of tracks cut awfully abruptly (to the point where you wonder if it was intentional). Otherwise this is a very good album with little possible comparisons. A enhanced section of the CD contains a bonus piece with video by Phase04. ~ François Couture, Rovi


Genre: Electronic

Years Active: '90s, '00s

Twine combine samples, digitally generated tones, and processed instruments into an electronic mix that defies easy categorization. Though they share certain sonic signifiers with laptop artists like Autechre (the use of glitches and digital mistakes, extensive DSP processing), Twine seem to focus more on composition than sound generation or atmosphere, resulting in tracks with a pronounced cinematic bent. Twine's Greg Malcolm and Chad Mossholder started making music together in high school in Cleveland,...
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Recorder, Twine
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