Album #280: Autechre – SIGN

  • Released: 2020
  • Origin: Rochdale, England
  • Label: Warp
  • Best Track: Metaz form8

After being spoilt rotten for new releases over the last few Fridays, I couldn’t see much at all that interested me today. Oh Sees and HEALTH both have new albums out, but the rule of no more than one album per artist I set myself at the start of this challenge means I can’t do them – especially annoying with Oh Sees because on first listen, I think I prefer their new one to the one I reviewed.

Anyway, I’ve gone with the 14th album from electronic veterans Autechre. I’ve never listened to them before, and I don’t know what to make of this record to be honest. Everything about it is abstract, from its track names like ‘si00’ and ‘sch.mefd 2’, to the sounds of tracks like ‘au14’ that are like ball being batted about in a digital squash court. ‘Metaz form8’ stood out for me as being the best track for its slow, buzzing aura, but the whole thing’s a bit peculiar, and I would say a little samey.

I’ve heard that you have to listen to Autechre a lot before it starts to piece itself together as anything but noise. I’m not sure I have the time or inclination to though. Like with Yo La Tengo’s new album last week, it’s fine as background noise while doing something else.

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