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Aphex Twin's Selected Ambient Works Volume II

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Aphex Twin's Selected Ambient Works Volume II Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Extravagantly vaporous, willfully opaque, rhythmically cunning — Selected Ambient Works Volume II, released by Aphex Twin in 1994, rejuvenated ambient music for the Internet era that was just beginning. It made ambient music — long thought antithetical to percussion — safe for the beat, thus providing a sonic metaphor for our technologically mediated era of countless synchronized nanosecond metronomes. The album's licensing in the U.S. by Sire Records, home to Madonna and the Cure, helped usher in British musician Richard D. James, for whom Aphex Twin is but one of numerous monikers, as a major force in music, electronic or otherwise.

Longtime experimental-music critic Marc Weidenbaum explores the culture in which the music arose, and the culture to which it helped give birth. The book draws from original interviews with Aphex Twin himself, musicians who sampled his work, filmmakers who employed it for their scores, and classical composers who reverse-engineered its fragile textures for performance on traditional instruments. Its sprawling, largely vocal-free tracks as lush as they are reticent to reveal themselves, Selected Ambient Works Volume II readily serves as the background music to its own telling.

Synopsis:

Extravagantly opaque, willfully vaporous — Aphex Twin's Selected Ambient Works Volume II, released by the estimable British label Warp Records in 1994, rejuvenated ambient music for the Internet Age that was just dawning. In the United States, it was his first full length on Sire Records (home to Madonna and Depeche Mode), which helped usher in Richard D. James, for whom Aphex Twin is but one of numerous monikers, as a major force in music, electronic or otherwise.

Faithful to Brian Eno's definition of ambient music, Selected Ambient Works Volume II was intentionally functional: it furnished chill out rooms, the sanctuaries amid intense raves. Choreographers and film directors began to employ it to their own ends, and in the intervening decades this background music came to the fore, adapted by classical composers who reverse-engineer its fragile textures for performance on acoustic instruments. Simultaneously, “ambient” has moved from esoteric sound art to central tenet of online culture. This book contends that despite a reputation for being beat-less, the album exudes percussive curiosity, providing a sonic metaphor for our technologically mediated era of countless synchronized nanosecond metronomes.

About the Author

Marc Weidenbaum founded Disquiet.com, which is focused on the intersection of sound, art, and technology, in 1996. A former editor of Tower Records Pulse! magazine, he's written for Nature, Boing Boing, and the website of The Atlantic. Hes commissioned compositions from such musicians as Scanner, Steve Roden, and Stephen Vitiello, and lectures on the role of sound in the media landscape. He lives in San Francisco.

Table of Contents

Introduction

Background Beats

A Chill-room of One's Own

Bookending Eno

Music for the Ethernet

Runic Tendencies

Volumes I & III

Transcribing & Embedding

Product Details

ISBN:
9781623568900
Author:
Weidenbaum, Marc
Publisher:
Bloomsbury Academic
Author:
Weidenbaum, Marc
Subject:
History & Criticism *
Subject:
Music -- History and criticism.
Subject:
Genres & Styles - Rock
Subject:
Genres & Styles - General
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Publication Date:
20140213
Binding:
Paperback
Language:
English
Pages:
144
Dimensions:
6.5 x 4.75 in 1 lb

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Related Subjects

Arts and Entertainment » Music » General
Arts and Entertainment » Music » Genres and Styles » Electronic
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Arts and Entertainment » Music » Genres and Styles » Rock
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History and Social Science » Politics » United States » Foreign Policy

Aphex Twin's Selected Ambient Works Volume II New Trade Paper
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Product details 144 pages Bloomsbury Academic - English 9781623568900 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , Extravagantly opaque, willfully vaporous — Aphex Twin's Selected Ambient Works Volume II, released by the estimable British label Warp Records in 1994, rejuvenated ambient music for the Internet Age that was just dawning. In the United States, it was his first full length on Sire Records (home to Madonna and Depeche Mode), which helped usher in Richard D. James, for whom Aphex Twin is but one of numerous monikers, as a major force in music, electronic or otherwise.

Faithful to Brian Eno's definition of ambient music, Selected Ambient Works Volume II was intentionally functional: it furnished chill out rooms, the sanctuaries amid intense raves. Choreographers and film directors began to employ it to their own ends, and in the intervening decades this background music came to the fore, adapted by classical composers who reverse-engineer its fragile textures for performance on acoustic instruments. Simultaneously, “ambient” has moved from esoteric sound art to central tenet of online culture. This book contends that despite a reputation for being beat-less, the album exudes percussive curiosity, providing a sonic metaphor for our technologically mediated era of countless synchronized nanosecond metronomes.

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