Intelligence X 100 =
September 23, 2014 12:48 PM   Subscribe

being FactMag's months-in-the-making rundown of the 100 greatest Intelligent Dance Music (IDM) tracks of all time.

For the curious (and, indeed courageous) amongst you, we’ve now pulled together a mammoth YouTube playlist, featuring all of the selected tracks in order.
posted by philip-random (84 comments total) 86 users marked this as a favorite
 
Oh this is awesome and I know like ten people who are going to love this.

IDM: the best music genre for which you have to pre-emptively apologize before explaining the acronym.
posted by griphus at 12:56 PM on September 23, 2014 [24 favorites]


Off to look at this - I wonder how much they're going to bend the term "IDM" (considering it's already a slippery definition).

How many repeat non-offenders will be on this list? Off to look!

I wonder if Anvil Vapre or Come to Daddy are number one. Or wait, Windowlicker. And holy hell if there are not at least 2 or 3 squarepusher songs on there I will be highly upset.
posted by symbioid at 12:56 PM on September 23, 2014 [1 favorite]


Yay - already some non-popular artists at the start, I look forward to finding some new artists/tunes :D
posted by symbioid at 12:58 PM on September 23, 2014


Lots of my personal favourites in there! Viimo especially is a bit of an underappreciated gem, I think.

There's thousands of "but where is???" tracks that could be in there, but Boards of Canada's Telephasic Workshop and Autechre's Nine would be my top missing 2.
posted by Jon Mitchell at 1:01 PM on September 23, 2014 [1 favorite]


Oh fuck. Schnauss. I like, maybe like... 2 songs of his before it all gets so very old and tiring. And IIRC, both of those are remixes LOL...
posted by symbioid at 1:02 PM on September 23, 2014 [1 favorite]


Very happy with the track they chose for Squarepusher, and that it made #4. It was so perfect for where my head was in 1997 that I believe it changed my neural structure completely. Even listening now, it fills my brain up with so many ideas.
posted by naju at 1:02 PM on September 23, 2014 [1 favorite]


I'm simultaneously amazed at how many of these I recognize and floored by how many I don't. Once again I am reminded of how annoyed I am by people who moan that there's no good new music anymore (and have been saying as much since at least 1994).
posted by philip-random at 1:06 PM on September 23, 2014 [6 favorites]


Yeah, I thought I was an IDM baby but I've only heard like 10 of these tracks? God bless FACT.
posted by naju at 1:09 PM on September 23, 2014


Surprised there's no love for Richard H. Kirk, who helped create the genre.
posted by bassomatic at 1:11 PM on September 23, 2014 [2 favorites]


Nice to see familiar names like Autechre, Oval, and Telefon Tel Aviv on the list. It's also exciting how many unfamiliar names are there. Thanks for the great post!
posted by saulgoodman at 1:11 PM on September 23, 2014


I <3 that Squarepusher track!
posted by kenko at 1:15 PM on September 23, 2014


My kingdom for an mp3 download of this...

Also, not the FSOL track I was expecting.
posted by the painkiller at 1:16 PM on September 23, 2014


Wait, fuck a stranger in the ass from vsnares? Really? Of all the great vsnares tracks? Fuck a stranger in the ass is what you go with? OK, fine. Be that way.

I'm predicting, based on naju's comment, come on my selector is the track. I'd choose ultravisitor, welcome to europe, or my sound. I'm so curious though! GAAAAAAH! And yes - so many new things to check out I am so excited!

And what y'all think of the new Aphex? Sounds like Analord a lot to me, which isn't bad, and not a surprise considering I gather it's from the same period? I was disappointed it wasn't glitchtastic, but frankly, it's eminently more listenable than something like drukqs or the RDJ album for example. Not that I don't love those and there aren't great tracks on them (Avril 14th is my fave of all time by RDJ, I think(?))
posted by symbioid at 1:17 PM on September 23, 2014


fans of IDM really were the proto-hipsters & I recall the sheer joy to be had in discovering an obscure electronic group before your friends. This playlist seems lacking two of my favourites from back in the day... Vladislav Delay (probably since most of his tracks were 15+ minutes long) & Amon Tobin (how could they miss him?)
posted by kmkrebs at 1:18 PM on September 23, 2014 [4 favorites]


symbioid, what don't you find listenable about Drukqs? Serious question -- I've had it on compulsive repeat for days and it's possible it's crossed over into a sort of comfy-old-sweater territory where it's so familiar I can't get jarred out of it.
posted by dorque at 1:21 PM on September 23, 2014


kmkrebs: "fans of IDM really were the proto-hipsters & I recall the sheer joy to be had in discovering an obscure electronic group before your friends. "

I swear I'll shut up after this, but...

I remember back in 2001 in Minneapolis, we were waiting outside and there were two lines, the ae group and some other hipster looking kids (waaaaaay more hipster than us), and we asked who they were there for (it was a 2 story club, IIRC) and they were like "Jets to Brazil" and we're like "who?" and they asked us, and we said "Autechre" and they were like "who?"

That was also the last time I had E, IIRC. :(
posted by symbioid at 1:24 PM on September 23, 2014 [2 favorites]


Good point about Amon Tobin above. That's an unfortunate omission.
posted by saulgoodman at 1:24 PM on September 23, 2014 [4 favorites]


Oh no, I love Drukqs, dorque,, I mean it's just that there are some harsh tracks on drukqs that draw me out. I love harsh stuff a lot, too - but as a cohesive flow of listening - it's a bit disjointed as an album. I certainly listen to it a lot more than the 90s stuff, generally. Just as an album, Syro really just is something you can put on and not get drawn out of a flow. (OK, sorry - NOW I'm shutting up)
posted by symbioid at 1:25 PM on September 23, 2014


Vladislav Delay

Oh man I just realized I haven't heard that name since college and considering this thing has Two Lone Swordsmen, Casino vs. Japan, Hrvatski and Mouse on Mars on it, it may as well be any number of the ill-advised mix CDs I handed out to girls I liked around that time.
posted by griphus at 1:25 PM on September 23, 2014 [4 favorites]


Favorited just because of:

Venetian Snares - Fuck A Stranger In The Ass
posted by kuanes at 1:28 PM on September 23, 2014


I didn't know about Richard H. Kirk, seems a little too "stupid" aka four on the floor for this playlist ::pushes glasses up:: thanks for sharking that track though, I'm excited to explore more RHK. :)

No list is going to be comprehensive but idk if Vladislav really fits into the IDM thing, I see him more in line with house and dub but with a nod to minimalism a la Steve Reich's phasing than the broken beat ambience of IDM but this is really just splitting hairs and what's the difference between a raven and a writing desk.
posted by gem tactics at 1:30 PM on September 23, 2014 [1 favorite]


Oh gosh it's like flipping through my old record crates...
posted by Theta States at 1:31 PM on September 23, 2014 [2 favorites]


Jimmy Rabbitte: Soul is the music people understand. Sure it's basic and it's simple. But it's something else 'cause, 'cause, 'cause it's honest, that's it. Its honest. There's no fuckin' bullshit. It sticks its neck out and says it straight from the heart. Sure there's a lot of different music you can get off on but soul is more than that. It takes you somewhere else. It grabs you by the balls and lifts you above the shite.
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 2:00 PM on September 23, 2014 [1 favorite]


No "Toxic Waltz?" Can't take it seriously.
posted by jonmc at 2:02 PM on September 23, 2014


Can someone less lazy than myself make a Spotify playlist of these?
posted by dontjumplarry at 2:05 PM on September 23, 2014 [1 favorite]


Or just a plain text list that isn't spread out over 100 different pages? Ain't nobody got time fo dat.
posted by Foosnark at 2:17 PM on September 23, 2014


I'm surprised not to see any Luke Vibert on this list, although it's possible I'm overlooking one of his more obscure aliases.

I also have to say that their choice of Plaid songs is questionable. I'd go with Eyen.
posted by feloniousmonk at 2:18 PM on September 23, 2014 [5 favorites]


Nevermind, I fail at clicking links.
posted by Foosnark at 2:19 PM on September 23, 2014


Or just a plain text list that isn't spread out over 100 different pages?

the second link goes direct to the Youtube playlist which at least has them all in one scroll.
posted by philip-random at 2:19 PM on September 23, 2014


I think múm is another big oversight.
posted by feloniousmonk at 2:20 PM on September 23, 2014 [3 favorites]


Can someone less lazy than myself make a Spotify playlist of these? (i'm too lazy to even quote this comment correctly)
posted by Potomac Avenue at 2:22 PM on September 23, 2014 [1 favorite]


Hmpf, Autechre: Flutter, how do you dance to that? They should have gone with something with a cooler beat, like Cfern or M62.
posted by Nelson at 2:29 PM on September 23, 2014


Also what was that group that did a record made with a bunch of surgery sounds? They were awesome.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 2:32 PM on September 23, 2014


Aha! Matmos.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 2:33 PM on September 23, 2014


That's Matmos. The album is "a chance to cut is a chance to cure".
posted by a box and a stick and a string and a bear at 2:34 PM on September 23, 2014 [1 favorite]


Spotify playlist, please?
posted by matildaben at 2:38 PM on September 23, 2014


I might be inspired to throw together an Rdio playlist tonight.
posted by naju at 2:41 PM on September 23, 2014 [2 favorites]


I prefer my EDM stupid, I guess. I only know like 4 of these songs.
posted by empath at 2:44 PM on September 23, 2014


Also, I don't understand why Max Cooper is never in these lists.
posted by empath at 2:49 PM on September 23, 2014 [1 favorite]


I'm not really familiar with any of this music, but the stories in this thread suggest it might be a good place to start listening to it. Thanks for posting the link, philip-random!
posted by Rustic Etruscan at 2:57 PM on September 23, 2014


Man I was all "I haven't heard of like any of these guys!" before I noticed there was nothing really consistent in terms of "song - artist" or "artist - song" and then I started recognizing all the names.
posted by Hoopo at 3:13 PM on September 23, 2014


Well I've bought 39 of these tracks in one place or another. And 14 more I have other stuff by them but not that specific track. I'm not sure I've ever seen a best-of list that I agreed with as much as this one. Not that every track is the top choice but they all seem pretty reasonable. (My favorite Autechre is Cipater, Rettic Ac, and the transition between them)

I'm thrilled to see the Merck folks so well represented. Adam Johnson, Mr. Projectile, Proem, Machine Drum, Brothomstates, & (sorta) Twerk <3

Also I just realized that somehow Leafcutter John escaped the great encoderizing however many years back. Which makes me wonder what else slipped through the gaps. I guess I'm going rooting through all my old physical media tonight!
posted by aubilenon at 3:13 PM on September 23, 2014


Hmpf, Autechre: Flutter, how do you dance to that

With a lawyer and musicologist on hand, just like the packaging says.
posted by aubilenon at 3:21 PM on September 23, 2014 [9 favorites]


hey should have gone with something with a cooler beat, like Cfern

I hadn't realized that DMT had been so popular in the 70s disco scene.

Acroyear2 is a good compromise between early and middle Autechre. But, I don't know what happened after Confield... they became acid casulaties? they fired the intern who was making the really good tracks? they stopped repackaging fake Autechre tracks off the internet?

also, the new vsnares album sucks.
posted by ennui.bz at 3:35 PM on September 23, 2014 [1 favorite]


I once played #11 on my college station and called it IDM and had a listener call me up and argue with me about the genre and whether it applied to the song or not...
posted by Divest_Abstraction at 3:38 PM on September 23, 2014


but idk if Vladislav really fits into the IDM thing, I see him more in line with house and dub but with a nod to minimalism a la Steve Reich's phasing than the broken beat ambience of IDM

Believe it or not, there's a thing for that (at least his Luomo stuff) - microhouse. Even though it has the entry point of house, it can be really sublime. There's a young Russian guy doing similar things, bringing in more of the 80s synth pop Madonna appropriated and brought mainstream: Phil Gerus. Worth a listen.


My favorite Autechre is Cipater, Rettic Ac, and the transition between them

Absolutely. Although it's a deep cut, Autechre's Bronchusevenmx24 is really popular, and may be my favorite. Cichli is also beautiful. Cichlisuite, sickly sweet.

Here's a fun Autechre trick. If you have Cichlisuite on vinyl, slow Yeesland down to 33rpm around 8 measures in - it's a totally different, amazing track.

Cylob made the list, but I think FOID is a little stronger. Maybe it sounded too much like Aphex to make the cut.

Great post. btw for more IDM listening somafm has a pretty good station.
posted by four panels at 4:03 PM on September 23, 2014


But, I don't know what happened after Confield

Yeah, except for me it's not "after Confield" it's "Confield and after". I mean all the songs still sound like they're about how sad it would be to be a robot without any feelings, which is something I like. But I have a lot of trouble finding the syntax to their Confield-and-after stuff. I'm sure the logic is still there and maybe if I listened more I'd pick up on it better? But I don't feel rewarded for doing that. OTOH Gantz Graf still works for me - is that because I first saw it with the video? (though actually I kinda like this video more than the official one)

I just don't know.
posted by aubilenon at 4:09 PM on September 23, 2014


Very happy with the track they chose yt for Squarepusher, and that it made #4. It was so perfect for where my head was in 1997 that I believe it changed my neural structure completely. Even listening now, it fills my brain up with so many ideas.

Haha, that's exactly the track I was thinking of when I saw your post.
posted by Sebmojo at 4:18 PM on September 23, 2014


If my list had to be one track long, it would be Autechre Flutter, so hooray for that pick. I loved the song before I even knew the back story.
posted by nev at 4:58 PM on September 23, 2014


also, the new vsnares album sucks.

I miss the days when the reasonable response to that would be "Which one? There's been four in the last six months."
posted by a box and a stick and a string and a bear at 5:32 PM on September 23, 2014 [2 favorites]


Insane drums aside, Cap.IV off Autechre's Gantz Graf EP actually has some lovely playful melodies and samples burbling away in the background.
posted by Jon Mitchell at 5:53 PM on September 23, 2014


If Aquinas reasoned that even dogs have no souls, how then can dance music be intelligent?
posted by newdaddy at 7:09 PM on September 23, 2014


If we're listing notable omissions: Funkstorung, maybe best known for their Bjork remix.
posted by junco at 7:32 PM on September 23, 2014


I actually liked the new vsnares. Did anybody hear Poemsss? His side project with Joanne Pollock?

I love this track a lot. But if you didn't like the new VSnares (which seemed to have a few tracks that seem like they were tossed from the poemss sessions), then you might not like it, but I like it.

As for Autechre. I think their new work is still solid. Funny thing - for a long time, after Confield, I thought that Draft 7.30 and Untilted were really great, but then Quaristice.Quadrange EP & Oversteps came along... Now I rarely listen to Draft and Untilted. Exai is solid, if I'm in the mood. Some killer tracks especially when you crank the bass up -- bladelores and YJY UX. Fuck though Zeiss Contarex is also one of my faves. Just too many good ae tracks.

I think my alltime favorite autechre is probably known(1). see on see is great (and if anyone thinks autechre doesn't still have stuff that hearkens back to the old days - listen to see on see and tell me that there's not a lot of vietrmx.
-----------------

Wait did they have Cex on there? Because he got some good shit. And I saw Kettel, but not Ochre? And what about Wisp?

Ochre - Drink Malk
Kettel - Kroost Kids (is my pick for Kettel)
Wisp - Negions Fall
Cex - Theme Song to Sex
Datach'i - Dizzy Fizz (bleep - no youtube link - last track on album -- I had an apocalyptic dream where the Empire State Building was being roasted on a rotisserie to this song once -- I think I might have watched AI shortly before then and the whole skyscraper/end of earth thing was happening - and the cartoon music of this just seemed to fit the concept of a silly black and white film of a rotisserating(?) Empire State Building)

Definitely missing Amon Tobin as mentioned above, and what about Clark?

Manitoba/Caribou, Tycho, Lone, Bibio, Dimlite, Daedelus? Some of those are more like a live band, of course, but it's hard to draw the lines on what the hell IS IDM anyways, I guess, but still...

Those would be my picks to replace some (at least - get the fuck rid of Schnauss, and probably Freescha)
posted by symbioid at 7:56 PM on September 23, 2014 [1 favorite]


As far as latter-day Ae goes I really liked Untilted, Quaristice (that linked track cracks me up, especially the disemvoweled title), and Exai.
posted by en forme de poire at 8:08 PM on September 23, 2014


I wonder if they deliberately left out some good stuff just so it wouldn't be all BLAH BLAH WARP BLAH BLAH. Like LFO or Seefeel.

They could have changed the Brotohomstates track to something that wasn't on Warp, like his exquisite remix of (fellow demoscener) MD's Appelsap.

I agree with everyone about Amon Tobin. Though it would be really hard to pick a single track.

I think it's odd to pick something from Mauver for Bola - it seemed like their weakest EP to me.

Am I the only one who likes Jake Mandell's Love Songs For Machines?
posted by aubilenon at 8:22 PM on September 23, 2014 [1 favorite]


A few assorted thoughts follow: It's funny because I often feel like "eh, I'm not really in the mood to listen to Autechre" but if I force myself to listen past the first 15s or so I usually listen for a long time. Back when I was still doing wet lab work I would listen to them over and over while I was running experiments, especially between the hours of 1 and 5 am... something about having something repetitive to do with my hands got me into a mental state where I could appreciate it more.

Also, man, Prefuse 73 had a really good run of a couple of albums there. Uprock Narratives and One Word Extinguisher are still amazing today.

I might have chosen a different Boards track but I think "Everything You Do Is A Balloon" might be one of the best summaries of what BoC has been about - hard to pick another single track by them that really spans what they're about.

I guess technically adding this would be redundant with Oval because Markus Popp worked on it, but one artist who I love who's unrepresented in this list is So, a one-off collaboration between Popp and Eriko Toyoda. Untitled A and Untitled C, for your listening pleasure. while I'm floating around in this warm bath of clicks and cuts, Dorine Muraille's Dopees is also wonderful, especially that section near the end

But guys, the most glaring omission has to be Caecelia, by Fennesz, right?
posted by en forme de poire at 8:30 PM on September 23, 2014


I agree the relative lack of Tigerbeat6 is a bit disappointing. Cex for sure, and then looking back TB6 also released Max Tundra's 2nd album stateside! I mean. Max Tundra! How can you go wrong.
posted by en forme de poire at 8:44 PM on September 23, 2014 [1 favorite]


Some good stuff in there, but overall ... too too hipster.

OTOH most FACT mixen score 5-6/10 for me, so they must be printing to some other demographic. De gustibus.
posted by Twang at 9:52 PM on September 23, 2014


Here's a plain text list of the songs, it seems the Rdio's and Spotify's don't have enough of them to make a playlist worthwhile.
posted by postagepaid at 9:53 PM on September 23, 2014 [2 favorites]


Dunno, Surgeon's FACT mix is great if you can track that down.
posted by en forme de poire at 10:04 PM on September 23, 2014


Yeah there's a couple of pretty challenging borderline noxious ones in there.

No best of list would be complete without Australia's best electronica outfit, Seekae: Yurai, Three. Full disclosure, I know 'em, but yeah they are IDM heroes down here.
posted by dontjumplarry at 10:06 PM on September 23, 2014


(Joy Orbison's too, if you like house)
posted by en forme de poire at 10:06 PM on September 23, 2014


My "but what about..." would be Akufen, who does sublime microhouse. Check out My Way.

They got the Two Lone Swordsmen album right, but "Gay Spunk" is far more... intelligently danceable? than "As Wordly Pleasures etc."
posted by El Mariachi at 11:15 PM on September 23, 2014


I wonder if they deliberately left out some good stuff just so it wouldn't be all BLAH BLAH WARP BLAH BLAH. Like LFO or Seefeel .


It's on Warp, but LFO's Blown is basically my platonic ideal of elegaic, quietly ecstatic IDM.
posted by Jon Mitchell at 11:37 PM on September 23, 2014


But guys, the most glaring omission has to be Caecelia , by Fennesz, right?

The term IDM is both loosey and goosey but "has some kind of beat" is, I feel, pretty essential to the extremely liberal "dance music" aspect of it.

Oh shit, have I turned into one of those people from 90's usenet who's decided they are the arbiter of what is or is not IDM??

I TAKE IT BACK EVERYTHING IS IDM!
posted by aubilenon at 12:07 AM on September 24, 2014 [1 favorite]


While I've got my IDM-listening ears on, some other fantastic tracks that aren't, but could easily have been on here:

Orbital - The Girl With The Sun In Her Head - while most people wouldn't class them as IDM, exactly, big chunks of their work are, in my mind, and I don't see a good reason to exclude them just because they're incredibly well known and don't have crazy drum edits.

mu-ziq: Johnny Maastricht - super amped up jungle/grime - not a million miles away from being his version of a My Red Hot Car or Windowlicker

Marumari - Rocket Summer - somewhere between Mouse On Mars, Boards Of Canada and Daft Punk, his tracks remind me of the aural equivalent of a tilt-shift photo, they're sort of tinily whimsical and toylike.

Jackson and his Computerband - Utopia. I'm not really sure how to describe this, but it is lush and excellent.
posted by Jon Mitchell at 12:11 AM on September 24, 2014 [3 favorites]


The term IDM is both loosey and goosey but "has some kind of beat" is, I feel, pretty essential to the extremely liberal "dance music" aspect of it.

I could be persuaded, but then wouldn't you have to say that most of SAW II isn't IDM? That just doesn't feel right to me. Besides, if you're going to have an Oval track on this list...
posted by en forme de poire at 2:09 AM on September 24, 2014 [1 favorite]


P.S. A Chance To Cut Is A Chance To Cure is totally wonderful, particularly the gloriously silly/brilliant Spondee. Haven't thought about that album in years.
posted by en forme de poire at 2:14 AM on September 24, 2014


Anyway I think we can all agree that "Caecilia" is "glitch" even if it's not "IDM" holy christ did i seriously just write that
posted by en forme de poire at 2:19 AM on September 24, 2014 [1 favorite]


I find the name intelligent dance music as irritating as some people find the name electronica. Historically electronica was used as a category in record shops to have somewhere to file electronic music that was not dance music or ambient music. Therein lies the rub with the IDM moniker, for it is not music that is made for people to dance to. I think it has its roots in college radio and the desire to define something that was not mainstream electronic music in a way that appealed to the ego. Whatever you call this music, I like it and enjoy listening to it.

Jon Oliver has done a lot to open my eyes to a world of IDM/electronica that I had no idea existed, away from the white college student world (into a black college student world ; )

Obviously in creating a list of 100 intelligent dance music tracks there are excluded 100 tracks that are electronic, intelligent and make you want to dance. Such is life. Assuming we are dealing with electronic music that is not for dancing to here are some things:

Modular synthesis from Solvent

Here is a nice track by Hiatus Kayaote

A fun little ditty by Clean Bandit (yes that Clean Bandit)
posted by asok at 2:46 AM on September 24, 2014 [1 favorite]


If you are in Melbourne, Australia you can listen to Shake the Dust on Kiss FM now (8:30pm - 10:00pm) 87.6FM 'Specialising in Glitch hop, Midtempo, Drum & Bass, Downtempo, IDM & More!'. Unfortunately their stream doesn't seem to be working, so the rest of the world is SOOL.
posted by asok at 3:32 AM on September 24, 2014


Incidentally, I've only just discovered the 'Drukqs tracks at 50-70 percent speed' thing on Youtube. Completely transforms many of them in a rather special way - for example, Vordhosbn. I would put some more links in, but YouTube is Flaky McFlakovich for me right now (which makes this thread particularly frustrating...)
posted by Devonian at 5:15 AM on September 24, 2014 [1 favorite]


I was sad but unsurprised to see that Kelpe didn't make it in. This guy's criminally unknown, and he's released what I think is one of the finest IDM albums of all time, Ex Aquarium. It's got this friendly aquatic feel going on. It's very uplifting for IDM. Very melodic, interestingly textured, and just great. The whole album is uploaded as one YouTube video here.
posted by One Second Before Awakening at 7:49 AM on September 24, 2014 [2 favorites]


Incidentally, I've only just discovered the 'Drukqs tracks at 50-70 percent speed' thing on Youtube. Completely transforms many of them in a rather special way -

nice. reminds me of a friend who, back in the days when Jungle and Drum And Bass were all the rage, refused to listen to anything where the machine was drumming faster than a human could. He just didn't see the point of it. I'd generally argue that it was good for driving, commuting in general, but in general I came to agree with him. And still do. I tend to glom onto the stuff that has a little "patience" in it.
posted by philip-random at 9:43 AM on September 24, 2014


I was getting annoyed with having to listen to this via Youtube in a browser, so I'm pleased to report youtube-dl -f 140 'https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLg5ScSqSDXssRwFxw2FihfGfGg2A_ky96' works to download the audio. Requires a recent version of youtube-dl.
posted by Nelson at 10:04 AM on September 24, 2014 [2 favorites]


A pretty good list, all in; plenty of stuff that I own/have heard, some I heard and had totally forgotten about*, lots I knew of but didn't know, and lot that's new. Joe Muggs, one half of the compiling team, is a man who knows his stuff. He's one of the most enthusiastic and knowledgeable folk writing about electronic music there is. (Full disclosure: I've met him a couple of times and we have a good few friends in common.)

Flutter is pretty much unimpeachable, and Aphex Twin's On is great, but I almost prefer the µ-Ziq and Reload remixes of the latter to the original, though I'm glad to see that Tom Middleton and Mark Pritchard (who are Reload, among about 300 other aliases, both together and solo) were well represented elsewhere in the list. That said, if I was including one of their own tracks (rather than one of their remixes) I think I might have gone for Antacid II rather than Antacid, or maybe Link's The Augur, which I absolutely love, especially for the way that it threatens for about two bars to become a big, four to the floor stomper at 3:30, before discreetly backing off in favour of being something altogether more restrained.

And I know that the whole list is more quote-unquote IDM, rather than including Detroit stuff, but if you're going to include one of Speedy J's loveliest releases, licenced from Plus-8 to Warp, then surely there's room for Carl Craig's (in his 69 guise) Desire, or his (under his own name) At Les, two of his most rich, gorgeous productions.

Oh, and echoing someone upthread: where Fennesz? I'd have gone for the title track of Endless Summer, meself.

*the best of which was Murcof's Memoria.
posted by Len at 11:19 AM on September 24, 2014 [2 favorites]


I put together the Rdio playlist. Half the tracks are missing, not surprisingly, but it's still 335 minutes of goodness.
posted by naju at 12:59 PM on September 24, 2014 [1 favorite]


Here's what I would have added to the list (that hasn't been mentioned here yet—good additions everyone). Something from:

Secede's Tryshasla (Leraine or Born in a Tropical Swamp)

Gridlock's Formless (Return or Chrometaphor)

BT's This Binary Universe (1.618)

and maybe Access to Arasaka's :Port (zproc3.40mc03)
posted by Backslash at 1:51 PM on September 24, 2014


OK - How many tracks on here are newer tracks? I just realized, most of the ones I know are older... I try to keep up as I can, but it seems that Warp pushes a lot more hipster non-IDM stuff - of course they keep the mainstays around, but when I'm on Bleep, for example, it's a lot of dubstep-influenced stuff or indiepop. I've found some good stuff on there that I've bought, but nothing is really IDM on the storefront.

What are some good *newer* releases of the recent past, say, 5-7 years (that aren't autechre/squarpusher/boc/aphex/u-ziq/v-snares - since I keep up with those guys for the most part)?
posted by symbioid at 8:13 PM on September 24, 2014


I should add I mentioned Ochre and Wisp upthread so I know their work and I also know Kelpe and Secede as others have mentioned, so, I guess no need to mention them. I suppose it's less about albums and more about artists that I'm curious about...
posted by symbioid at 8:14 PM on September 24, 2014


symbiod: Most of these I haven't heard enough of to recommend beyond one or two albums (exception: Jon Hopkins, though he's kind of borderline IDM), but here's some stuff I've been listening to that's newish. (if any of these strike you as too tech house or ambient or glitch or something instead of IDM well feel free to un-listen to it)

Lorenzo Montana
The Cyclist
Shammen Delly
Lone
Jon Hopkins
Floex (he did the soundtracks to Machinarium and Samarost 2 if you've played those)
Benjamin Damage - his album Heliosphere sounds a lot like 1993 Aphex Twin, if you want more of that
Alex Banks
Kiln if it's not too downtempo to count
posted by aubilenon at 11:53 PM on September 24, 2014


reminds me of a friend who, back in the days when Jungle and Drum And Bass were all the rage, refused to listen to anything where the machine was drumming faster than a human could. He just didn't see the point of it.

Your friend must not be into speed metal then. And he might have forgotten the origins of drum'n'bass and jungle. I assumed the original Amen break was sampled at its original speed as it was performed in the 1960s, but Wikipedia informs me the original break was slowed down, which makes sense, as it was originally used in hip-hop, not the high-speed dnb breaks.

And there are some live drummers who play drum'n'bass. I could only think of KJ Sawka off the top of my head, but this topic was also discussed on the Rate Your Music message board, with embedded videos there, to boot.
posted by filthy light thief at 11:24 AM on September 29, 2014


I hadn't heard of most of these and had only heard one of these tracks so this whole list has been one delightful discovery after another. Thank you for posting this and thank you FACT for compiling it.

One surprise note of unexpected familiarity was Kettel's "Centercourt" especially the rap clip at the beginning. I could not place where I had heard it before. A search lead to a website with a comment that directed me to a bootleg track of Luke Vibert, "Studio Session D1T2" which I hadn't heard of or heard either, but I could hear the samples more clearly. The rap is a chopped up clip of the first two lines of "9th Wonder" by Digable Planets which is cleverly remixed with a bunch of other memory ticklers late in the D1T2 sequence. Most of the rest of "Centercourt" draws from the first part of D1T2 whose sources are easier to place.

That was fun! Thanks again!
posted by wobh at 10:30 PM on October 9, 2014 [1 favorite]


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