At long last the 13 year drought has come to an end with producer and composer Richard D. James’, better known as Aphex Twin, return with Syro. Since his most recent full album in 2001, Drukqs, James has put his music career on for what would seem like an entire musical era spending his time reportedly living the domestic dad life on a Scottish countryside.
After all these years it appears Syro isn’t straying too far from James’ typical 90’s IDM roots. Each of Syro’s tracks appear like that of a digital hiccup, “PAPAT4 [pineal mix]” being one, but don’t let the name stray you from the glorious path of experimental glitch ambient post-breakcore IDM.
“Minipops 67 [source field mix]” starts you off right in a kind of mid-90’s groove with the sort of signature breakbeat edits only James’ is capable of. The tracks gradually move on with a blend of funk drumbeats, acid baselines, high string-synth, and even some sci-fi chords putting you right under those Grey’s UFO. Will you end up on an operating table jamming out to Aphex Twin’s refined sound? Possibly. But any Ancient Astronaut Theorist will applaud your venture into James’ electro-experimental realm.
The focus on detail and especially impressive completeness each track features, and harmonizes with each other, is an improvement and an easier listen in comparison to Come to Daddy’s rushes of noise and satanic vocals. Though complexity is intrinsic to every millisecond of auditory vibration it is never unbalanced and each piece of Syro’s experience will bring you into a twang of audio interstellar bliss. It seems these past years have really brought together Aphex Twin, and created an album worthy of any electronic enthusiast’s applause, making it just as enjoyable for the familiar and much more approachable for the novice.
By: Ana-Sophia Brande