Aphex Twin reissues (4)
...I Care Because You Do / Richard D. James Album
Come To Daddy / Windowlicker
(Warp)


It is truly impossible to overstate the impact, mastery, and perfection of Aphex Twin. He is a powerhouse of electronic music, a pioneer of technology, a true auteur of his generation and a monolith that hovers above generations to come. His output is almost as large as his influence. He’s an artist who refuses to be limited by his impulses as ever changing as they may be. He gives off the sense that he exists outside of the present and doesn’t seem to be concerned with relevance or relatability. He has achieved and maintained a sense of enigma and distance that is almost non-existent in the current pop culture landscape. His music reflects a clear mastery over the technology that is at his disposal but with an eagerness and playfulness that is rarely found in any form of music. Warp records has now reissued a series of full lengths and EP's that at the time of their release, cemented such a reputation and their ability to stand the test of time is truly astonishing. These releases include ...I Care Because You Do, Richard D. James Album, Come To Daddy, and Windowlicker. It is almost futile to say that one Aphex Twin album over another is essential. All of these recordings fall under such classification, as does what comes before, and what he has done since. Regardless, it’s a given that anyone who leaves the record store with these 4 LPs has not only done the right thing, but a necessary thing.
...I Care Because You Do is Aphex Twin's pinnacle of analog technology. This is his last effort before he decided to discard almost everything he had come to rely on both from a technological standpoint but from an aesthetic view as well. It is almost always a good idea to put this record on. It's slouching rhythms and haunting melodies take the perspective he had developed on his previous Ambient Works albums while adding a grittiness that is singular to itself. This record projects a stylized approach that is the result of years of experimentation and education. By 1996, everything had changed, again. The Richard D. James Album marks a firm shift into digital technology and simultaneously, a shift into the future. He could see what the future had in store and eagerly went head first into uncharted territory. His decisions are that of a true innovator by choosing uncertainty over comfort. The results are the glitched-out, digitized grind and bliss that he may be best known for. His body of work leading up to this record would have easily given him license to keep doing what he had become known for, but the essence of Aphex Twin is that his shape is ever-changing. He absorbs influence, and quite literally, machinery and engineering at a rate that is almost inhuman. Come To Daddyand Windowlicker would only make this claim even more apparent while proving that he could contend with the biggest names of the mainstream as well as the underground music scene. The music video that accompanied the title track from Come To Daddy was in heavy rotation at the time of its release, and would become a staple of the 90's just as the villainous, manipulated grin had become inseparable with his name and work.
What these records prove is that Aphex Twin was able to accomplish the extremely difficult task of staking a claim in the electronic / techno / drum & bass scene while simultaneously walking the line of a posturing pop icon, and an enigmatic, underground experimental master-craftsman. This is a combination that is wholly singular to Aphex Twin, and what has made him so essential, both then and now. (Adam)
Check out his classic video here