eMusic Review 0
Autechre's Sean Booth and Rob Brown had forged a stunning debut in 1993's Incunabula, but it was one that sounded mighty similar to other records in the nascent IDM genre, full of the sort of dinky melodicisms and (relatively) undanceable beats that were favored, no doubt, by the robot lounging on the cover of Warp's 1992 seminal Artificial Intelligence compilation.
Amber, released in 1994, is the sound of a duo in transition. They were moving forward, no doubt, as you can hear on the evil drone that opens the record on "Foil," or the industrial energy that speeds "Teartear" to its conclusion through a haze of echoing sirens and massed synths. But there are also clear moments where the duo hasn't quite outgrown its early sound, as on "Slip," which is prototypical IDM — sweeping chords, lightly distorted beats, lots of room for headspace.
An uneven Autechre, however, was better than just about any Warp act at its best at the time, and Amber has enough highlights to ignore the historical context. The album is, unlike much of its work to follow, highly melodic — focused on texture rather than on dizzying algorhythmic beats. Both the aforementioned "Foil" and "Further" are supreme… read more »