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Aphex Twin's Selected Ambient Works Volume II: 2 (33 1/3) by [Weidenbaum, Marc]
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Aphex Twin's Selected Ambient Works Volume II: 2 (33 1/3) Kindle Edition

3.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Length: 144 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Review

Mentioned on "Line Out" (The Stranger.com), February 2014 "If you're already a fan of Aphex Twin, you'll revel in Weidenbaum's deep dive into one of the artist's signature works. If not, you'll be surprised to learn that you've likely already heard his music in one form or another." - S.T. Vanairsdale"I love how it evokes the way music circa 1994 was suffused with unknowable data." --Rob Sheffield"The chillout room masterpieces of Aphex Twin get the business from incisive writer Marc Weidenbaum. And really, the pairing couldn't be any more delicious." --Marke Bieschke, San Francisco Bay Guardian"A must-read for those interested in the artist." --Alarm Will Sound"Like all good critical studies, Aphex Twin's Selected Ambient Works Volume II doesn't provide the illusion of closure; rather, it expands minds, fostering the creation of textual meaning. I can offer no higher praise" - Paul Gleason, "Caught in the Carousel"

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. He s 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.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 813 KB
  • Print Length: 144 pages
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Academic; 1 edition (13 Feb. 2014)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00I078PD4
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
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  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #534,081 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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By Colin McCartney TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 3 Jun. 2014
Format: Paperback
Never was the phrase "Trying to write about music is like trying to knit a gas jumper" more apt than here.

On the one hand, anyone buying a book about the Aphex Twin expecting to learn more about this most publicity-shy of artists only has themselves to blame.

On the other hand, having read Chris Ott's decent book on Unknown Pleasures (also from the 33 1/3 series) I expected something passable.

There is an awful lot of pointless discussion in this book. There's nothing wrong per se in reading someone else's thoughts on the Aphex Twin's second album "Selected Ambient Works Volume II" - even if their musings don't contain any new information, but here Marc Weidenbaum wastes space and time on such topics as the track names on Gracenote, (pedantically) why there was never a volume 1 (the Aphex Twin's previous release having been titled "Selected Ambient Works 85-92": this discussion could apply to any number of releases Marc, e.g. Abba's "Greatest Hits" and "Greatest Hits Vol. 2") and what volume 3 might sound like.

As an introduction to the album this book fails with its confusing prose and general lack of basic information about the artist. The topics that the author tries to touch on are more suitable for a thesis or a text book than a 127 page book about a classic, if quirky, album. If you want an introduction to the record, just buy the record - it'll probably cost you about the same anyway.

Controversially, Marc Weidenbaum appears to presume that Richard D. James was influenced by Brian Eno in the making of this record, but I personally don't think that can be taken as read and I didn't find it a useful parallel.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
As a fan of Aphex Twin for as long as the author and as someone who has followed Warp records and Rephlex for the last 18 years I spent most of my time reading this thinking "why haven't I written this book myself already". Unsurprisingly lacking new information from RDJ himself, the author speaks with other figures related to the release of the album and people who have been influenced by it since. In these interviews there are some interesting stories and some new information comes to light, but little to add anything to the mysterious making of SAW II 20 years ago. The section on RDJ's signing to Sire records is not one I've seen discussed elsewhere and there's a nice interview about the Alarm Will Sound reinterpretations.

Ultimately, this is a slightly unfullfilling text for any long term fans, but possibly a good introduction to anyone interested in one of the most unique and opaque albums of the 20th century. My advice: get the album, fall asleep to it and draw your own conclusions on how it was made and why.
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