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4.3 out of 5 stars
4.3 out of 5 stars
Format: Vinyl|Change
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on 13 March 2017
Brilliant album. Lovely artwork and sounds great on vinyl
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on 30 May 2010
Four Tet, alongside his contemporary Burial (who Kieran Hebdan aka Four Tet did a 12'' with called Moth/Wolf Cub) has a knack for producing electronic music with real soul. Just listen to the chopped up vocals repeating the album title on first track 'Angel Echoes', or the way 'Plastic People' cleverly samples 60's girl-group The Chiffons 'Nobody Knows What's Going On' to nostalgic effect. Some people may be perturbed that Hebden has chosen such rigid and traditional structures for this album, but I feel confident that this is him tinkering with a well-worn formula and squeezing something new out of it, 'til his next album which will be something different entirely. 'Love Cry' may seem (dare I say) dull for the first four minutes with a continuous drum-loop, but when the hissing vocal eases in it felt to me like the wait was worth it for the euphoric lift. Last song 'She Just Likes to Fight' loses the beat but replaces it with a guitar melody so effortlessly evocative that it makes me pity those bands that try to meld synthesisers and guitars to such convoluted effect (cough* Delphic, Klaxons, cough*). This is a wonderful album that only evades five stars because I know Four Tet is capable of even more. Here's to whatever he does next!
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on 21 August 2011
I write this as an electronic music 'novice'. Or maybe I should just say that I have only a passing interest in the genre. There's a very few electronic artists (leaving aside ambient music..Hecker, Eno, Roach, Rich et. all) that I enjoy listening to actively and these include the likes of Boards of Canada, Aphex Twin, Mum, Animal Collective (circa Merriweather Post Pavilion), Massive Attack, etc. I can now add Four Tet to that very short list. I look forward to discovering the rest of his work.

The one reason I usually can't get into electronic music is that it all starts to sound the same after a while. Also a lot of it sounds 'manufactured', as if there was a common template available to everyone and only adding some minor variations would qualify it as a new song. I also don't like the fact that a lot of electronic (especially dance) music tends to be a bit too busy for its own good.

And that's what I really appreciate about this record. It breathes. It actually has superb dynamics and does not shove a barrage of beats or breaks down one's throat. This is one of the most natural sounding electronic records I've ever heard. Subtle, intimate, intelligent (in its use of beats and vocal samples). There might not seem to be a lot going on at the first listen but the songs gradually unfold (pardon the pun) to reveal their simple beauty. I won't go into discussing specific songs as this is a record meant to be heard as a whole for it to have the greatest impact. But a special mention must go to the closer 'She just likes to fight' which has a sense of nostalgia and longing that takes me back many years. It's stunningly beautiful.

So if you are like me and just trying your hand at this genre, this record should be on the top of your wish list. Buy the vinyl or the CD, listen to it on a good stereo, sit back with your drink of choice, filter out all thoughts of the ugly world outside and let this record wash over you with its lush soundscapes.
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on 29 May 2011
Either you clicked on four tet looking for more of the same, and if you did, you found the hidden gem, congratulations, if you didn't- this is the best mistake of your life - just listen to it and lose yourself, there are so few artists you can do that to nowadays, just take a punt on this, you will not regret it. [...] - whoring itself out to anyone who cares. -Yes, we love four tet too-.
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on 25 January 2010
Four Tet, aka Kieran Hebden, has always posed a bit of a problem for me. He is undoubtedly a musical genius I can therefore never figure out why he isn't credited more often for the quality of his work. He has always been capable of producing phenomenally atmospheric and intelligent music. `Rounds' was and still is an utter master piece filled with original and intriguing arrangements that manage to preserve the listener's interest throughout. `Everything Ecstatic' followed up on this with yet more of the same and most recently the `Ringers EP' showcased Kieran's developing sense of rhythm.

We therefore come to 2010 and the first full length Four Tet release in five years. He has in the meantime been working with Steve Reid and undertaking monthly DJ residencies at various clubs and you can hear these influences in `There Is Love In You'. The album opens with `Angel Echoes' which is a typically atmospheric opener with what is initially a very stripped back atmosphere, the tapping rhythms lead nicely into repetitious vocals echoing the album title over and over to build intricacy. It is also accompanied by simple instrumentation which gently adds to the collection of sound in such as to almost create a dream like sweep of sound. First single `Love Cry' follows this incredibly calming introduction picking up on the gentle rhythm and building on it. This is a very obvious example of where Kieran's club residencies have influenced his music. The initial slow buzz comes to be dominated by a complex drum track that patiently develops into something worthy of taking centre stage in any decent DJ set, of course with the aid of some nice synth and repeating vocals. There will be some fantastic remixes of this track I am sure as well.

So after that nine minute wonder Kieran treats you to what is initially a very smooth slightly euphoric dream like track. It is a warm and joyous moment kind of like the constantly grinning brother to `Tubular Bells', and it acts as a kind of excited greeting as well when you hear the eleven second recording of `Pablo's Heart' on the next track. This is literally as it describes a recording of Kieran's godson's heartbeat. And the combination of the two tracks makes a very nice atmosphere as well as helping the album to flow smoothly into `Sing'. This is a fidgety track with a repeated synth hook and complex bubbling rhythms and some interesting samples thrown in for good measure. This is a good Four Tet track with nice variation part way through as the gently stomping rhythm builds and changes.

The next track is `This Unfolds' which starts with an interesting rhythm that sounds something like a toad trying to beat box. At least that's what I imagine in my head and I think it's quite funny. The drums behind are initially simple and the guitar balances well. A series of chiming and whistling samples are slowly added to the track before briefly giving way to be allow a pulsing and rattling rhythm to add itself to the mix. The ensemble then ebbs and flows to its calm conclusion carrying you along carefully for the ride before leaving you in the ring of `Reversing'. This really is just a bridge track into `Plastic People' but Kieran doesn't try to do anything dramatic in it, instead he opts for keeping the flow of the album with it and in that way the track really works.

`Plastic People' then starts with a rhythm lead by some nice resonating bells, handclaps and shaking percussion. The track then gets a lot denser quicker than others on the album but always maintains that initial pace. The higher pitched lead lines of the track fade in and out as more percussion as added creating a nice flow that oscillates its focus between the two parts of the track. Finally the album is closed out by `She Just Likes to Fight' which is a quietly thoughtful track that seems to reflect on old memories. The music then slowly seems to focus on a single idea as if focusing on a specific memory. This results in the track being pushed forward by bouncing rhythms and softly crescendoing guitars. It is a strong way to end the album.

So at the end of those 47 minutes you are left to wonder what Kieran Hebden has achieved. The answer is simple in my opinion. This is a wonderfully focused and intelligent album with some truly joyous moments as well as those that just sweep you into the world of Four Tet. It is a fantastic album that will be loved by existing fans and will likely sway a fair few more with its openness, consistency and continued originality.
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VINE VOICEon 9 February 2010
A clearing of the airwaves, a flick of the "on" button, and Keiran Hebden is formally ready to return. Although far from out of action in the four years since his previous record, `Everything Ecstatic', an arrival in the new decade seems suitable, as his sound of naturally-built electronica breeds new life and continues to develop. As heads are turning towards newly-establishing pioneers - Joy Orbison the biggest name amongst them - Four Tet is carefully reminding us all of "who's the daddy".

`There Is Love In You' isn't as gentle as its title may suggest: although closer `She Just Likes To Fight' commences with the sound of a child playing with a xylophone, before surrounding the listeners with gentle drum patterns and swift guitar melodies, it's applied at the end of the record to signify a contrast in-between itself and what precedes it. The bulk of Hebden's fifth studio album can sit pretty with a walk in an industrial city; the sound of traffic drowning out the music, as concrete slabs, intimidating buildings and miserable faces are the only visual companion. On face value, this doesn't do `There Is Love...' much justice, as it's a record capable of working both as background music and as "4am music": the kind that deserves your fullest attention, allowing you to engage yourself within the subtle twists and turns that come in excess with this record.

`Love Cry' for example, is mercilessly repetitive, as a London suburb drum beat kicks and kicks at your eardrums, it's only until the final minute-and-a-half of the allocated eight that the poignant guitar melody arrives. But on close inspection, Hebden teases the listener with it two minutes in - for a split-second you hear the same melody, drenched in reverb, ready for action. To anticipate it is to essentially spoil the heart-swelling drama of the first time it hits you, be it in complete isolation or surrounded by commuters on the underground. It is rare to hear an album so fitting for the city atmosphere. This in turn is degrading the songs as monotonous. More often than not, they are. But at the same time, they're astonishingly beautiful.

It's a difficult one to get your head around, yes. But Hebden remains perhaps the only club-setting DJ to have a mind-frame determined to provoke an appreciation of beauty in his music. From `Sing''s sweeping chop-and-change state to `Plastic People' and `Circling"s night-time atmosphere, you, as the listener, find yourself surprised every time something sonically grabs you, rinsing out the normality of a song and replacing it with something stark and stunning. In `There Is Love In You', moments like these come in plenty.
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on 2 March 2010
This record is more club-oriented than its predecessors; it namechecks Shoreditch sweatbox Plastic People. Coincidently, moments of the record remind me of former Shoreditch artist Towers of Asia and the influence of Burial is clearly evident.
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on 1 February 2010
All the way back in 2003 London born Kieran Hebden released the wondeful album 'Rounds' under his alias Four Tet. It was a remarkble record from the former member of Fridge and it paved the way for many other 'Folk-tronica' albums to be released(checkout 'Homesongs' by Adem for another example of how this music is best performed). Since then he has released the luke-warm 2005 album 'Everything Ecstatic', the decent e.p 'Ringer' in 2008 and various rewarding collabarations with jazz drummer Steve Reid and dubstep legend Burial. This is his fifth album under the name Four Tet and is mainly reliable & comfortable but with flashes of the greatness that he is certainly capable of.

The album starts with the quite frankly unremarkable 'Angel Echoes' in which over a fairly simple beat we hear a female voice repeat the name of the album over and over again, it does have a certain beauty in it's simpleness and that would be fine if the rest of the record was'nt otherwise cosy and over-familiar. Songs such as 'Circling' and 'Reversing' are equally unremarkable and seem to sit too much within Hebden's comfort zone to ever stir any emotion or make you seriously stand up and take any notice. This may be seen as heresy by some, but I don't really care all that much for the 9 minute single 'Love Cry' either, it would certainly be one of the weaker tracks off the aforementioned masterpeice 'Rounds'.

Well thats the bad bit out of the way and up to this point it may seem that I have a real dislike for the record, that is not the case. The double shot that is tracks 5 & 6 ('Sing' and 'This Unfolds' respectivly) are superb additions to hebden's catalouge. The former sounds like a club classic being played backwards with a wonderful little guitar lick in the centre and lots of weird voices appearing from out the dark. 'This Unfolds' is quite simply Four Tet at his finest with a mesmerising, droning drum beat layered with a lonely guitar and weird keyboard noises, it all combines to create a wonderful 8 minutes of dream-like music. Sadly Hebden leaves maybe the albums strongest song to last. 'She Just Likes To Fight' is music to be listened to with big headphones and to lose youself within. it comes across a little like a slow paced Mogwai track but there is so much going on underneath the main beats it's a struggle to appreciate it in your first sitting, I especially love the synths that appear with about a minute and a half remaining.

So in summary I'd say this is a reliable, comfy and sometimes inspired release from the Londoner, I just hope that he goes away and comes back in a year or two with an album to really challenge the supremecy of 'Rounds', now that would be something to cherish.
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on 22 July 2011
I bought this album on the strength of Four Tet's incredible recent work with Burial. Aside from clear stand out tracks Angel Echoes, and She Just Likes To Fight (which sounds like Explosions In The Sky - and, naturally Plastic People, following his residency at the Dubstep club, much of the album has quite a housey feel. A slight disappointment at first for anyone expecting a more ambient/dubstep inspired sound - yet still a superb album for what it is. Hopefully his next record will be truly brilliant, as his sound develops in this direction.
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on 9 February 2010
Firstly, let me state that I am a fan of Four Tet so I had this album preordered from the word go. With this in mind let me start by emphatically stating that this album will not necessarily appeal to fans of his first three releases, and is more in line with the eponymous four track EP released in 2008. You can still tell it's Four Tet, but Hebden has all but traded in the seductive ambience of his earlier work. As with the EP, every track here is underpinned by an overbearing four-to-the-floor kick, with mere hints at his earlier subtlety.

There are standout tracks, notably the closing track, 'She Just Likes to Fight', but most of what is on offer here does not rank with the majority of 'Pause' or 'Rounds', and much of it sounds like leftovers from Orbital's Brown album. Once you accept this and take the time to listen what is going on beyond the thumping kick drum, there is much to be appreciated here. Sadly though, it doesn't really feel like Hebden has progressed as a musician in the past eleven years. If anything, this album feels more like the work of someone who is content to take advantage of his fans.
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