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on 27 September 2009
its a real shame when a former musical pioneer - in this case Tom Jenkinson aka squarepusher who had since the mid-90's been releasing consistently enthralling lp's of next-level intricate and also head-fck electronica , eventually gives way to this level of retro-muso fusion. track 4 - titled : "a real woman" (of all things) actually made me laugh out loud when i first heard it. i thought Tom J was being ironic in presenting us with such a bad homage to the worst 70's fusion jazz but NO -it appears to be his genuine attmept at such things. oh dear...

as i said i still revere Tom J's earlier work but i think he could be a lost cause now. if you MUST listen to jazz-fusion ( and most of it is shockingly self-indulgent) then at least go the best practioners : Miles Davis (from 1968 onwards), Herbie Hancock's Sextant etc (1972), Return to Forever (with Stanley Clarke on bass amongst others from 1975) or even Yes ("Relayer" 1975 also). at least they were of their time.... sorry, Tom.

for the real deal on Squarepusher - where great bass playing meets ultra complex groundbreaking beats - go to "big loada" instead or the later "go plastic" .
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on 20 March 2010
This is not simply another Squarepusher album, even after the accessibility and sci-fi kitsch of Hello Everything, I was taken aback by how zany this album sounds; it's like Pusher's Sgt. Pepper's. It's also the album that's most focused on live instruments since Music is Rotted One Note and provides a great alternative to Rotted One Note for people wanting to hear Jenkinson's virtuoso playing but who haven't been able to get to grips with that album (for which I don't blame them, although it is a masterpiece after some perseverance).

For Squarepusher as a producer I'd say this could be his best, the merging of live and electronic sounds is more seamless and ingeniously put to use than ever before, for the best example listen to Potential Govaner; perhaps the most brilliantly crafted track on the album, even if it verges on flashy you'd have to be a cold person not to enjoy it.

The downside of this album though is that among the high points there are too many ambling interludes of Tod Dockstader influenced psychedelic classical guitar, which are interesting initially but really don't hold up and other unfortunate lows like the strangely grating new wave/cyber jazz song A Real Woman.

The album's biggest differentiator is the presence of rock music, okay, Do You Know had a Joy Division cover and Visitor had Steinbolt's digital metal but Pusher's never explored rock as much or in as pure a form as on this album. The results are fantastic; Delta V is great for its fuzzing, pounding rhythms and its mechanical sounding breakdown that holds host to a seriously good beat and undeniably satisfying bass fills. Then Planet Gear is a blissfully bombastic piece of space age rock with a grin inducingly uplifting refrain, I'd say it's among his best tunes.
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on 10 November 2008
It would be (and is) a huge mistake to state that this album is "just another squarepusher album". I can't really imagine a less appropriate description. It would be infinitely more appropriate to describe it as a timely evolution and consolidation of his own sound. I can't think of an album which TJ has released which actually resonates the Squarepusher sound more prolifically. This, I think, is a very good thing.

I have been a fan of SP since Feed Me Weird Things and I can see the transmutation which has occurred. This guy IS talented and IS destined for bigger (but not necessarily better) things. It's weird that the first guy to review this album would mention the mercury music awards and such things... I don't know why that this is in any way important. The fact is that this album takes all previous SP albums and builds upon them with aplomb and does not need corporate endorsement at all.

If you own any (or all) SP albums then this is an album you should buy as a matter of course, regardless of any ill informed cynics. It's a genuine addition to his musical genesis and not an exercise in banality which has been suggested elsewhere.

Buy and be happy.
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VINE VOICEon 21 September 2008
Yes he's a talented guy.

Yes it's all real instruments AND he plays them all himself. But therein lies a bit of a problem. The "solo project" problem - common to a lot of electronic artists. With nobody to temper Tom Jenkinson's great ideas it all sounds a bit disconnected (to me).

As Squarepusher LPs go this one is, on first play at least, one of the more accessible (see previous Amazon reviews vis-a-vis "increasing tendancy towards jazz-funk") - I would even go as far as to say it would be refreshing to see this get a nomination for the 2009 Mercury Music Prize. But on subsequent plays it leaves me a bit cold. The lyric "I am a member of society" can only raise a smile so many times (although it DID raise a smile - nice one TJ).

Not up there with his best (which for me would either be Go Plastic or Do You Know Squarepusher).
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on 3 October 2012
Frantic, charged, jazzy in places, & a lot of fun. Plus some great use of the classic Space Echo! I thoroughly enjoy this album every time I listen to it.
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on 25 November 2008
It's a shame that artists can lose their flair - maybe not forever. This is a major disappointment - can't tell the difference between tunes on this one. Hello Everything was a let-down. Ultravisitor a lot better. I'm not an album person. Rate each tune individually in iTunes and you'll see they get better backward chronologically. Big Loada & Hard Normal Daddy are the best. I'm waiting for the next best new...
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on 9 December 2008
This sounds not dissimilar to a Weather Report cover band staffed by members of Daft Punk, Level 42 and Chrome. And I mean that in a good way. If you are a fan of music - you will like this.
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on 24 November 2009
Where are you squarepusher????? Its time to come back and release something worth buying.
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