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  • Exai
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Customer reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
15
4.5 out of 5 stars
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on 7 April 2016
This is one of their best albums to date, which I previously didn't think was possible to do.
After a period of experimentation and albums which could seem dodgy or needed years of getting used to, it is clear on this album that Oversteps and Move of Ten were "practice" and this is the final push. Perfection.
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on 20 September 2017
Naughties r n' b influenced rhythms.... Seems slightly dated unfortunately in this respect.

Good synth sounds throughout, and for sheer efforts a 3 star rating. I thank you.

EM.
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on 30 June 2015
Oh God, is this brilliant? If you've got a very good hi fi then treat yourself to the vinyl. Any mortal nurtured in electronic (or any other) music has to have this in his/hers top drawer! Demanding? Absolutely, Rewarding? Life enhancing. Yep, it's just some more music, but you'll be a bigger, more enlightend being for spending time unraveling this box of black magic. ESSENTIAL!!!!
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on 26 March 2014
this album is a masterpiece, give it a listen and let it grow on you, such a clever pair of lads!
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on 5 March 2013
Ferocious and alchemical, Autechre haven't sounded this wholly invigorated and fresh for many years. At two hours plus long it's something of a curate's egg and you'd need to be slightly unhinged to attempt it all in one sitting. Maybe this is Booth & Brown's stab at their own 'Drukqs'?

As ever they use angular electronic palettes and timbres quite unlike anyone else - there's no mistaking who is making these complex, crunching, swarming soundscapes even when they tip a cursory hat to such (relatively) new kids on the block as dubstep's wobbly bass. It's as impossible to single out tracks as it is to distinguish where one ends and the next begins, when more often than not there are more ideas in one track than a whole album from a contemporary.
The album comprises of both the latter-day abstract swarms of skittering nano-bots as well as shadows of the b-boys from outer space encountered on Lego Feet, Incunabula and Gescom.

Overall this is dense, challenging, labyrinthine music quite unlike anyone else. I'll be trying to unravel its occult mysteries for the foreseeable...
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on 13 October 2016
Item arrived, all ok
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on 6 March 2013
A large improvement over the rather disappointing Oversteps release
Nice to see the boys back on form. Great sound design over superb use of Rhythm
Their best work since Draft7.30
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on 16 March 2013
I'm not a massive electronica fan but I've spent the last 12 months 'giving it a go', only to be disappointed most of the time. However Autechre's music draws me in, I'm absolutely amazed at the sounds they create. When someone plays a tune on a guitar, I get it. I understand the concept and how that works but how the hell do Autechre create their music and how do you describe it? Exai is a 2 disc, 2 hour journey to another musical solar system. Layer upon layer of multiple sounds reward the careful listener....eventually. This is my 6th Autechre album, some are easier on the ear than others. If you are new to their music I think Exia is a good place to start. Others may suggest starting with 'Ambre', a great album but doesn't prepare the listener for future exploration of their excellent music imo.
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on 6 March 2013
This latest release from the dynamic duo points more towards their Quaristice sound but feels a lot more developed, a whopping 2hrs 32secs of mind bending digital manipulation and intense arrangements will keep any fan or electronic experimental affectionado more than engaged for a while. Although it holds no big surprises Exai is a natural evolution of Autechre's sound and proves yet again that the lads are still on top of their game.
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on 6 September 2015
Autechre are a strange duo. No, really. Hear me out. They started off writing some glistening, electro-influenced electronica, back when it didn't make you feel dirty to refer to the Warp catalogue as IDM. Their first two albums "Incunabula" and "Amber" are perfectly formed slices of head-music with a dance-floor sensibility, if not a dance-floor suitability.

Then they slowly and deliberately - ahem - warped themselves into a harder-edged pairing, increasingly less interested in pleasing their listener, and far more interested in alienating themselves with clanging metallic loops, off-kilter rhythms, and less melody than the average building site. Their's were a furrowed brow, intent on not doing what anyone else was doing, releasing seriously damaged sounding noise-scapes that somehow still managed to gain a fan base of equal intensity despite not really being - well, particularly listeneable.

I like the stuff they do, but do I miss the simple choons and melodies of the early days. I make no apology for the fact that every time I purchase a new Autechre album I'm hoping to hear something akin to the sweetness and oddity of the Amber days. They nearly did so with the lovely Oversteps, the album released prior to Exai. So that was okay then.

Exai then. Exai is - well it's noise. Clanging, whirbling, slonging, jiggling, improvisatory sounding noise that somehow all manages to seem relatively coherent, even manages to make sense of a kind, at least in context. What that context is, I'm still trying to understand. I've no doubt I'll be told at some point when I bring this up that, it's just who Autechre are - you're either on board or you're not.

But I've been on board since the beginning and I kind of what something from them that I just don't think they're capable of giving anymore : a s***.

Here's the thing - it's a double cd set of this noise. It makes NO attempts to pander to it's audience. It's oppressively odd. It just works away, whether you're listening to it or not, whether you understand it or not, whether you care or not. It just "is." And that's fine but problematic because at some point when I personally listen to music, I want to feel engaged. And this isn't interested in engaging you. Yes, it's a puzzle, but it's too much of a puzzle and at the end of the day it's exhausting trying to solve it which begs the question - why bother.

Which is why it's the least listened of all Autechre's cds in my collection. I just don't care about it, and it doesn't seem to care about me. I have realised I'm only buying these albums out of fan loyalty. It's the Autechre album that has made me decide not to purchase any more.

I just don't think it's worth it, and if I'm being honest, all hyperbole and hype aside about this album, the music just isn't interesting enough to listen to more than once.

A disappointment, but probably only a personal one.
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