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Squarepusher - Do You Know Squarepusher

  by Mark Rowland

published: 9 / 10 / 2002

Squarepusher - Do You Know Squarepusher
Label: Warp Records
Format: CD X2


Impressive and typically eclectic new double album, which features both a mini studio CD and also a live album, from electro-dance pioneer, the highly regarded Squarepusher

On a casual listen to Squarepusher, all you are likely to notice is thesimilarities to Aphex Twin. Of course, the same arrhythmic drum patterns and hyperactive basslines are present in both artist's work, but there are some major differences between the styles of Tom 'Squarepusher' Jenkinson and Richard 'Aphex' James. Firstly, Jenkinson takes more of a direct drum 'n' bass influence than Aphex Twin, using less ambient sounds and taking a slightly more accessible direction. The most major thing that sets Jenkinson and his good mate Richard James apart is Squarepusher's shoplifting of current dance charts. For example, his 2001 album 'Go Plastic' featured the single 'My Red Hot Car', which made use of UK Garage styles within the Braindance format. It's his ability to take a commercial sound and pervert it into something altogether more odd that's been getting him a lot of attention in the press recently. He creates musical anomalies- Braindance you can hum along to. Jenkinson's latest mini/live album 'Do you know Squarepusher?' is no exception to this. On the first CD (the seven track mini album), the recent resurgence in vocal Drum 'n' Bass is a big influence on opening track 'Do You know Squarepusher', which features a melodic vocal over a pretty straight-forward Drum 'n' Bass bassline and bleepy accompanying melody, plus, of course, the customary clattering drums. Elsewhere, the spoken-word indie Garage style of the Streets is warped and twisted into something good. One of the most immediate tracks, 'Anstromm-feck 4', fuses a Game-boy bassline with an urgent more standardly rhythmed drum pattern, giving it a slightly wierd yet almost commercial sound. Most daring of all is the closing track, a surprisingly straight cover of 'Love Will Tear Us Apart' by Joy Division, with gentle, jazzy drumming and breathy vocals. The live CD, 'Alive in Japan', was recorded in July 2001 and acts as a good summarisation of Squarepusher's sound, spanning everything from straight ahead Drum 'n' Bass, to psychotic Junglist madness, to pure binary noise, plus everywhere in between, with highlights including live versions of 'My Red Hot Car', 'Do You Know Squarepusher' and 'Anstromm-feck 4', which sounds fantasticly chaotic live. While this is not quite as focused or concise a listen as the first CD, there's still plenty of pleasure to be found within it's extended walls of noise.

Track Listing:-
1 Do You Know Squarepusher
2 F-Train
3 Kill Robok
4 Anstromm-Feck 4
5 Conc 2 Symmetriac
6 Mutilation Colony
7 Love Will Tear Us Apart
8 Mutilation Colony (Excerpt)
9 The Exploding Psychology
10 My Red Hot Car
11 Do You Know Squarepusher
12 Direct To Mental
13 Boneville Occident
14 Go! Spastic
15 Greenways Trajectory
16 My Fucking Sound
17 Anstromm-Feck 4

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Selection 16 (2001)
Based on the number of releases he's had in the last year, Tom Jenkinson (aka 'Squarepusher') must be an insomniac. Either that or he is actually able to work at the same frenetic pace that most of h

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