IF YOU MUST OWN ONE AUTECHRE RECORD, THIS IS IT. The band's debut album was curated as the seventh entry in Warp's influential Artificial Intelligence series alongside albums by Richard D. James, Speedy J, B12, The Black Dog and two eponymous compilations. The series was Warp's grandiose attempt to re-contextualize "techno" as intelligent, chin-stroking music for armchairs, and Amber was a chance for Rob Brown & Sean Booth to truly make a statement free of the A.I. manifesto's constraints. The resulting album is much warmer than Incunabula (just look at the sleeve FFS). The sinister atmosphere of "Foil" and "Silverside" foreshadow their later work while "Nine" & "Yulquen" are both warm and beatless in a way that is virtually absent from subsequent albums. "Slip" and "Glitch" are a perfect one-two punch of teched-out, ass-shaking bubblers that make strong candidates for the best two tracks in Autechre's vast catalog. Amber is a perfect point of entry for anyone new to the band overwhelmed by their huge discography. Who knows when (or if) this will ever be repressed, so grip your copy before everyone in the office takes them all for our future grandchildren. Recommended.
- double vinyl repress
- gatefold sleeve
- includes digital download for Amber & bonus live set AE_LIVE_GRAFENHAINICHEN_170715
- music label: Warp Records 2016
reviewed by peanut dust 01/2017
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