It is hard to say how I got into Four Tet. I used to have this thing where I would go into a local record store and grab a random CD that appealed to me. Low and behold, combined with a record label that I knew had a history of artists that matched my tasted, I acquired my first Four Tet LP—“Everything Ecstatic”, in 2005. To be honest, it was a little above my 22 year-old brain. Yet it intrigued me. Hebden has a way of doing that. It is as if one has to put his or her ear a little bit closer to the speaker and demand silence in order to hear all the intricate details of a track.
On January 26, 2010 Four Tet released their first full-length in four years—and it was well worth the wait. For Four Tet, this album is pretty simplistic and easy to get into. In fact, some fans might say that it is too focused. And fortunately/unfortunately, it isn’t the “folkatronica” that we have seen in earlier albums. But there is a great beauty in this album. There is Love in You starts with a bang…no not literally. In fact, it starts out incredibly simple and soft. “Angel Echoes” sounds strangely live with only cymbals being hit on every beat. That is, live until a voice comes in that sounds like it’s skipping—softly and gradually getting louder, grabbing your attention. Skipping in a perfect manner as the voice starts harmonizing with itself. It doesn’t matter that there aren’t any words, this voice is an instrument, the music itself the message. You wish that the song was longer; ending right before you could wrap your head around it. “Love Cry” starts out with static—you know, the sound when there are fuzzies on the television. Right before you start getting annoyed with the sound, suddenly, a nice, salsa-like beat enters the track, causing you to swing your hips back and forth. Then these incomprehensible sounds come in and out—the sounds of..for lack of better words..teachnology. Two-thirds into the track a singer enters, singing the words “love cry” repetitively as the original samples come in. I can’t put into words the intricate details of this track. Everything is woven into each other, timed out perfectly. Don’t forget about the track, “Sing.” Mmmm. It is good. I mean, really good. Again, the timing of each sample is perfect—each piece adding to the previous. It’s (almost) 7 minutes of Heaven. I mean, even the incoherent lyrics of a (most likely) female voice get me hot and heavy. I can’t begin to imagine how long it took to create this track let alone the entire album.
Although this isn’t necessarily a good example of the Four Tet that we know and love, this album is ridiculously wonderful. Furthermore, it is great music to do homework to. This album pairs the sounds of instruments and digital sounds superbly and is a true piece of art. I truly believe that you won’t be let down if you give this album a listen.
RIYL: Aphex Twin, Caribou, Animal Collective, Mum
Start With: 1, 2, 3, 5, 9