This selection in the Sine
Fiction series really interested me. I am an Isaac Asimov
fan, and the lengthy (and still growing) Foundation series i
think stands as a permanent classic in Sci-Fi literature. What
sort of music would accompany this work? Something pompous,
bold, visionary, and complex.
What this is, instead, is 23 minutes of noise. This is agressively
avante electronica. It makes Autechre
look tame. It pushes boundaries and moves forward with no regard
for such archaic notions as "melody" and "harmony".
In all honesty, i hate this. It comes across as unfocused software
twiddling. Sure, some of the sounds are kind of neat, but they
go on for too long, and ultimately go nowhere.
There is a real similarity between the music of Julie Rousse
and Autechre. Both are wildly
experimental and often grating. The difference that i see is
are experimenting to see what can be done. They come up with
genuinely new things, and there is a playfulness to their work.
Foundation, on the other hand, comes across as
the artist trying to pull a scam: Rousse wants to see what she
can get away with, how far she can push her listeners before
they turn it off in disgust. For all the wierdness here, nothing
seems to have a future. There is no goal to this experiment,
whereas Autechre's work
seems as if it might lead to new and interesting sounds at some
I dunno, maybe i am full of it and this really is as experimental
(in a good sense) as Autechre.
All i know is this: Foundation really annoys me
as a whole.
That said, there is one part of the piece that is actually
interesting. The second track, Premier Voyage combines
clanging asian style percussion with strange computer sounds.
It really works as a whole, perhaps because the percussion provides
a bit more focus to the song than is present in the rest of
Overall, i cannot recommend this one, except perhaps to the
hardiest of listeners. So, if you think Autechre
needs to stop being lazy and be wierder, if you can actually
listen to a Merzbow release without feeling that the artist
is laughing at you for buying that crap, then this is for you.
I wonder what old Isaac Asimov would have thought? My guess
is he wouldn't have liked it, but then again i think he was
a real classical music fan.