Aphex Twin
Drukqs


2.0
poor

Review

by ocelot-05 USER (20 Reviews)
January 16th, 2006 | 87 replies


Release Date: 2001 | Tracklist


ca•coph•o•ny

1. Jarring, discordant sound; dissonance: heard a cacophony of horns during the traffic jam.

2. The use of harsh or discordant sounds in literary composition, as for poetic effect.
This word, above all others, describes Drukqs.

Anyone remotely familiar with Aphex Twin’s work will know that his primary musical niche is blending soft, child-like melodies with fast, complex drum’ n bass or break beats. With Drukqs, Richard D. James’4th album, he focuses on only one of these angles. That is, Drukqs is an almost full-on acid/drum n’ bass album, with less peaceful breaks. His ability to make warm, beautiful melodies and atmospheres from seemingly lifeless sounds cannot be seen on Drukqs.

Some particular songs that exemplify Aphex Twin’s unique style are 4 and Wet Tip Hen Ax, both of which appear on previous albums. They are simultaneously joyful and unnerving, and evoke strong emotional responses from a great many people. This is something I can’t really say of anything featured on Drukqs. It doesn’t have those intense moments that suddenly break down into nice, soft sections. Vordhosbn, track 2 on the first disc, is a possible exception. It hints at his earlier work, but does even come close to anything he has done before. Vordhosbn is quite pretty I suppose, but nothing spectacular. A song similar in composition to Vordhosbn is Cock/Ver 10, but cacophony is unfortunately the adjective that always comes to mind. The craziest song on Drukqs is Mt. Saint Michael, because of its energy. It begins with an eerie 5/4 section, and for the next eight minutes is staggeringly fast non-stop acid. At one point in the song there is a speaker-to-speaker tremolo effect that is physically painful to listen to.

With songs like Cock/Ver 10 and Mt. Saint Michael, I imagine Aphex Twin is touching base with his harder side, but it just doesn’t work. In addition to the fast tracks, there is also an assortment of very bizarre instrumental ones. I say instrumental, because they seemed to be played on some kind of real instrument, instead of synthesizers. The unknown instrument makes very strange sounds. Imagine a piano based on a typewriter or clockwork system, or look at the album cover. It is quite a novelty, but not exactly something I want to listen to. Some of the percussion sounds like old toys or something. These songs are very strange, but they don’t captivate me either. The best one is the very first song, Jynwythek Ylow (try and find an anagram in that). It is very warm and happy, but then again this is almost a no-brainer for Aphex Twin fans. Another nice song is Kesson Daslef, which is one of several entirely piano tracks. Others like Father wander around various chords, but Kesson Daslef shows James’ exceptional skills as a pianist. It is a short song in a minor key. I find it genuinely beautiful, and I sometimes listen to it repeatedly because of its length.

Vordhosbn, Jynwythek Ylow, and Kesson Daslef demonstrate the three sides of Drukqs: The acid, the instrumentals, and the piano songs. Unfortunately, they are mere exceptions among countless mediocre or poor songs. Because of the complexities found on the fast tracks, I still have faith in Richard D. James. It’s obvious on Drukqs that he is an amazing musician. However, based on the numerous mundane songs, I do feel that Aphex Twin has taken as step down in terms of creativity. I have no emotional connection whatsoever with Drukqs; I find it sterile as a whole. I do not recommend it at all.



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user ratings (540)
Chart.
3.8
excellent
other reviews of this album
Jonny Hunter CONTRIBUTOR (4.5)
Ah, that's the stuff....


Comments:Add a Comment 
DFelon204409
Emeritus
January 16th 2006


3995 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Drukqs are good. They make you do things you don't think that you should. And when you do them people think that you're cool. And when you do them people think you are cool.

ocelot-05
January 16th 2006


807 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

I wouldn't know anything about that. *shifty eyes*
Seriously though, Drugs are dumb. They should be a dumb freedom, though.

Zebra
Moderator
January 16th 2006


2647 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

I'd give this a 3.
It takes some time to grow on you and get used to, but their are some excellent tracks, most of them are on the first disc.
Nice review, you did a good job at describing the album which I wouldn't be able to do.

DFelon204409
Emeritus
January 16th 2006


3995 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Actually I was just quoting NOFX.

ocelot-05
January 16th 2006


807 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

Oh, okay DFelon. I was a little puzzled.
You bastards are messing up my user rating! You two are just a select few who like the album, while most people don't. I gave it a 2 for a reason, and now the rating is 3.3. Die!

Zebra
Moderator
January 16th 2006


2647 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Nah, I know plenty of people who would give this album a 5/5. I didn't like this album at first, but it grows on you everytime you listen to it, try giving it some more listens and it may grow on you., Then again I can see why you gave this a 2/5.

ocelot-05
January 17th 2006


807 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

Maybe you're right. While we can all agree that Drukqs isn't as melodic, whether or not it's an enjoyable listen is up for debate.

Two-Headed Boy
January 17th 2006


4527 Comments


you sir... are god. This Message Edited On 07.16.07

ocelot-05
January 17th 2006


807 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

You sir, and blaspheming, whoever you're talking to. Med, Damrod, and Jom are the Gods (may they forgive you).

I never said drugs are good anyway, I just said they should be a liberty. What you do to your own body, as long as is has no negative effect on others, is your own complete freedom. The government has no right to dictate what you do to your own person, in my opinion. A lot of Americans say that it is a free country, but I think that we cannot truly live in a free society until drugs are legalized for personal use, especially marijuana.This Message Edited On 01.17.06

AfroMan
January 18th 2006


101 Comments


Id have to disagree with this review.
In my opinion this is one of his finest pieces of work.
It takes the beautiful aspects and dark aspects of his previous albums and takes them to the next level.
When I listen to Drukqs at some points Im in awe of its beauty and in others I shit my pants in equal measures.
The first disk is gold, the second is a bonus
Highly recommended
4/5

ocelot-05
January 18th 2006


807 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

AfroMan, that was a very well-said comment. I can totally see why you rate it so highly, and I'm glad some people like the album more than I do.

DFelon204409
Emeritus
January 18th 2006


3995 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

[quote=revolver ocelot]I never said drugs are good anyway, I just said they should be a liberty. What you do to your own body, as long as is has no negative effect on others, is your own complete freedom. The government has no right to dictate what you do to your own person, in my opinion. A lot of Americans say that it is a free country, but I think that we cannot truly live in a free society until drugs are legalized for personal use, especially marijuana.
[/quote]
The problem is to get drugs you have to purchase them through a dealer, some of whom commit crimes that aren't just dealing to get the drugs in the first place. Also, imagine how much you indirectly support indentured servitude and cocaine plantations in South American countries if you buy coke, even if you think you're only affecting yourself. Last, people are often irresponsible when under the influence, and could put others in danger.

ocelot-05
January 22nd 2006


807 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

All the more reason to make them legal. The drug industry is only affiliated with violent criminals because drugs are themselves illegal, and therefore attract those with a general disregard for the law. If there were marijuana shops in America, no different from liquor stores, I can hardly imagine shopkeepers taking out hits on rival owners. The virtual slavery of workers in South American plantations is a product of those who oppress them, and should not be in the hands of those who use the drugs.
Also, those who use drugs should limit their usage so that they won't harm any others. If they are excessive, that is their own responsibility. That is not to say that most drugs are likely to make you harm others in the first place. Most are depressants; the most provocative drug is alcohol, which is obviously legal. I also have trouble imagining stoned idiots starting fights. In concurence with America's drug laws, alcohol and tobacco should be illegal as well. But the tobacco industry is a whole 'nuther story...

dvs
January 28th 2006


28 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

i was going to review this but was planning on giving it 5stars...

ocelot-05
January 28th 2006


807 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

dvs, you obviously have a completely different opinion from mine, so you should defnitely still review it to bring more diversity to the site. That's what sputnik's all about, chap.

NEDM
March 1st 2006


1113 Comments


Drugs are neat, and you can buy 'em relatively cheap. And when you do 'em people think that you're cool.
Sorry, I just couldn't help it.


DFelon204409
Emeritus
March 1st 2006


3995 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I accidently left "Mount Saint Michael's Mix" on repeat overnight and the rats that probably live in my room went insane.

NEDM
March 1st 2006


1113 Comments


That's really funny. I usually listen to the faster songs on here when I play racing video games.

Killtacular
March 1st 2006


1314 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

I've heard a select few of the tracks on here (if you'd like to know which ones, read allmusic.com's review of it), and they were pretty good. The only problem is that it's a double album, so there's bound to be plenty of filler. I think I just got the cream of the crop, is all.

Zebra
Moderator
March 1st 2006


2647 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

There are frequent filler tracks, mostly in the second track. However the albums key tracks make up for it.



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