Squarepusher: Do You Know Squarepusher

Warp, 2002

Do You Know Squarepusher cover

I believe I know Squarepusher. His jazz-influenced drum and bass tracks are ace, while his more abstract fusion tracks are challenging listens. This particular release consists of a mini-album and a live performance recorded “in Japan.” The former starts with the catchy title track, a version of which appeared on a one-sided 12" last year. It is fast and frantic with simplistic electro vocals. “F-Train” is more subdued, with manipulated vocals and underwater beats. “Kill Robok” is more to my liking (and also more difficult to describe). As for “Love Will Tear Us Apart,” it’s a well-meaning failure.

This album’s not bad overall, but neither does it stand out. It’s almost as though Jenkinson’s running low on instrumental ideas and is relying more on simple tunes and messed up vocals (a la Aphex’s “Come to Daddy”). And the live CD is a definite disappointment, with performances that sound just like their studio-recorded counterparts, the only addition being grating squeals, Jenkinson’s screaming, and lots of crowd noise. Whatever happened to Squarepusher’s electric bass-playing days?

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