Alva Noto: Unitxt (CD, Raster-Noton, June 2008)

When this came out, it seemed like the king of glitch was reclaiming his crown. I forget why I didn’t buy it right away: I do remember that it became hard to find quite soon. So I came to it over two years late… I am glad to say that it appears to have aged extremely well: I certainly haven’t heard anyone do this better before or since. I have argued that the defining feature of Raster-Noton is the pristine production, and this is a great example: every click, whirr, and bleep is precisely located and crisply rendered. It feels like I am eavesdropping on some hugely intricate alien production line. Hugely enjoyable stuff: All Hail Carsten Nicolai.

(I have written about the first 10 tracks, which feel like the proper album. Following a silent intermission, the rest of the album, called Unitxt Code (Data To AIFF) consists of data files — spreadsheets and the like — reinterpreted as audio files. I guess it’s the modern equivalent of the ’90s IDM types who would sample the sound of ZX Spectrum programs loading. These tracks seem like little more than curiosities to me, and I rarely listen to them.)

I bought this from Boomkat. They call it Clicks / Glitch.

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