1D Electronics 2012 - 2014 is the first solo release of Lloyd Cole’s electronic dabblings. We’ve heard plenty from him in pop mode, and some of his electronics alongside Hans-Joachim Roedelius, but this is the first record of this kind. Each piece is studiously sequenced, moving through subtle modulations as they flourish. On Bureau B.
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Confusingly this is the same Lloyd Cole that bookish young people swooned over in the mid 1980s. Cole (a close runner up in this week's unofficial 'Worlds Most Dapper Man' competition to Robert Forster), is best known for his witty, literate 1980s pop, but over recent years he has combined an almost pathological interest in golf, with forays in the world of bleepy electronica culminating in a collaboration with Hans-Joachim Roedelius. Here is a collection of his electronic experiments in the years 2012-2014.
What is interesting is that Cole only used modulations (from a synthesizer he built himself) and programmed sequencers to create his bleepy world. The opening two tracks are like a lo-fi early Autechre with sounds pinging in a sort of semi random manner. The track which has really pricked my ears is 'Ken O' which has warm synth tones underpinning the circuitry and the first use of beats on the album. The music is primitive but affecting. Many tracks are really simple with just pure synth tone -- 'One Voice' in particular is like the early electronic music of the BBC Radiophonic Orchestra and various offshoots. Cole's obvious love of early electronics and the work of Brian Eno and pals shines through.
Some of the pieces here are sun dappling lovely and it's a delight to see a man 'famous' for one type of music dabbling in another form which bears absolutely no resemblance to his previous life so successfully. All fans of primitive electronics should take a listen.
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- 1D Electronics 2012-2014 by Lloyd Cole
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