It is a truth universally acknowledged, as Jane Austen never said, that Apex Twin’s Selected Ambient Works Volume 2 isn’t a patch on Volume 1. It’s difficult admittedly to gauge what Jane Austen might have made of Aphex Twin- he is entirely outside her cultural frames of reference and doesn’t wear breeches. However it is also a truth that every Aphex Twin album contains at least one moment of genius (and I don’t chuck the word genius around very often). The moment of beauty genius on Selected Ambient Works 2 is this…

Untitled 20 (Lichen)

As an album Selected Ambient Works 2 seems to take delight in being even more obtuse than usual. The songs, twenty four of them on the cd edition and one more on the vinyl, are all called Untitled except for track thirteen, Blue Calx. Each track had a corresponding image. Track 20’s corresponding image is Lichen. The gently ascending synth chords, slightly wobbling at the edge of distortion, the ever so slighty downbeat turn at just after two minutes, the return of the ascending chords with some crackle, to the fade out are all fucking magical.