Over a decade after its inception, Autechre remained at the forefront of electronica. While the English duo's early work (1995's AMBER, for example) boasted a warmer, more organic variation on the forward-thinking work of genre-mates like Aphex Twin and Squarepusher, the landmark double-disc TRI REPETAE++ found them exploring colder digital vistas with otherworldly, almost machine-like textures. UNTILTED (2005) bears many of the sonic hallmarks of that album (namely the highly processed, digitized quality of the sound), but there is something new here as well.
UNTILTED is more up-tempo than much of Autechre's previous work. There is an escalation of BPMs (beats per minute) that at times seems to approximate house or drum-and-bass, as on "Ipacial Section" and "Augmatic Disport." Yet the best way to listen to Autechre is still on a pair of high-end headphones, not on the dance floor. The compositions skitter and skim along, but with a subdued, ambient air, driven more by glitchy textures and the push-pull dynamics of space and density than by clear-cut beats. Sophisticated, meticulous, and often mesmerizing, UNTILTED maintains the qualities of the duo's best work.
Uncut (p.106) - 4 stars out of 5 - "Autechre's music refuses to relax, ensuring them a longer radioactive half-life."
The Wire (p.53) - "[A]ttend closely and tracks like opener 'LCC' reveal through their insistence and integrity their shape and warmth."
Mojo (Publisher) (p.106) - 4 stars out of 5 - "[With] great globules of synthetic sound filtered and processed into a litany of strange-yet-compelling landscapes."