Known for creating groundbreaking electronic music and maintaining an elusive persona, Aphex Twin—aka Richard D. James— has a knack for popping up when you least expect him. True to form, Christmas Day, the UK-based producer shared the new track “tnodvood104” from his mysterious user18081971 Soundcloud account on Christmas day.
From the very start of the track, “tnodvood104” revolves around an unhinged drum machine sequence and a patient but prominent bass drum kick. James slowly builds upon the prickly beat with clanky chimes, followed by a group of voices that sing hauntingly and disjointedly. The song then reverts back into a mechanical percussion wonderland, finishing out with the subtly modulating drum loop that carries the entire track.
On December 17, Aphex Twin made a rare live appearance at the Day for Night festival in Houston, while also dropping a surprise show exclusive 12-inch along the way. The mystifying producer has been sprinkling tracks onto his Soundcloud account here and there, and also released the Cheeta EP back in June. Prior to that, in 2014, James released Syro, the first studio album under the Aphex Twin moniker since 2001.
Praised as a techno pioneer since the early 90s, James has a consistent track record of releasing innovative electronic tunes that were always deemed ahead of their time. You can catch Aphex Twin live at a number of upcoming summer festivals in Europe, including Primavera Sound (in both Barcelona and Portugal), Field Day 2017, and Flow Festival.