Published Aug 19, 2015AFX is probably the second most well known of Richard D. James' numerous monikers, and arguably one of his best. It was responsible for the superb Analogue Bubblebath series from the early '90s and the equally superb — albeit decidedly more haunting — 42-track Analord collection from 2005. Orphaned Deejay Selek (2006-2008) is the first we've seen of the AFX pseudonym since then, and if the title is anything to go by, we can assume this newest EP is a selection of unreleased tracks recorded between '06 and '08. The ever-prolific James seemingly can't stop recording, and his up-until-Syro silence clearly left a huge backlog of material collecting dust, which we're only now beginning to hear.
The wait, it seems, was totally worth it. This latest splash in the steady stream of releases from the Cornish producer is an acid-fuelled luge ride that's equal parts vibrant and ominous. Tracks like "serge fenix Rendered 2" and "simple slamming b 2" (the titles are catchy and topical as always) play like backing music to some demonic machine's final chase scene. "NEOTEKT72" and the excellent "oberheim blacet1b," on the other hand, are a touch more poignant, but by no means tender.
Orphaned Deejay is the complete opposite of a concept record — an anti-concept record, if you will. There's nothing really linking these songs together, nor is there anything to suggest they're more AFX than any of James' other aliases. The entire EP, in fact, could easily have been plucked from a box of tapes marked "sfisufupantsojojj???????" on his '06-'08 shelf. The tracks are of such quality, though, that their position as part of something larger is mostly irrelevant. Their sheer calibre makes you wonder how much of this stuff is lying around, or, more importantly, when the next load is coming. (Warp)