Lifeforms

( 2 )

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Ned Raggett
Having indulged in more explicitly ambient realms with the Amorphous Androgynous side project, FSOL returned to full action with Lifeforms, a double-disc effort that ranks as one of the best experimental techno releases of the '90s. If not as immediately memorable on a song per song basis as, say, Aphex Twin's Selected Ambient Works collections, as an overall piece, Lifeforms makes for an inventive, fascinating aural experience, as rich and detailed as the Orb's best work. Where FSOL differs from that band in particular is the comparative lack of overt humor and less immediate desire to make people groove -- this is something to listen to rather than necessarily dance to. ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Ned Raggett
Having indulged in more explicitly ambient realms with the Amorphous Androgynous side project, FSOL returned to full action with Lifeforms, a double-disc effort that ranks as one of the best experimental techno releases of the '90s. If not as immediately memorable on a song per song basis as, say, Aphex Twin's Selected Ambient Works collections, as an overall piece, Lifeforms makes for an inventive, fascinating aural experience, as rich and detailed as the Orb's best work. Where FSOL differs from that band in particular is the comparative lack of overt humor and less immediate desire to make people groove -- this is something to listen to rather than necessarily dance to. In comparison to Accelerator, this is an extremely subtle listen, with rhythms generally buried in the mix, serving the melodies rather than vice versa. In comparison to the upfront breaks and steady house beats just two years previous, here they're stuttered, echoed, often approaching dub in pace and impact. Meanwhile, the space-alien bubbles and noises and haunting tones take to the fore, making for a disorienting, evocative experience, a mix of natural sounds and artificial elements much like the band's own artwork. Even the singles, "Cascade" and "Lifeforms," play down the beat. The one for "Cascade" is barely there, swooping samples and soft synth hooks to the fore, while "Lifeforms," for its comparatively more direct impact, relies as much on its keyboard swell and chiming melody as much as the complex overlay of rhythms. There are a few guest appearances here and there, but they're mostly notable for how the band incorporate them instead of letting them stand out -- Robert Fripp's guitar on "Flak," Talvin Singh's tablas on "Life Form Ends," and Toni Halliday from Curve doing a "vocal texture" on "Cerebral."
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 5/27/1994
  • Label: Astralwerks
  • UPC: 017046611329
  • Catalog Number: 6113
  • Sales rank: 126,031

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Cascade (5:59)
  2. 2 Ill Flower (3:24)
  3. 3 Flak (4:53)
  4. 4 Bird Wings (1:30)
  5. 5 Dead Skin Cells (6:50)
  6. 6 Life Forms (5:18)
  7. 7 Eggshell (6:45)
  8. 8 Among Myselves (5:52)
Disc 2
  1. 1 Domain (2:48)
  2. 2 Spineless Jelly (4:41)
  3. 3 Interstat (0:55)
  4. 4 Vertical Pig (6:44)
  5. 5 Cerebral (3:30)
  6. 6 Life Form Ends (5:03)
  7. 7 VIT (6:48)
  8. 8 Omnipresence (6:39)
  9. 9 Room 208 (6:12)
  10. 10 Elaborate Burn (3:15)
  11. 11 Little Brother (5:13)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
The Future Sound of London Primary Artist
Elizabeth Fraser Vocals
Technical Credits
Nightingale Contributor
Richard Thompson Contributor
Jeremy Wall Composer
The Future Sound of London Producer, Artwork
Robert Fripp Contributor
Grossart Contributor
Williams Contributor
YAGE Engineer
Buggy G. Riphead Art Direction
Garry Cobain Composer, Contributor
Brian Dougans Composer, Contributor
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 2 )
Rating Distribution

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Unique, mesmerising

    The Future Sound Of London are electronic music's ultimate supergroup, and this is their unique masterpiece. Through the late 80s and early 90s the duo had produced under many aliases, riding on the back of Britain's new acid house / rave culture. In '92 they scored their biggest hit with Papua New Guinea, and in so doing landed a new record deal and a huge advance. This they ploughed into a new studio, and ditching commercial dance, came of age with one incredible ambient listening experience. From the sounds of the Amazon rain forest to far eastern tribal wails, it is laden with gorgeous samples from a world you'd imagine you're ancestors inhabited thousands of years ago. Yet as much as this is a work of the ancient and natural, it is also a modern and urban sounding album. From the pounding techno beats of the title track, to the bleep electronica of "Spineless Jelly" to the souring airplane samples on "Vit". This is music both for the city and the wilderness. Incredible!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 30, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews