Dec 31, 2017

Best electronic albums of 2017: Color, noise and more

The top 20 best electronic albums are progressing nicely, but let's take a break to stuff some more also-rans down your music pipe so you can smoke every last one of them. Here's a hotch-potch of various genres that didn't quite make the cut.

I enjoyed getting greased up on the oily, dirty electro on Patricia's Several Shades Of The Same Color (Spectral Sound), while it's worth checking in on Le Car's Auto-Reverse (Clone Classic Cuts) and its old-school claps, blaps and bleeps. Oh and let's not forget Floating Points' sandswept but somewhat noodly Reflections - Mojave Desert (Pluto).

Here are some noisy ones for you. Tzusing's 東方不敗 (L.I.E.S.) put the "angst" into "bangers" if you ignore some of the letters. Emptyset made a load of instruments for Borders (Thrill Jockey) to produce some nicely rasping sound design. And Pharmakon's Contact (Sacred Bones Records) prompted me to open my Electronic Sound review with: "The hairy wet artwork of Contact will grab your attention way before the screaming begins."

Definitely make some mp3 space for Biogen's posthumous retrospective Halogen Continues (Trip) and its lovely Icelandic IDM that spins from zaniness to glistening ambience. And James 'Drexciya' Stinson's back catalogue popped out some unreleased work in the form of Jack Peoples' Laptop Cafe (Clone Aqualung Series) - just imagine if IDM-heads took over Radio 2. Also worth a nosey is his classic work as The Other People Place: the reissued Lifestyles Of The Laptop Café (Warp Records) has some great Drexiyan IDM, overlooked first time round.

One thing I should mention before I forget: Stinson aside, I've tried to steer clear of reissues, soundtracks and compilations in this end-of-year round-up. I have too much on my list as it is. So apologies to Leftism 22 and Kraftwerk, and to Oneohtrix Point Never, Winged Victory For The Sullen, and the various people who did Fabric and DJ Kicks compilations. SORRY, EVERYONE.

Scroll all of the best 2017 electronic albums by clicking here.

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