On the heels of announcements made via zeppelin and sites that can only be accessed using deep web browsers, Aphex Twin’s Richard D. James has shared more details on his forthcoming new album by using his mouth. So, that’s boring. Still, any new information on Syro—the first Aphex Twin album in 13 years—is notable, even if it is conveyed in the dull guttural stops and starts of human language.
At least some of that language is completely made up, as James confirms to Pitchfork that the album title is pronounced “Sigh-Ro,” based on a word concocted by one of his children. (Note: Having children is also boring.) Furthermore, most of its more properly inscrutable song names are adapted from the machines he used to create them. And some of them contain vocals from James and whole family—his wife, his kids, his parents—but these are described as “unintelligible.” Fortunately, James’ fondness for being straightforward in interviews has not extended to writing ballads. Yet.
That said, James did say SYRO is the “most accessible” of the many potential albums he’s long been said to be working on. As he explains to The Fader, the oldest track on SYRO dates to about six or seven years, though it’s also heavy on new compositions. And it sounds as though we won’t have to wait another decade-plus to hear more from that reserve, as SYRO has “kicked into gear” his drive to release more. “I’d stockpiled up so much stuff and you can kind of have to draw a line under it somewhere,” James says. “By banging something out it, it’s like the end of the chapter. It properly draws a line under it and allows you to move on.”
However, despite what you may have come across on YouTube, you actually haven’t heard anything from SYRO just yet: James dispelled the rumors that he himself is behind some of those “leaks” that have made their way online, even though he seems a bit envious that they’ve already attracted so much attention.
“I saw the first one that got up, it’s got like 26,000 views already, so obviously there’s a lot of incentive for people to do fakes. It’s like, ‘Shit, I should have put the real one up there.’ I can’t put it up yet, though, can I? How much do you get paid for a YouTube thing?” But provided no one tells James that you can get $2 per 1,000 views, we’ll get to experience SYRO as we were meant to: in a series of tracks that can only be assembled after piecing together strands of old Usenet discussions, as well as on insanely expensive vinyl you have to enter a lottery just to win the chance to buy.