There must be something in the water over there in merry old England, because Warp and its established roster seem to be sipping from the musical equivalent of the Holy Grail. From Aphex Twin to Squarepusher to Autechre, they have mystified and enthralled audiences for well over a decade. In recent years, labelmates Plaid have stepped up to bat and swung like their last names were Sosa and McGwire. Double Figure marks album number three, and with it, the group has finally carved its own niche among so many renowned names. Electro gets immediate attention on “Eyen” and “Assault on Precinct Zero,” but Plaid has found a way to strip the style’s catchy aesthetics and reveal its melodic flexibility. Rather than rely on frenetic impulses like many of their brethren, the duo allows more structure and real songwriting to seep into each heavily layered track. Double Figure rarely subsides, relinquishing any calm moments to the irresistible uptempo songs that you knew these guys were always capable of. Keep on sipping, mates.
Warp Records, P.O. Box 25378, London, NWS 1GL; http://www.warprecords.com