µ-ZIQ Tango N Vectif (Rephlex)
µ-Ziq is the brainspawn of Mike Paradinas (albeit augmented here on the projects 1993 debut by Francis Naughton). Given that its released on Richard D James label, James and Paradinas collaborated under their first names on the Expert Knob Twiddlers album and RDJ provides the cover image, whose music do you think Tango N Vectif might be reminiscent of? Its almost too easy, isnt it?
Admittedly, theres certainly an initial rush of excitement on discovering such an abundance of echt-AFX material, but its soon diminished by the realisation that µ-Ziqs music resolutely fails to lodge in the cranium. Ive played some of these 15 tracks over 20 times, but I still couldnt hum a few bars of Swan Vesta or Phi* 1700 (u/v) if my life depended on it. Unfortunately, much of Tango N Vectif is as deliberately stylised as its retroid, Tristan Fabriani-style booklet notes.
Its not without humour - Burn Sienna sneaks a fragment of the Postman Pat theme into its chiming, intertwining loops but the likes of Iesope meander aimlessly, and Auqeams clanking, distorted machine shop beats mightve sounded brutal 15 years ago but cant help seem a bit old-fangled nowadays. Likewise, The Sonic Fox is car alarm techno without the panache RDJ brings to the genre, and Amenidas kung fu beats sound like an elderly computer game soundtrack.
Despite the imitation Aphexy fingerprints all over it, Tango N Vectif sounds almost like a test card µ-Zak perversion of Mr James many talents.