A purveyor of experimental music and a bass guitar fanatic, Squarepusher has become one of the world's most respected electronic artists releasing one acclaimed record after another on the mighty Warp Records. It probably won't come as any surprise to find that Hello Everything is the most hotly anticipated electronica release this year, and Squarepusher's 10th album in as many years.
Switching from Gameboy tones to characterless jazz pieces to drones, this record doesn't really get off the ground up until track four with Planetarium, which is dark, moody drum n' bass with Kraftwerk-esque synth tones. Other highpoints include the stunning Circlewave 2 which features a subtle but sweeping soundscape that sounds like it came straight out of the Boards of Canada school of programming, sparse offbeat drum rhythms, and beautifully intricate Latin guitar playing; it's a strange and wonderfully complex concoction of music. The modern bass guitar is perhaps the most outlandish track on the album with Squarepusher's bass guitar taking on many guises via an array of devastating FX over a speedy old-skool drum rhythm. And the album closer Orient Orange is a well-crafted film-like soundscape, but rather unfortunately, it fails to live long in the memory.
With Hello Everything you have music for film, music for games, and music you'd expect to hear whilst marching up and down the isles of your local supermarket. It's all just a little too sketchy with no real direction or purpose. And although Tom Jenkinson's extraordinary high level of musicianship is never in doubt, all in all this eagerly awaited record is a little disappointing, especially considering the standards we have come to expect for Warp and Tom Jenkinson. Amongst all the disjointed material this could have been an outstanding Squarepusher EP, but as an album this isn't much better than mediocre.