Geogaddi

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Geogaddi
Studio album by Boards of Canada
Released 13 February 2002 (2002-02-13) (Japan)
18 February 2002 (2002-02-18) (Europe)
19 February 2002 (2002-02-19) (USA)
Recorded Hexagon Sun studio
Pentland Hills, Scotland
Genre Ambient techno, Dark ambient
Length 66:06 (standard)
68:14 (Japanese)
Label Warp Records WARP101
Producer Michael Sandison and Marcus Eoin
Boards of Canada chronology
In a Beautiful Place Out in the Country
(2000)
Geogaddi
(2002)
The Campfire Headphase
(2005)

Geogaddi is the second album by Boards of Canada, released in February 2002. It presents a darker sound than its predecessor Music Has the Right to Children. The title of the album has no conclusive meaning.[1]

Overview[edit]

Geogaddi revisits the innocent, childlike melodic and harmonic structure found throughout the band's previous album, Music Has the Right to Children. This album, however, explores motifs considered by some to be quite dark, while to others they appear very innocent. For example, some fans interpret the song titles as having various dark/occult connotations: references to horned gods ("You Could Feel the Sky"), Branch Davidian cultism ("1969"), backmasking ("A Is to B as B Is to C") and hypnotism ("The Devil Is in the Details"): these are of course interpretations, unconfirmed by the band and open to further analysis. Though it retains Boards of Canada's trademark soundscapes and melodic vignettes, the album can be unsettling and fraught with paranoia to some.

Geogaddi is a record for some sort of trial-by-fire, a claustrophobic, twisting journey that takes you into some pretty dark experiences before you reach the open air again. It has a kind of narrative. – Michael Sandison

The album received mixed reviews the year of its release from some critics who were unimpressed by what they saw as the lack of development since 1998's Music Has the Right to Children. However, it has since become considered a classic of the genre.[citation needed]

The duo and their record label, Warp Records, announced Geogaddi with little fanfare. The album premiered in six cities around the world: London, New York, Tokyo, Edinburgh, Paris, and Berlin. They provided only one press interview, for the NME via email.

The album is available in three formats: Standard jewel case CD packaging, limited edition hardbound book packaged with a CD and extra artwork enclosed, and a triple record package.[2] Side F of the vinyl package, with the track "Magic Window", is uncut and contains a visible etching of a nuclear family.[2][3] "Magic Window" is a track of pure silence in all three formats.

The artwork of the album carries a distinct kaleidoscopic motif. The limited edition version comes with a 12-page booklet exhibiting artwork.[4] The triple record set holds inner-sleeves that feature artwork on either side. In fact, a kaleidoscope was originally for sale when Geogaddi was first released[4] and can often be found floating around online auctions.

The band received the idea to make the track time total 66 minutes and 6 seconds from Warp Records president Steve Beckett, his reasoning being to joke around with the listeners and imply the Devil had created the album.[5] The track "Gyroscope" contains samples of a numbers station sampled by Sean Booth of Autechre, as confirmed by a representative of Hexagon Sun on the WATMM forum.[6]

The Japanese edition of Geogaddi features an additional track titled "From One Source All Things Depend". This short track contains many samples of children praying and explaining who they believe God to be. Some of the same children's audio samples can be heard in the song "I Can Feel Him in the Morning'" by the American rock band Grand Funk Railroad on their 1971 album Survival. The original source of these samples is unknown.

The album's title is unexplained, combining the prefix geo- (earth) with, perhaps, the name of a tribe of Hindu nomads known for their uncommonly peaceful lifestyle, the Gaddi. An alternative meaning to the title is Geo(earth) – gad(possibly meaning deity) – di(meaning two, the brothers who make up the band).

Reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Aggregate scores
Source Rating
Metacritic 84/100[7]
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 4.5/5 stars[8]
Stylus Magazine B+[9]
Entertainment Weekly B+[10]
Pitchfork Media 8.6/10[11]
Q 4/5 stars[12]
Uncut 5/5 stars[13]
Tiny Mix Tapes 4.5/5 stars[14]
Spin 8/10 stars[15]
NME 9/10 stars[16]
Drowned in Sound 9/10 stars[17]

The album received universal acclaim based on 21 critics' reviews and has a score of 84 out of 100 from Metacritic.[18] Kitty Empire of NME said "Easily the electronic album of the year....Deliciously saturated with the recurring motifs which have marked them out as an individual voice in electronic music...a meeting of the natural with the digital, and here it's eerier than ever before."[19] Pitchfork also gave a positive review while noting the album's lack of change from their earlier debut album saying "While some will complain about Boards of Canada's failure to cover new territory, which puts them apart from the praised eclectic "searchers" of the music scene [...] the rest of us will delight in what we see as a very accomplished album packed with great music."[20] The album appeared on several end of year "best of" lists.[21]

Track listing[edit]

All songs written and composed by Marcus Eoin and Mike Sandison

No. Title Length
1. "Ready Lets Go"   0:59
2. "Music Is Math"   5:21
3. "Beware the Friendly Stranger"   0:37
4. "Gyroscope"   3:34
5. "Dandelion"   1:15
6. "Sunshine Recorder"   6:12
7. "In the Annexe"   1:22
8. "Julie and Candy"   5:30
9. "The Smallest Weird Number"   1:17
10. "1969"   4:20
11. "Energy Warning"   0:35
12. "The Beach at Redpoint"   4:18
13. "Opening the Mouth"   1:11
14. "Alpha and Omega"   7:02
15. "I Saw Drones"   0:27
16. "The Devil Is in the Details"   3:53
17. "A Is to B as B Is to C"   1:40
18. "Over the Horizon Radar"   1:08
19. "Dawn Chorus"   3:55
20. "Diving Station"   1:26
21. "You Could Feel the Sky"   5:14
22. "Corsair"   2:52
23. "Magic Window"   1:46
Total length:
66:06
Japanese bonus track
No. Title Length
24. "From One Source All Things Depend"   2:10
Total length:
68:16

The tracks "1969", "Dawn Chorus", "The Beach at Redpoint", and "Julie and Candy" have been used in the BBC's motoring show Top Gear and "Beware The Friendly Stranger" is featured multiple times in David Firth's flash animation Salad Fingers. The track "Gyroscope" is featured in the 2012 supernatural horror film Sinister.

On vinyl versions, "Magic Window" is not a track, but a carving of a nuclear family on the B-side of the third disc.

Personnel[edit]

Boards of Canada[edit]

  • Michael Sandison – performer
  • Marcus Eoin – performer

Technical[edit]

  • Peter Campbell – cover photograph
  • Michael Sandison – producer, artwork, photography
  • Marcus Eoin – producer, artwork, photography

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Mark Pytlik (2002). "The Colour & The Fire". HMV. Retrieved 2006-11-24. [dead link]
  2. ^ a b "Boards of Canada Discography". 2006. Retrieved 2006-11-24. [dead link]
  3. ^ "Images for Boards of Canada – Geogaddi". Discogs. Retrieved 2012-06-08. 
  4. ^ a b Warp Records (2002). "Warp Records; Geogaddi". Warp Records. Archived from the original on 2007-05-21. Retrieved 2006-11-24. 
  5. ^ Heiko Hoffmann (2005). "Stirred Up the Ashes". Flavorpill Productions LLC. Archived from the original on 2006-11-21. Retrieved 2006-11-24. 
  6. ^ "The Conet Project/Gyroscope – Boards of Canada Forum – We Are The Music Makers Forums". Forum.watmm.com. Retrieved 2014-04-12. 
  7. ^ "Geogaddi Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved 2014-04-12. 
  8. ^ http://www.allmusic.com/album/r572257
  9. ^ "Boards of Canada – Geogaddi – Review". Stylus Magazine. Retrieved 2014-04-12. 
  10. ^ Entertainment Weekly (3/22/02, p.110) – "...Murky electronic grooves lurch forward llike industrial bilge through a junkyard....Their depth-of-field approach is abstract but has just enough focus to sustain clarity..." – Rating: B+
  11. ^ "Boards of Canada: Geogaddi | Album Reviews". Pitchfork. 2002-02-21. Retrieved 2014-04-12. 
  12. ^ Q (4/02, p.110) – 4 out of 5 stars – "...A labyrinth of melodic and textural twists that enthrals rather than assaults..."
  13. ^ More of the same, only more so. [Apr 2002, p.94]
  14. ^ [1][dead link]
  15. ^ Spin (May 2002, pp.120–122) – 8 out of 10 – "...The Scottish duo favors smudgy, just slightly out-of-tune analog synth tones evocative of faded home movies and washed-out photographs....a thoroughly satisfying album..."
  16. ^ NME (Magazine) (2/16/02, p.39) – 9 out of 10 – "...Easily the electronic album of the year....Deliciously saturated with the recurring motifs which have marked them out as an individual voice in electronic music...a meeting of the natural with the digital, and here it's eerier than ever before..."
  17. ^ Anonymous, Adam (2002-02-20). "Album Review: Boards of Canada – Geogaddi / Releases / Releases // Drowned In Sound". Drownedinsound.com. Retrieved 2014-04-12. 
  18. ^ "Metacritic review of Geogaddi". Metacritic. Retrieved 2011-07-07. 
  19. ^ "NME review of Geogaddi". NME. Retrieved 2011-07-07. 
  20. ^ "Pitchfork review of Geogaddi". Pitchfork. Retrieved 2011-07-07. 
  21. ^ "Mojo's Best of 2002 album list with Geogaddi at #16". Mojo. Retrieved 2011-07-07. 

External links[edit]