Exotica (book)

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Exotica: Fabricated Soundscapes in a Real World
AuthorDavid Toop
Cover artistRussell Mills
PublisherSerpent's Tail
Publication date
15 June 1999
Preceded byOcean of Sound: Aether Talk, Ambient Sound and Imaginary Worlds (1995) 
Followed byHaunted Weather: Music, Silence, and Memory (2004) 

Exotica: Fabricated Soundscapes in a Real World is a 1999 non-fiction book by English musician and author David Toop. The work was first published on 15 June 1999 through Serpent's Tail and focuses on the musical genre exotica.[1]


In the book Toop discusses the musical genre of exotica as well as the general listener reaction. He also discusses his personal history with music, as personal tragedies left him feeling that music was trivial in comparison to his own grief. Toop details several recordings and includes interviews with musicians such as Burt Bacharach, Bill Laswell, and the Boo-Yaa T.R.I.B.E..


Critical reception has been predominantly positive.[2][3] The A.V. Club reviewed Exotica in 2002 and wrote that "The book is not always successful and sometimes close to incoherent, but it's a daring, unique effort."[4] The Chicago Reader and New Statesman also reviewed the work,[5] and the Chicago Reader commented that "Exotica is less an extension of Toop's worldview than a reiteration of it" but that "Even repeating himself, Toop's a more interesting read than almost anyone else writing about music today."[6]


  1. ^ Taylor, Timothy D (2001). Strange Sounds: Music, Technology and Culture. Routledge. pp. 224, 227, 268. ISBN 0415936837. Retrieved 11 July 2014.
  2. ^ GUICHARD, PHILIP. "Book Review Revue". The Stranger. Retrieved 11 July 2014.
  3. ^ "Over there (David Toop's Exotica)". The Boston Phoenix. Retrieved 11 July 2014.
  4. ^ "David Toop: Exotica: Fabricated Soundscapes In A Real World (review)". The A.V. Club. Retrieved 11 July 2014.
  5. ^ Huq, Rupa (31 May 1999). "Eastern promise". New Statesman. Retrieved 11 July 2014.
  6. ^ Matos, Michaelangelo. "All Over the Map". Chicago Reader. Retrieved 11 July 2014.