Mathias ( Argentina )
The Song “Avril 14th” by Aphex Twin – Mathias’ goosebump moment
“Hi, I’m Mathias and I’m from Argentina. My goosebump moment is the song “Avril 14th” by British producer and composer Robert D. James, but better known as Apex Twin. “Avril 14th” is a short classical piano composition that is very pretty, very beautiful, but also kind of sad, kind of melancholic. What I think makes this song really special is that the original recording was actually not interpreted as a musician, but rather by a special mechanical piano that plays by itself called a disklavier. And you can actually hear the clicks and clacks from the machine behind the piano keys in the original recording. This gives it, in my opinion, a subtle, but unnerving, uncanny and yet beautiful, beautiful feeling. I cannot help but feel goosebumps every time I hear it.”
A Musical Gem by Aphex Twin
In the vast realm of electronic music, Aphex Twin, the enigmatic and innovative artist known as Richard D. James, stands as a true pioneer. Among his extensive repertoire of groundbreaking tracks, one piece stands out like a delicate, musical jewel: “Avril 14th.”
This singular composition is a part of his album “Drukqs,” released on October 22, 2001, and it diverges from James’ typical electronic soundscapes by embracing the simplicity and beauty of a two-part piano composition.
“Drukqs” itself was a notable release, making its mark on the charts by reaching the 22nd position on the UK Albums chart and an impressive 6th place on the US Dance Albums chart. However, it’s “Avril 14th” that has endured as a timeless classic, captivating listeners with its raw emotional depth and stripped-down elegance.
One intriguing chapter in the story of “Avril 14th” involves its unexpected appearance in Kanye West’s track, “Blame Game.” Richard D. James was confronted with a rather peculiar situation when West’s representatives seemingly attempted to sidestep compensation for the use of his composition. In response, James countered their claims with a simple but resolute statement, “It’s not yours, it’s ours.”
The fascinating aspect of this dispute lies in the piano part itself. While it might seem like a straightforward case of sampling, the melody is so meticulously crafted that it has led some to believe Kanye West may have re-recorded the piece rather than directly sampling it.
In the liner notes for West’s album “My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy,” there’s a cryptic acknowledgment: “Blame Game” contains elements of “Avril 14” by Richard James. This subtle nod only adds to the mystique surrounding the track.
“Avril 14th” is a testament to the enduring power of music, transcending genres and eras. It’s a piece that proves how simplicity can be a profound form of artistry and how unexpected connections in the music world can arise, even when boundaries seem to separate different musical universes.
Whether you encounter it in the melancholic depths of “Drukqs” or the inventive fusion of “Blame Game,” this musical gem by Aphex Twin will continue to resonate with audiences, reminding us of the boundless creativity and unpredictability of the world of music.
More About The Song “Avril 14th” by Aphex Twin:
- Avril 14th – Wikipedia
- The Long Tail of Aphex Twin’s ‘Avril 14th’ – The New York Times
- Aphex Twin Discography