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Music Has The Right To Children

4.5 out of 5 stars 214 customer reviews

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Audio CD, March 23, 2004
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Editorial Reviews

2004 REISSUE : Includes rare BONUS track "Happy Cycling"! Debut 1998 album from the mysterious Scottish duo ... a folktronica benchmark.
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (March 23, 2004)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Warp Records
  • ASIN: B0001RVTWA
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (214 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #6,592 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Amazon's Boards Of Canada Store

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
This is the album that introduced most of us to Boards of Canada's unique sound back in 1998, now back in a slick digipak reissue from Warp. "Music has the right to children" is probably the best introduction to Boards of Canada's distinctive music. For me, it's still their best overall, and one of my all-time favorite albums: a moody, shifting analogue synth-sample-and-beat fest, by turns funky and melancholy, full of rare beauty. The unusual samples and frequent use of "backwards" elements (and the cryptic packaging) give great touches of mystery and humor to the proceedings, although have also given rise to all kinds of strange ideas about Boards of Canada. Ignore the timid, small-minded conspiracy theorists and paranoids who fret about these things, and enjoy the music!

It's hard to pick a favorite track, but the one that always makes me stop and repeat it is "Rue the Whirl": swirling synths and a decent beat, quite simple in some ways, but it's that repeated organ stab used as a rhythmic device that really gets me. "Telephasic Workshop" is another standout (more rhythmic use of non-percussion sounds), the transition between "Bocuma" and "Roygbiv" still gives me goosebumps, "Aquarius" very fine, but it's all good, it's all great. The original US release added a "bonus track" called "Happy Cycling" from BOC's "Peel Sessions" EP, and it is again included on this reissue for the whole world to hear. This track is fine, but better in its original context on "Peel Sessions"; as a whole, I think the album makes more sense ending as it did originally with "One very important thought" (a track sadly even more relevant now in 2004 than when it first came out). "Happy Cycling" or no, "Music has the right to children" is a great album: BUY IT!
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Format: Audio CD
I've always been a big fan of electronic music, but this album, while retaining all the required bleeps, clicks and beats of the genre, transcends its counterparts by being so subtly beautiful. That's an important thing to remember, however: this album is subtle--no instant gratification or adrenaline rushes that would leave you dancing to a raging beat. It's a gradual kind of listening experience, and concentrates on quiet, persistent melodies that weave in and out of the foreground, and the beats are gradual and soft for the most part--like some of the more gentle songs from aphex twin. The technical excellence is there, like the afore mentioned idm god aphex twin or the likes of autuchre or even orbital. But there is something very candid and childlike in some of these songs-- like roygbiv or aquarius--that remind one of the innocence of childhood, and hazy memories of eating cheerios while watching saturday morning cartoons, catching grasshoppers, and playing in the park immediately come to mind. But other songs like telephasic workshop sound much more grown up (my favorite) begins crackly and muffled like an old favorite record, but gradually works itself up to a beat-intensified frenzy, with really cool voices lapping over one another as they compete with a beat that gradually overtakes them. One of the best electronic albums I have. On a side note, if you like Boards of Canada, and want something similiar but more mellow, try Biosphere or Selected Ambient Works II by Aphex Twin. But if you like something a tad more beat-oriented and deconstructive and desolate, try Autechre. A little more ambient, like the shorter tracks on this album, try Pete Namlook--sure to please!
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Format: Audio CD
The first full-length album of BoC is a masterpiece of sorts. The material is accurately chosen and sorted in a way to resemble a "mini suite". The music shows influences from various musicians, but always manages to be original. "Telephasic Workshps" is a bit of "My life in the bust of ghosts" (especially "Mea Culpa"); "Turquoise Exagon Sun" has trip-hop overtones (of the Portishead variety). Electric piano and Moog (with additional sound treatment) are ubiquitous, providing a pleasant progressive (say, Tangerine Dream) and/or electric jazz touch to the songs. And are the numbers in "Aquarius" a little quotation from "Einstein on the Beach" by Glass? Overall, I would play the influence of Autechre (and AFX) down: it is present in the rythm programming, but not overwhelming. BOC is not rythm-driven as Autechre or AFX, but rather melody-driven. In fact, what I most liked in this CD is the beauty of the progression of the chords. The melodies are original and never trivial. Sandison and Eoin seem musicians-turned-musicians and not DJs-turned-musicians. This is what makes a BOC piece so easy to recognize and fresh.
A recommended CD for any fan of high-quality electronica who wants to listen to something different than the usual suspects.
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Format: Audio CD
I'm not one to go dishing out the five star reviews with casual disregard, but this album really defies superlatives.
On music has the right to children, BOC have tapped into all the strangeness and magic of early childhood memories. The songs envelop the listener with sounds and textures that seem so familiar, that they could almost be memories. I know that much of the music has been culled from those old educational videos of sperwhales mating and what not, but BOC have created something entirely their own with it. Their beats are intricate and often innovative, listen to the chopped up voices on the fourth track, but never too demanding for meditative listening. The sounds swoop and crackle in a really human way. I wish everyone who thinks there's no heart and soul in electronic music was forced to listen to this album until they ate their words!!!
But this album and listen to it late it night. It'll take you places you've long forgotten about, like a patch of nettles on a Summer's day or climbing a skeletal tree on a windy wet afternoon, hands cold and covered in dirt. I swear you'll never hear anything else like it, Until the next BOC release of course.
Five stars, and I really mean it!!!!!!
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