Despite it being 13 years since we last heard a full studio album from Aphex Twin, this has undoubtedly been the most anticipated in his career. Always known for cutting his own path in the electronic music scene, producer Richard James made himself a household name in the 90s, combining nihilistic and abstract ideas into an over-commercialised dance music environment that ultimately inspired a whole generation of musicians that were looking to break away from the norm. But has being away from the limelight given the producer a new angle to work from or will 'SYRO' simply be business as usual?
While on the surface 'SYRO' is a typical Aphex Twin record, throwing about beats and bass-drops in an almost lacklustre fashion, there is still a core sound to this album that shows exactly how the producer has matured over the years. There may not be as much of the sheer, out-of-control sound he was made famous for, but there is plenty of diversity on this album that allows him to give you a whole spectrum of his capabilities and unleashes multiple surprises from start to finish.
It may not be one of his most accomplished works to date, but 'SYRO' still has that same magic running throughout every track that lets you know that only one person could have possibly made this record. A solid return to form, even if he has reigned himself in a bit this time round.