Searching through Four Tet's comprehensive back catalogue is always a delight, his latest album There Is Love In You is definitely a personal favourite, but in terms of real night-time music, there is one release that stands out on its own.
Four Tet - Part One (EighteenFourtyThree) (Output)
That release is ThirtySixTwentyFive, an aptly-named debut from Kieran Hebden as a solo artist. This is one track, 36 minutes and 25 seconds long (although on the vinyl release, it is split over 2 single-sided plates). The first track above is the first half. Beginning with a sparse, reverbed guitar that would be fellow Elliott School alumni The xx personified, if only they'd released music 11 years earlier, before hectic, breaky jazz drums make their entrance. Things build to a climax even more as some instrument (I dunno what it is, big up the wind instrument heads that do) and reach the crescendo before calming down again, building up an ending to the first side, and an intro to the second simultaneously.
Four Tet - Part Two (SeventeenFourtyTwo) (Output)
On this side, there's more of an EDM feel for me, although there are still some elements from the other side to hold things together, and remind you that this isn't an album. There's some more improvised sounding stuff, and some sweet little guitar riff bubbling away underneath the rest of the sounds, driving the second half of the track forward. Kinda wish that would get a more prominent role, but whatever, maybe it wouldn't have worked if it did.
The track pretty much comes to end there, until we are treated to something that might freak you out the first time. About 3 or 4 minutes of a looped recording of a girl laughing before saying "With buzzing stereo noises" over and over, until that gives way to some piano and flute music for the last couple of minutes. Shit sounds like it comes from a kid's TV show from the 60's. Straight interesting.
In hindsight, maybe it was Four Tet's intention to give a sampler of what the next 13 years would see from him, or maybe it's just coincidence, but this monster track sums up his entire body of work perfectly. Bag it on vinyl if you can, but for the digital heads, you can download this, and I mean, £1 for 36 minutes of music is a bargain. Bang it on, lie down, and listen to it. You won't regret it.