Ricardo Villalobos ‎– Thé Au Harem D'Archimède

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Tracklist

Hireklon 9:01
Serpentin 9:46
For All Seasons 4:27
Théorème D'Archimède 6:50
Hello Halo 8:12
Temenarc 2 6:01
Temenarc 1 7:27
Miami 9:00
True To Myself 14:18

Versions (5)

Cat# Artist Title (Format) Label Cat# Country Year
PERL43CD Ricardo Villalobos Thé Au Harem D'Archimède(CD, Album) Perlon PERL43CD Germany 2004 Sell This Version
PERL 43 Ricardo Villalobos Thé Au Harem D'Archimède(3x12", Album) Perlon PERL 43 Germany 2004 Sell This Version
PERL 43 Ricardo Villalobos Thé Au Harem D'Archimède(3x12", Album, Promo) Perlon PERL 43 Germany 2004 Sell This Version
PERL 43CD PROMO Ricardo Villalobos Thé Au Harem D'Archimède(CD, Album, Promo) Perlon PERL 43CD PROMO Germany 2004 Sell This Version
PERL43CDJP Ricardo Villalobos Thé Au Harem D'Archimède(CD, Album) Perlon PERL43CDJP Japan 2010 Sell This Version

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stam25

stam25

October 27, 2018
referencing Thé Au Harem D'Archimède, 3x12", Album, PERL 43
Anyone with a spare sleeve please pm word word word
Alex_Celler

Alex_Celler

June 9, 2018
edited 10 months ago
referencing Thé Au Harem D'Archimède, 3x12", Album, PERL 43

If Alcachofa is the album that changed the course of house & techno, redefining the genres for years to come, then Thé Au Harem D'Archimède is the album which propelled them to a different dimension of possibilities and proved that Ricardo is simply in a level of his own, light years ahead. If anybody has doubts about the kind of maestro he is, a careful listening session of this LP will provide definitive answers.

But then again, such advanced and enigmatic productions, such intricate musical language might not be grasped or understood by every single electronic music fan out there and that’s fair enough. There’s an inherent number of hidden layers in Ricardo’s beat programming, in his soundscapes, melodies, textures and the slowly evolving sonic background of his music. Thus, if you like your beats mostly chunky and straight up, then this LP might not be for you.

Open and closed hihats are usually the main elements driving classic house and techno. A 909 or 808 typically provides these hihats, along with snares, claps and kickdrums. They make up the characteristic sound palette of electronic dance music, which many of us love. Here, Ricardo is completely brushing these sounds aside, cutting ties with tradition. He then presents us with an impossible recipe of syncopated modular grooves, intertwined with poly rhythmic Latin percussion and melodious synth lines, all playing in tandem with plenty of swing. Now, add to this a fair amount of effects and his incredibly intricate arrangements: The result is nothing less than an authentic, ingenious and modern take on the genres, full of funk and shuffle.

Was this a conscious choice (to avoid using standard 909 / 808 sounds) or did it just come out as it did? Also, how do you make music that complex without ever sounding overproduced? If you ask him, he'd reply (in typical Ricardo fashion) probably something like ''i don't know, i am just making it..!''.

Hireklon and Serpentine Tale are two of the ‘’less daunting’’ tracks in the LP, although I find this term somewhat inappropriate, they are both masterpieces. The atonal, guitar solo on the CD version of Hireklon is a homage to serialism and twelve tone music (as part of it appears to lacks a tonal centre?) while Serpentin’s bassline is slowly pitch shifting, creating a simple but catchy riff. The drum programming in this track, is quite frankly as good as drum programming gets.

The rest of the tracks are, some of the most fascinating and superb (released) compositions from Ricardo to this day. What can one say for Miami? How good is the drum programming? But, wait a second, there are no actual drums in the track. It’s a concoction of modular zaps, clicks and synth lines combined and stitched up to perfection. How can you describe Theoreme D’Archimede? Genre defiant is the first thing that comes to mind: an inherent characteristic of truly innovative and ground-breaking music. How do the inconspicuous synth lines in the opening of the same track evolve into a fully fledged tune? So elegantly and so naturally. The same for both Temenarcs: Hihats and Snares give way to sound design and textures, which instead provide the driving force. True to Myself is the perfect ending, a melding of Ricardo’s two big influences: Jazz and Latin.

Ricardo has mentioned in interviews his appreciation for Autechre and their music. He has said that he tries to marry their approach in sound design and production with house music. And although Autechre themselves were interestingly not so prepared to receive the compliment (according to their 2009 Fact interview), who can say that in this album Ricardo didn’t succeed?
swil.wilson

swil.wilson

August 9, 2013
referencing Thé Au Harem D'Archimède, 3x12", Album, PERL 43
I just purchased the repress of Thé Au Harem D'Archimède, and while the music is excellent, I found that the record is cut in such a way that it is very prone to skipping. It appears to have to been mastered a bit too hot, as the loudest, bassiest portions tend to send the needle flying. I had to increase the tracking force on my turntable a few degrees just to get it to play through.

However, I am really enjoying the longer versions of the tracks. I've previously owned the CD, and it's cool, but the way Villalobos expands classics like "Hireklon" is pretty incredible and hypnotic.

Enjoy the album, but beware of the vinyl pressing.
manutz

manutz

January 14, 2013
referencing Thé Au Harem D'Archimède, 3x12", Album, PERL 43

are they repress the complete catalogue?
dclambert

dclambert

November 27, 2007
referencing Thé Au Harem D'Archimède, CD, Album, PERL43CD

First of all, this guy is a production virtuoso. Villalobos is in the same league as Alex Patterson and Richard D. James.

This release is no exception to his brilliant catalogue of music. The album is bookended by the two best tracks: "hireklon" and "true to myself." They are two of the most hypnotizing electonic music tracks I've heard.

While tech-house and especially minimalistic techno can begin to eat away at your consciousness after a while, Villalobos's work is a ray of sunshine.

In the case of this album though, that ray of sunshine is warm but dark. These tracks wreak of menace and brilliance. Highly, highly recommended.

ps. If you are like me and rate the tracks on your albums, here's a tip: the worst track is "Hello Halo"--but since he's so far above most other producers, it's still pretty good.
pinpoint23

pinpoint23

September 13, 2006
edited over 14 years ago
referencing Thé Au Harem D'Archimède, 3x12", Album, PERL 43
I was somewhat surprised upon recieving my LP that the version of "Hireklon" is very different from the CD edition of this album. The style is more abstract and meandering, and alas does not include the textured, reverberated handclaps of the CD version. Frankly I'm a bit disappointed with this remixed "Hireklon" and would much rather play the CD version at a party.
AntShaw

AntShaw

June 13, 2006
edited over 14 years ago
referencing Thé Au Harem D'Archimède, CD, Album, PERL43CD
This is a flat out brilliant release. It has the classic Villalobos feel. But, if I needed to add an additional adjective to that it would be 'experimental.' He starts off with some stormers in Hireklon and Serpentin. He hadds some interesting strings in Hireklon to complete the piece. There is no 'formula' in place for any of these tracks and they each have a mind of their own.
royal618

royal618

June 9, 2005
edited over 15 years ago
referencing Thé Au Harem D'Archimède, 3x12", Album, PERL 43
Brilliant. The use of different instruments in this is somewhat unusual, ecletic if you will. However, it's the sound of the harp in Hireklon that is the most amazing. The layers of sounds, the reverbed hand claps that sound like real hand claps, not from an 808.

This is minimalism for years to come.