Tunes 2011-2019

Tunes 2011-2019

If nothing else, Burial helped dispel some basic myths about dance music: that its funkiness would always be at odds with its viability for home (and/or solo) use, that it doesn’t lend itself to narrative, that as a delivery system for profound human emotion it could never quite measure up to more old-fashioned models of music-making. Collecting singles, EPs, and various collaborations made in the wake of 2007’s Untrue, Tunes 2011-2019 is stunning not just for how well it balances creature comforts with the genuinely avant-garde, but for how diverse it is, especially considering how easily he could have made Untrue II before the world had a chance to catch up. That these haunted landscapes of beat-free ambience (“State Forest,” “Beachfires,” “Subtemple”), extraterrestrial bangers (“Claustro,” “Rival Dealer”), and rain-streaked ballads for the apocalypse (“Come Down to Us”) are gestures of the same mind is a demonstration of creative bravery. That they fit together so beautifully and cinematically—over two and a half hours, no less—is just another example of his artistic prowess.

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