The press notes that accompany composer Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith’s latest opus bravely attempt to undermine the whole concept of ‘electronic’ music. The argument goes that, since electronics are now almost ubiquitous in the wider world of music production, the genre title has become meaningless.

Of course, we name genres as a way of ordering our thoughts, in the same way that we name particular objects to avoid having to describe in great detail their form and function every time we want to discuss them with other humans. Electronica is never going to adequately illustrate the entire canon that is hurriedly arranged beneath it – it’s just something to write on plastic tags in Rough Trade.

This point is made to illustrate the concept at the heart of Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith’s new record The Kid – the development of a human being from birth through youth, adolescence, middle-age and onto decrepitude and death, and to suggest that, rather than being restrained by preconceptions, KAS’s version of electronica crosses over into what we might call the organic. The concept (a musical bildungsroman akin to a 21st century Tristram Shandy) becomes the message. Human beings too are blessed, and cursed by their titles. Our names denote our gender, race, even suggesting personal traits. History bleeds through them.

Smith might have written the album along these Saussurean lines, but thankfully the delivery is nothing like as dry as my description makes it sound. The Kid is as playful, and sometimes as profound, as the Charlie Chaplin film that shares its title. It’s a beautiful, bouncing baby of a record that throws dozens of images, concepts and beats into a lush soundscape and moulds something wonderful. Perhaps it’s better described as a love letter to the potential inherent in humans, as opposed to the often-disappointing reality. We shouldn’t be surprised that it doesn’t quite achieve its ambition.

Although the opening 'I Am A Thought' recalls a sex education pastiche on Look Around You, the album quickly transitions into more original territory. 'An Intention' brings to mind Katie Gateley's exploded compositions; mirrored vocals, sucked through vocoders, swell and rotate. Smith suggests that consciousness at this stage is cyclical, a recurrent melody which struggles to move beyond simple structures. 'In The World' adds rhythmic pauses and arpeggiated side thoughts, as the child struggles with multiple, conflicting concepts and jabbing interruptions.

The album continues in this vein, elucidating on the journey towards and through middle age. Not everything lands in quite as satisfying a form. 'I Am Learning' doesn't seem to build upon earlier moments, and the repetitiveness of gloopy percussion and synthetic voices drags the concept down. Perhaps she is trying to suggest the built-in disappointment and degradation of teenage years. If so, something like glorious release soon appears on 'To Follow and Lead'.

Towards the album's close, we get the oddly unbalanced 'I Am Curious, I Care' and the expansive 'I Will Make Room For You'. The final tracks are performed in part by the Stargaze quartet, and far from sinking into some kind of autumnal stasis actually provide the most provocative section of the record. We're all allowed to be as scandalous as we like in our dotage.

If I have a criticism, it’s that the aged being that we’re left with is not, in many ways, that different to the potential hinted at at the outset. We all revert somewhat to a childlike state in old age, losing control of our bodies, demanding the care and attention of others. Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith looks at life and sees the endless possibility. It’s a sweet thought, and a compelling journey.