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Listen To Your Heart
02 Jun 17
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Review: Although they've delivered plenty of fine singles over the years, it's invariably Session Victim's albums that get us hot under the collar. This is primarily because it gives them a chance to showcase a wider range of grooves, tempos and instrumentations amongst the ear-pleasing dancefloor workouts. Their sunny disposition, noted sample-spotting ability and varied inspirations are all in evidence on the German duo's third full-length excursion. It's a deliciously evocative, enjoyable and mood enhancing affair that smilingly meanders between dreamy jazz-house bliss, Bossa-Balearic fusion, disco-sampling cheeriness, glistening slow jams, Afro-tinged deep house warmth and humid dub riddims (the impeccable "Castle For Sale"). In other words, it's another hugely enjoyable romp packed full of winning moments.
Talamanca System
19 May 17
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Review: Three years on from his first Talamanca System collaboration with Tuff City Kids duo Gerd Janson and Phillip Lauer, Mark Barrott gets the gang back together for an album of typically loved-up excursions. International Feel's eccentric press release describes it as "a sunburned imagination of a day and night spent on Ibiza during a moment in time that probably never was". Given the album's repeated nods to baggy, piano-laden Italian house, the saucer-eyed, sunrise-friendly brilliance of 808 State's "Pacific State", sun-kissed post Italo-disco chuggers, percussion-laden tropical workouts and head-in-the-clouds ambience, it's actually rather an apt description. It's shamelessly Balearic from start to finish, but pulls it off with an authenticity that others could only dream of.
Out Of The Blue
09 Jun 17
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Review: Out Of The Blue, Phil Mison's first compilation for some time, was apparently inspired by his first few trips to the White Isle of Ibiza, and specifically the unlikely set of circumstances that led to him filling in for Jose Padilla at Cafe Del Mar. Musically, it's reflective of the story, joining the dots between impossible-to-find rarities (see the loved-up instrumental jazz-rock of "Jelly" by The Cactus Rose Project and the life-affirming fusion business of Christoph Spendel Group's "Forever", for starters), huggable Balearic synth-pop, flamenco-inspired sunset gems, and a smattering of head-in-the-clouds Italian dream house killers. Given Mison's heritage and status as one of Balearica's top selectors, it's perhaps unsurprising that Out Of The Blue is undeniably brilliant.
PEDS 036
16 Jun 17
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Review: Berlin retro electronics from synth geniuses Thorsten Quaeschning and Ulrich Schnauss. Synthwaves pays homage to the masters of the past, yet feels fresh and enchanting. Rich, neon-lit patterns are modulated and mutated with precision into several post cosmic sounds to drift to. During two intense weeks in the capital, Quaeschning and Schnauss (both students of the great, late maestro Edgar Froese) are said to have locked themselves in a studio full of vintage synthesizers, analogue sequencers and drum machines and here are the impressive results. These tracks are so evocative and life affirming as you'd expect given the credentials of these producers: in particular the dreampop and nu-gaze prince Schnauss' contribution. As with the finest Tangerine Dream soundtracks, it's the kind of music that paints vivid pictures on the canvas of the listeners mind.
Balearic 3
12 Jun 17
from $1.05
Review: Here's a glorious selection of 12 bright and sun-drenched moments destined to be heard daily at the world's coolest beach clubs this summer and inevitably soundtracking a million gorgeous sunsets in Ibiza. This edition features exclusives aplenty. There are two album-only tracks; Tommy Awards gets an Ambient remix from Balearic's Jim Breese. Then The Madrigal blasts off with 'Ride To The Moon,' a completely unique track that's refreshing to hear. Three tracks were previously unavailable digitally, including the debut from Nancy Noise, Olefonken's spacey remix of Hubbabubbaklubb, and Steve Cobby's tropical-jazz remix of Penelope Antena's Tradewinds. Other highlights include Cantoma's 'Abando,' plus an incredible, modern interpretation of the 80's classic Southern Freeez from Paul Murphy. BALEARIC 3 captures the ineffable spirit of Ibiza - perfectly accompanying that unique moment when the golden sun meets the gleaming sea. It's destined to be a classic, go-to album you'll reach for again and again.
Silent Stars
12 May 17
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Review: Having spent much of 2016 focusing on the 20th anniversary of his impressive Freerange label, Jamie "Jimpster" Odell returns with his long-awaited sixth full-length, his first album since 2013's much admired Porchlight & Rocking Chairs. As you might expect, Silent Stars is a musically expansive affair, with the producer's usual floor-friendly deep house workouts being accompanied by tracks that pay homage to starry jazz-funk (brilliant opener "Migrations"), synthesizer-heavy new age ambient (the wonderful "Sylvanshine"), loose and languid Balearica (Jinadau collaboration "The Sun Comes Up"), Floating Points Ensemble style jazz ("Tau Tona"), modern soul ("Everytime") and even a touch of Osunlade style tribal bounce ("Silent Stars"). In other words, it's superb.

Afro Damba
MC 033
19 Jun 17
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Review: Irishman Peter Power has become quite a well known figure in Berlin since moving there several years ago and has been one of the figures behind some of the city's now legendary haunts like Kleine Reise (RIP) and the successful Loftus Hall/Bertrams: which has had a great run thus far too. Now the man behind the Ufordia imprint returns with his second outing on Thomas Von Party's Multi Culti, which itself has also made the move to the German capital. Power delves deep into the exotic here, borrowing heavily from African music and getting very atmospheric and esoteric in the process. The life affirming raindance of "Adama Waro" (original mix) is certainly geared for some moments of truth on the dancefloor. Equally spiritual is the traditional percussion based journey of "Mori Baka" (original mix). There's some great remixes by label manager Dreems and Bucharest duo Khidja: the latter's contributions which shine the most, particularly on their balearica infused/Second Summer of Love sounding remix of "Dansakoni".
No Stranger To Madness
16 Jun 17
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Review: Last year, Mat Chiavaroli popped up on Quintessentials with his first EP since 2012, a collection of tasty deep house cuts titled Swan. It turns out that the well-received EP was merely a taster for No Stranger To Madness, a debut album almost six years in the making. While there occasional downtempo moments - see the Balearic ambience of opener "Introduzione", gentle beatdown grooves of "Storia Losca" and smoky R&B shuffle of P-Lok hook-up "Latexxxnite Enemy" - for the most part the material is groovy and club-ready, with Chiavaroli drawing on all manner of classic U.S deep house tropes. Highlights include the sun-kissed jazziness of "Whoja Vu" and the Chez Damier style goodness of "Jeep Ridaz".
14 Jun 17
from $1.90
Played by: Ear Trumpet
Review: Over the course of the last decade, dub-soaked musical fusionist Lord Echo has delivered a string of fine releases, including two top-notch albums. Given his fine track record, it's perhaps unsurprising that Soundway has snapped up the Kiwi producer's third full-length excursion, Harmonies. It features contributions from a posse of guest collaborators - Tony Laing of Fat Freddy's Drop and regular studio buddy Mara TK included - and giddily infuses reggae and rocksteady with disco, Afro-soul, Afro-funk, Afro-beat, spiritual jazz and, more surprisingly, techno. It's a hugely vibrant and entertaining set, all told, offering a good balance between dancefloor vibrations and more laidback concoctions.
Fire In My Heart
ISLE 001
12 May 17
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Review: Escape From New York's 1984 cut "Fire In My Heart" has long been considered something of a Balearic classic. Original copies of the Rollerball Records release 12" are hard to come by, though, so this digital version is more than welcome. The original version - all slo-mo electro drums, rubbery dub bass, exotic melodies and intoxicating vocals - is joined by the now infamous Instrumental Dub version, which has been a staple in Balearic DJs' sets for more than 30 years. If that wasn't enough, there's also a chance to savour to woozy, dub-influenced synth-pop of original bonus cut "Won't Be Your Fool".
Brownswood Bubblers Twelve Part 1 (Gilles Peterson Presents)
BWOOD 0165
21 Apr 17
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Played by: Kenneth bager
Review: Brownswood Bubblers provides a platform for unsung heroes and emerging talent from the Worldwide underground. The series distills the stream of exciting new artists that have become semi-permanent fixtures in Gilles' playlists and DJ sets of late to create a suite of perfect bumps.The compilation is now in its twelfth release and there's some real gems on this edition: just some of the highlights are: the soothing inner city blues of Selbeyone's "Are You In Peace?", Kathy Hoskins and the legendary Paul Randolph's magical soul excursion "Could You Be Me?" (channeling the vibe of Roy Ayers' Ramp project) or The Pendletons with the wonderful "Gotta Get Out" which will give you your funky acid nu-jazz fix, for sure.
Running Mate
MC 032
27 Mar 17
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Review: Aussie balearic house larrikin Dreems returns on Montreal's Multi Culti: a label that he's actually co-owner of. The Running Mate EP like its name may suggest does indeed feature a bunch of great collaborations that result in some fantastic jams. First up he teams up with label boss Thomas Von Party on the title track where acid house meets the native sound of Down Under via its droney didgeridoo solos. He also teams up with Lithuanian-Israeli nomad DJ OI on a couple of tracks; our favourite was the latin infused slo-mo house epic "Kamp Krusty". Jagma is rumoured to be another Aussie who collaborates on home turf on "Bilbio Bush Baby" a dusty deep house track with esoteric elements.
Everytime I Think Of U
09 Jun 17
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Review: It's been relatively quiet from Trujillo recently, but now the Venezuelan producer casts out a transmission from his Berlin base to let everyone know that all is well and we can get back to the business of smooth grooving. "Everytime I Think Of U" speaks to the Balearic tendencies embedded in the producer's aesthetic, with a reflective vocal swirling amidst dreamy guitar chops and swooping synth warbles of a strictly blissed out nature. Telephones does a sterling job of remixing the original version into a warm and funky deep house jam peppered with organic delights. Kiss Me Again comes back to Apersonal Music, with an Afro-house-disco remix of "Everytime I Think Of U".
Excursion Africanism (Remixes)
07 Apr 17
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Review: Jose Manuel's recent album for Music For Dreams, the mighty Excursion Africanism, brought plenty of new and refreshing outernationalism to the electronic scene, and we are pretty convinced about the fact that this is some of the best material to surface out of the label in a long while. Much to our pleasure, this is a full-service remix package, all planned out with the care and attention to detail that it deserves. First up, Islandman reworks "Babylon" into the most seductive of Balearic cuts to have graced our charts as of late, Mehmet Aslan's version of "Voices Of Africa" is a moody yet effective little house roller, the Perca dub cut of "Excursion Africanism" ticks all the tribal boxes in fine style, while Leo Mas and Fabrice's own dub version of "Hungry" is the perfect bit of outsider dance experimentation to complement this magnificently subtle EP. Recommended!
It's Never Too Hot
ISLE 002
23 Jun 17
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Review: Emanating from late 80s Belgium, and originally released by seminal New Beat label Antler Records, here we have a welcome re-release of Chayell's 1987 classic "Beach", courtesy of Isle Of Jura. The tune has aged like a fine wine - a brooding slo-mo dark groove gives way to melancholic tropical synths and raunchy dialogue. For those that like the Miami-Vice-drug-bust-music element more, there's a dubby spaced out version on the digital flipside in shape of "Tropic". From the legendary Boccaccio nightclub to the Balearic Isles, this tune was a classic then and still is now.
LZD 061
05 May 17
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Played by: Chris Coco, Chugginedits
Review: Ever reliable Canadian producer Fred Everything makes his first appearance of 2017 with a selection of choice remixes of house classics for the Lazy Days label. On the A-side he's taking to Crazy P's "Like A Fool" a vocal and dub version and laying down a slick, bubbling groover that fits perfectly with the original's warm, disco-infused elements. On the flip, he takes on Roach Motel's "The Night" and makes it into a shimmering nocturnal cut peppered with impeccable synth lines and a sleazy vocal turn. By way of variety the final track sees Fred create a laid back Balearic, auto-tuned version of Franky Selector's "Wind Swept Dune".
Music For Mindfullness
ZZZCD 0138
23 Jun 17
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Played by: Kenneth bager
Review: Denmark's Kenneth Bager is a pioneer and record hunter in addition to label owner of Music For Dreams. Through his legendary Club Coma and subsequent stints on Danish National Radio, he has been on air for four decades promoting dance music. The label started out as a lounge/chill-out label but has since evolved into an entity with no musical boundaries. Bager has also organised the Music For Dreams Festival, in addition to his residency at Cafe Mambo in Ibiza: where 13 Music For Dreams Sunday Events were being held thus far. On the label's latest compilation, Music For Mindfulness, there's so much great music and it's hard to pick just a few highlights, but here goes: Copenhagen local The Swan And The Lake's "Clouds Over Osterbro" is absolutely lush and dreamy, Bager himself delivers an ambient instrumental mix of Ruf Dug's "Dominica!", while pianist Troels Hammer makes several appearances here, but "Cold Hawaii" is his finest moment.
Mr Mystery EP
LENG 035
19 May 17
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Review: Earthboogie - aka London soundsystem owners Izaak Gray and Nicola Robinson - make their wax debut with three raw, groove laden disco blends. Digging deep into both afrofunk and Italo roots, there's a universal musical language that grabs you physically across all three cuts. "Mr Mystery" sits between Booker T & The Mgs and Daniele Baldelli while "Route Ten To Interzone" is an energetic township jam with added synth sheen. Finally we're seduced by the Balearic weaves, ripples, twangs and horns of "The EB Theme". A rainbow of vibes from start to finish, this one's hard to put down.
Black Magic
BM 001
28 Apr 17
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Review: Alexander Pietnev aka Ponty Mython, is originally from Russia but is currently settled in Vilnius, Lithuania. He had his very first release in 2012 on Beats Delivery and gave a solid impression of what was to come. He went on with outings on Tusk Wax, Arma, Dirt Crew and Quintessentials. He inaugurates Burnin Music here with the cheeky indie house of "Black Magic" which calls to mind recent work by Moscoman or Red Axes. The blasphemy continues with the lo-fi house of "God Bless Atheism". The driving deep groove entitled "Secret Sunbath" has some summery and tropical retro vibes to balance out its tough Robert Hood style bass loop before he closes out the EP nicely with the esoteric afro house jam "Hidden Object".
Bambro Koyo Ganda
06 Jun 17
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Review: Earlier this year Si 'Bonobo' Green delivered his sixth album, Migration, which was his first full-length since 2013. It features 12 tracks that ruminate on the nature of personal identity and ideas of nationality, The LP includes songs inspired by international styles, one of which, "Bambro Koyo Ganda", has now been elected for release a single in it's own right. A seamless mix between fragile, touchy-feely house beats and traditional vocals courtesy of Innov Gnawa, the track will take you on an exotic emotional Journey. Also included is a new Analog version and an extra treat in the form of the clubbier non-album track, "Samurai".
Nuits Sonores / Nectarines
08 Dec 14
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Review: Sam Shepherd has long been a master of the kind of ultra-deep, rolling, soft focus deep house that raises the spirits and soothes the soul. Even so, there's something incredibly special about "Nuits Sonores", the lead track from this must-have EP. Based around a deep, tactile groove and blessed with rising synth solos, dancing acid lines and his usual fireside Rhodes antics, the track rises magnificently for 12 spellbinding minutes. As it progresses, further elements make their way into the mix, until it reaches the kind of organic deep house climax that makes even the grumpiest souls go weak at the knees. Flip for "Nectarines", the kind of loose-limbed fusion of deep house sassiness, Detroit techno electronics and fluid jazz drumming at which Shepherd has always excelled.
The Arc Of Tension
SVT 193
19 May 17
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Played by: BRUNO FROM IBIZA, ZippiE
Review: On his sixth album, Berlin based DJ, label owner and producer Oliver Koletzki presents his remarkable vision of contemporary electronic music. The Arc of Tension speaks to its listener as a singular, self contained work, which communicates by way of its natural flow and arc of suspense. The latter is mirrored not only in the multifarious narrative of the actual album, but can also be understood as evidence for its creator's long musical history. While Koletzki focused on a diverse range of vocal collaborations on his previous long players, he now moves on to a different form of storytelling, rooted in the quiet confidence of a veteran musician, as well as the hectic lifestyle of a globally in demand DJ. The Arc of Tension is the 'psychoanalytic' journey through the various continents of Oliver's consciousness.
Cantos De Vision
MC 030
23 Jan 17
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Review: Hailing from Ecuador, Nicola Cruz is a mysterious producer whose fine work tends to appear on esteemed label Multi Culti. Here is back with more occultish offerings (to the gods), four in fact, all of which will have you feeling light headed and possibly even aroused. Spiritually of course. "Tzantza" opens as nocturnal shuffle in the jungle, kind of like an organic body music. Elsewhere "Bruzo" mixes off-kilter rhythms and cut ups tribal chants, "Danza De Vision" is a livelier affair that's adds pan pipes and electronic bleeps to the mix and "Rio Branco" is a linear fusion of minimal percussion.
Speicher 96
09 Jun 17
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Review: Christian Nielsen is a surprising choice for the Kompakt Extra series: the label would say so themselves!. But they love to surprise your ears and have enjoyed, for some time, his 'outsider approach' to music. In particular with "Hard Times", a peak time melodic monster that bridges the right transitions for when you need it. ?Belgian artist, the Hotflush and Afterlife affiliated Locked Groove presents "Dawn", one of those magical tunes that loop along but evolve with every listen. Intricate drums balance well with lush, minimalistic melodies. The Speicher series is approaching its 100th release. Where it goes, only they know, so savour the flavour while it lasts. ?

FPCD 013
28 Apr 17
from $1.90
Played by: Chris Coco
Review: Even Brenden's CHMMR project is giving the Scandinavian scene a renewed sense of freshness and subtlety when it comes to hazy, downtempo beats. The producer is back on Norway's sublime Full Pupp imprint with a gorgeous LP that spans just about ever corner of the electronic dance framework that resides left of field. Auto is a gorgeous piece of work, from its slow, lingering sense of euphoria that spans the entirety of its ten tracks, to the elegance and precision of the melodies themselves. Balearic might be one way to describe this colourful composition of sounds, but we believe that it goes much further than that, and actually resides in the enlarged house domain. This, of course, is for your slower, and perhaps earlier sets...and by early we mean early hours.
05 May 17
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Review: Liverpudlian Matthew Barnes follows up his 2013 long player Engravings with this evocative album that encapsulates worlds both organic and synthetic. "Like many, with all that's been going on since I started making the record, I've struggled to see any kind of light at the end of the tunnel," says Barnes, "so I realised there's some sort of power in trying to create our own instead". Lead single "The Highest Flood" utilises classical instruments and chopped up choir samples in its brooding bittersweet arrangement over fiercely retrained beats. "Arms Out" is reminiscent of Dead Can Dance with its tabla drums and exotic instrumentation taking into deep esoteric territory while honorable mentions also to the industrial edged junkyard groove of "Exalter" and the dynamic closer "Knife Edge" which is the album at its most brooding.
Superbacana EP
SCEP 479
23 Jun 17
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Review: S-tone Inc. returns with Superbacana and contains four tracks with a funky Brazilian flavour. Inspired by the Black Rio sound that represents the encounter between samba and American soul funk music since the '70s. The title track is a mid-tempo jam that could be considered 'soul: brazuca style' but with a modern touch. That one features the spaced-out vocals of Toco, Paola Silva and Luzia Dvorek. Fabrizio Bernasconi also plays a fantastic groovy solo on Fender Rhodes too. There's also a handy dub version of this track with an outstanding Marquinho Baboo performance on percussion. Then "Zona Norte" with Paola Silva on backing vocals is a funky-disco jam and as the title suggests: it names all the main quarters of the north side of Rio de Janeiro and is a perfect example of the Brazilian attitude to disco-funk. "Zuzu" closes the record and is inspired by Guimaraes' disco groove. Featuring 4Maree: a vocal ensemble from Sao Paulo that includes Bruno Morais and Kika with Toco and Luzia Dvorek. Bass, guitar and Wurlitzer are all performed by Stefano Tirone, who's also responsible for this EP's recording and production process and is the writer with Toco of the three tracks
16 Jun 17
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Review: Worlds collide as the iconic Penguin Cafe and Japanese producer Cornelius join forces for this four-track Umbrella EP. The pair crossed paths in 2012 when Penguin Cafe were touring in Japan and Cornelius' band Saryu Saryu supported them in Tokyo. Since then they decided to seize the opportunity to work together and have reworked and reimagined existing tracks of their own, alongside two new Penguin Cafe songs. penguin Cafe was founded by Arthur Jeffes in 2009, bringing together a diverse and disparate group of musicians from the likes of Suede, Gorillaz and Razorlight, initially to perform his father Simon Jeffes' legacy of world renowned Penguin Cafe Orchestra music, ten years after his untimely death in 1997. Arthur, a composer in his own right, quickly began to create new and unique genre-defying music, with the spellbinding philosophy of the Penguin Cafe always in his mind. The project has evolved into something at the hands of Arthur who utilises many different instruments and influences including elements of African, Venezuelan, Brazilian, bluegrass, classical, avant-garde and minimalist music.
Find Your Rhythm
RGRV 019
17 Mar 17
from $1.90
Review: Three years on from their last full-length excursion - the fine Borough 2 Borough on Delusions of Grandeur - Craig Smith and The Revenge return with their third 6th Borough Project album. Predictably, it's a fine set, with the duo tweaking their now familiar blueprint - think sample heavy, Balearic-minded deep house built around killer grooves and impeccable production - to guarantee a slightly more eclectic listening experience. So, while there are moments of locked-in dancefloor hypnotism - see "The Weight" and acid-gospel thump of "Tainted Dub" - they're accompanied by trips into wide-eyed, loved-up two-step territory (brilliant closer "Back Where It All Began"), seductive, synth-heavy dreaminess (Paul Joseph hook-up "Find Your Rhythm"), intoxicating downtempo chuggers ("Someday"), and much more besides.
12 Dec 16
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Review: Mysterious Russian producer A Vision Of Panorama returns with a brilliant full length release fooling up great efforts on Music For Dreams and Aficionado. Expect lo-slung, retro flavoured nu-disco with a brazen display of Balearic flair. Starting out with "Back To Elba", a groove which is cool as a cucumber, there's more mellow dancefloor stuff such as on "Barbados" or "I Saw The Wind" which call to mind Max Essa, Fabrizio Mammarella or even Lauer at times. Combined with sombre yet romantic pop ballads such as the haunting "Duality" featuring some gorgeous vocals or "Surf Blue" calling to mind Gaussian Curve: this is a truly wonderful album.
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