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4.4 out of 5 stars
Sbtrkt
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41 of 44 people found the following review helpful
Though he has already turned out a number of singles and remixes - many of which were for some very high-profile acts - this record marks SBTRKT's first long-playing effort (under this name, anyway - Aaron Jerome is another story). So was it worth the wait?

The answer is an unreserved yes. Much as Caribou did last year with Swim, SBTRKT manages to perfectly pitch his electronic offerings between the cerebral and the visceral. The tracks herein are far from cookie-cutter pap with identikit beats, yet they do not suffer from the smugness that dance music can all-too-easily adopt when it tries to get smart.

Instead, SBTRKT keeps his eyes on the dancefloor and his ears on the beat. The rhythms - whether they be built on dubby throbs or crisp snares - are all direct, purposeful and aimed at the part of the brain that sets toes to tapping and buttocks to jiggling. Clever it may be, but this is party music first and foremost.

As well as his knack for satisfying and catchy rhythms, SBTRKT's choice of collaborators has also served him well. Sampha contributes some very agreeable vocals to a number of the tracks - complementing the music without dominating it - whilst Little Dragon's sassy turn on `Wildfire' is a definite album highlight.

All in all, this is an assured release that should secure itself a place in many Album Of The Year round-ups come December. For those who like their electronica to exercise brain and booty in equal measure, it is a must-buy record.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 14 January 2012
every track on this album leaves me high. each track stands out on it's own and i wish the album was longer. genius work by sbtrkt and sampha - what a voice:)
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 10 November 2013
Sbtrkt's album is the opposite of a "grower". On first few listens, it seems very crisp, cool and contemporary. After a while, however, most of the songs begin to lose that appeal, leaving only Wildfire and Pharaohs as genuinely good tunes. Part of the problem for me is Sampha's "Marmite" vocals - you will either love them or hate them. Purely a matter of personal taste, but I find his voice rather monotonous and that contiunial tone of barely-suppressed longing rather tiring. It's not that he's bad, just that I can't identify with it. Others will love it, as some of the other reviews make clear. I suggest you try a couple of the tracks with Sampha's singing (like Hold On) before plunging in with the whole album.
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on 22 October 2011
I bought the digital download of this album so that I got the bonus track. Overall I would say i'm pretty pleased with my purchase. I spend a lot of time driving and love listening to music in my car. As a fan of electronica, SBTRKT's album was a good blend of electronic vibes, deep bass but also has a pop feel about it. It's kind of near the crossover point to commercial music. I couple of tracks stood out for me and i'd recommend the download as the bonus track, 'Living like I Do', is one of my favourites. One thing I would say is invest in a decent sound system/stereo or you won't hear the full spectrum of sound on this album. Overall a good album for all electronica fans and those wishing to expand their musical horizons.
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on 19 September 2011
I wasn't aware of this artict at all, as this particular style of music isn't what I am used listen to, but I have to say after listening to the album samples several times on the MP3 playlist; I was compelled to purchase. Every single track is an extension of the brilliance and creativity of the artist. What I love about this album is the range of sounds and various through its entirety.
I look forward to listening out for what new creations Sbtrkt have lined up in the future.
For anyone who appreciates quality production, experimental sound and rythmic genius; this is must buy, I implore you to purchase if you haven't already do so.
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on 7 April 2012
Nice sound. Nice rhythms and contrasts that fit together. To be honest I am not the biggest fan of Sampha's vocals but I think that is my personal taste and appreciate his talent. There are many other female singers on the album who I much prefer. Sometimes it is a bit too clean and "over-produced" and so I hope Aaron can follow this with a live album. Altogether, I like it - Pharaohs, Wildfire are top of my playlist. There are also some interesting remixes to be found and would recommend seeing them live if, like me, you enjoy this albulm.
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8 of 11 people found the following review helpful
TOP 500 REVIEWERon 27 June 2011
The masked man that is SBTRKT has released many EP's and remixed a lot of other artists but this is his first album proper. It's a catchy and rewarding listen with some excellent guest vocals on top of the beats and layered sounds.

The main guest vocals are provided by Sampha, Jeesie Ware and Little Dragon and they have been given quite a bunch of lyrics to bring alive - Sampha does a fantastic job on Hold On and Trials of the Past which deliver fantastic lyrics hauntingly delivered on top of memorable layers of dance beats and various electronics. Little Dragon is not left behind though as Wildfire demonstrates some skill. Jessie Ware is used very well on Right Thing To Do which seems to be at home on the dance floor or testing the bass of a car stereo equally. Pharaohs though is a really killer track. Vocals by Roses Gabor add much to this track that sounds airy, catchy and very danceable. This deserves to be played lots. The whole piece contains lots of tracks that will linger in the memory and will provide the soundtrack to many parties this summer.

Much mention above has been made of the guests but its the main man here who comes out on top. Mixing this together to deliver an album that feels of one piece and yet delivers many varieties of dance. Listen to the way that Never Never starts life like a clockwork soldier and finally delivers a soulful dance number. The only weakness could be the lack of an out and out anthem. But this is highly recommended as it delivers great danceable tracks as well as providing the launching pad for a new talent.
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on 12 February 2013
I only buy albums if I've spent a few weeks trawling their videos on youtube.
Seeing sbtrkt at Bestival last year was awesome, would highly recommend. Especially Wildfire and Hold on.
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on 4 March 2013
Great album. I went back to it after buying the Jessie Ware one which I thought was one of the best of 2012. And now its been out for a while you can't go wrong for five or six pounds.
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on 7 July 2013
Brilliant songs and great production, one of the most original and inventive albums of the last few years. This guy should be headlining a Glasto stage not Chase and f%$^&*g Status!
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