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Customer Review

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Since I left you, 7 Mar. 2007
This review is from: Since I Left You (Audio CD)
The Avalanches are a DJ's dream come true -- six Aussies who took hundreds of sound snatches, and wove together a wildly playful kind of electronica. Their first (and so far, only) album, "Since I Left You," is a tangle of the delicate, the weird, and the incredibly danceable.

It kicks off with the sparkling "Since I Left You," but the best is yet to come. The Avalanches manage to attain both a typical "sound" and plenty of originality in their songs, such as the bleeps-and-horns "Different Feeling," the knob-twiddling basslines of "Radio," the sputtery dance number "Live At Dominoes," and the interference-laden Rastafarian rock "Flight Tonight."

But with all the dance tracks, the Avalanches have their softer side: the delicately upbeat "Two Hearts in 3/4 Time," the swaying "Electricity," the brief and staticky "Pablo's Cruise," and the gauzy, multilayered "Etoh." It rounds off with the majestically languid "Extra Kings," which has a long sweep of distortion and chaos in the middle.

It's almost too easy to dance to the Avalanches. They take almost a thousand mismatched sounds and manage to cobble them into some really brilliant music. What's especially brilliant is the way these patchwork dance tracks manage to find solid, simple grooves, and stick to them right to the end.

"Since I Left You" isn't perfect -- at times the fragments don't quite mesh together. Some parts are pure chaos, but oddly they don't mar the overall sound; instead, they enhance it. Scattered in amongst the melody is the sound of video games, horses, discos, golf instructions, flutes, pianos, and seagulls -- it adds a strangely whimsical sound to the dance music.

The vocals tend to be samples repeated over and over, just under the surface of the music. Among the vocal snatches are the ethereal "Since I left you/I found the world so new!" or determined "Book of flight tonight." So the lyrics are often quite simple, except for the hysterically funny "Frontier Psychiatrist" ("Lie down on the couch, what does that mean?/You're a nut! You're crazy in the coconut!").

"Since I Left You" takes hundreds of random sound fragments, and turns them into a mosaic. Fun, playful, fast and hypnotically bizarre, this is a must have for fans of quirky music.
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