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on 18 December 2012
I have been listening to this album for week now and it has grown on me and continues to grow as it presumably did on the judges for the Mercury prize. It is difficult to compare it to any other single artist or band - Radiohead have been quoted but really the only similarity I can see to Oxford's finest is the Selway'esque drumming on some tracks - but it is definitely not a Greenwood/Ed O'Brien style guitar album. The terrific ensemble singing reminds me of Fleet Foxes (who I don't particularly like) and the solo singing (and phrasing) of Billy Corgan, who I do, and even Marcus Mumford. The lyrics are consistently interesting (and included in full on the sleeve notes) and I particularly liked the idea (and execution) of the 3 unnamed one minute "palate cleansers" dotted amongst the 10 longer tracks. So my advice is not to buy this looking for something that sounds like someone else but buy it because it is different - a very rare thing in this day and age and something to be celebrated!
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on 10 September 2015
Great album, nothing to add to all the other 5 star reviews.

However, this is about the LP version, if anyone is interested. You might have read how this is pressed on white vinyl! But, in MHO the white vinyl is a nuisance as:
1) You can't see where the next track starts
2) If there's a scratch you can't see where it is (and if its maybe just a bit of dirt)

Unfortunately my copy seemed to be a bad pressing on side two of the LP (I don't know if others had similar experiences), which sadly spoiled some of the listening experience, especially the fantastic last track "Taro". It made me remember how buying an LP back in the 70s was always filled with dread, would the LP be 'well pressed', or would you be obliged to wander back to the shop to argue your point about pops and cracks (over the counter in WH Smiths)!

Of course there's no hidden last track either!
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on 10 November 2012
To say this is original,is like saying that breathing helps you survive,for this is astonishingly polisshed and crafted.the music not only pushes boundssries-it smashes them through to kingdom come.
I had only heard of this band by word of mouth,and it was only when i heard that they had been nominated for the Mercury Music awards,which they won,they i investigated further,and boy,am i glad that i did,for this is music of the future.
CD (48.46)
1......Intro(2.37) is a slow paced song which serves up the perfect start for the album.
2......Tesselatea short song with strange lyrics and effects in falsetto.
3......Breezeblocks(3.01) a magnificent piece of modern music.
4......Something good magnificent.(2.18).
5......Dissolve me....guess what its excellent(1.170
10......Taro (3.50)
11.....Hand made(3.39)+ (0.53)+(4.09)+(12.41)

DVD(59.20)(Absolutely no worries)
a documentary about the band with live tracks

ps the cd player says 13 tracks
the booklet says 11
the cover says 10
With the confusion of track titles my anotations may be a little awry,i am partially sighted,and may have got some things wrong,but where i am right is that this is a magnificent triumph.
BEWARE!!! There are hidden tracks oi tnis album,see if you can find them!!!!!


CD .....48.46



VALUE FOR MONEY......£££££

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on 23 August 2013
This album is a must buy this year.
Alt-J's recent success is by no means overrated. Their songs are great from first listen.
Like many people, my only experience of Alt-J's music prior to buying the album was their single 'Breezeblocks' and 'Fitzpleasure'. I bought the album on my opinion of these two songs and although the songs are not all in the same style as them, I still thoroughly enjoy most of the album. The fact it includes and intro and 'interludes' makes you feel like you are listening to them live. The songs flow fluidly together and this seamless aspect makes it hard not to listen to the whole album all the way through every time you play it.

The songs are as follows:
1. Intro....Starts with a piano and slowly builds up into a whole song which makes you want to close your eyes and feel like you are floating on a cloud
2. Interlude I.....not labelled as a track on the CD but it is on there. It is acapella and the harmonies give you chills
3. Tessellate.....This song is slowpaced and one of my favorites. The moment when he sings 'lets tesssellate' and the music goes silent is another moment which gives me chills
4. Breezeblocks.....This is one of the singles for a reason. It is catchy and odd with the lyrics. The 'lalala' adds another texture to the music. Breezeblocks is a song that unexpectedly makes you want to dance.
5. Interlude II.....Nice bit of acoustic guitar with calming background sounds of vehicles and talking
6. Something Good.....Has a different feel in all the parts of the song. Each section is completely different yet they blend together sublimely and without you getting jolted by the sudden change.
7. Dissolve Me.....Bass coming in at certain points makes this song a real pleasure to listen to.
8. Matilda.....possibly my least favorite song, this one is a bit whiny, all the same it is catchy!
9. Ms.....This is the most chilled song. Its the kind of song that makes me think of someone with their eyes closed leaning against a car window listening to music with the raindrops running down the window.
10. Fitzpleasure.....This is one of the stand-out songs, with indecipherable lyrics and strong bass it never fails to be interesting
11. Interlude III.....calming lyricless singing with a piano underneath
12. Blood Flood.....Starts with a chilling moment with children speaking. Never fails to make me breath with song lyrics
13. Taro.....This is my favorite song on the album, has an amazing part when it breaks down into an eastern sounding melody.
14. Handmade.....Not sure whether this is the same track as Taro but it was certainly a nice surprise to feel like there was some kind of unlabelled 'bonus' track

The oddness of the lyrics plus the fact that you cannot even tell what they are saying part of the time makes this album and band even more charming.
Although I normally go for upbeat music, Alt-J doesn't fail to keep my attention for the entire almost 50 minutes of music.
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on 11 December 2017
I love this album and have done so ever since it came out. The vinyl sounds much better than the CD. That's all I can say. I have learned that everyone's music tastes are different, and these days you can try out albums before buying them. If you don't like it then don't buy it, and don't leave stupid reviews showing your utter lack of taste in music (He He He)
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on 24 May 2013
Well I came pretty late to the Alt-J party and I'm sorry I didn't investigate them earlier. Seriously, when I listened to the whole thing, I knew I'd heard the sound of the future. It's overflowing with ideas, enigmatic lyrics and beautiful melodies, and weird bits where the guy's just playing with his voice (which is amazing, incidentally - so weird you'd think he'd sound annoying, but somehow doesn't!). It's so damn confident, so distinctive and so refreshingly inventive. There's not a boring moment, and the interludes are a great idea - they break up the album in an interesting way, are food for the ears in themselves, and tie the thing together as an actual album rather than a collection of songs for people to download and forget about. I can't decide if Dissolve Me or Fitzpleasure is my favourite, but every song is fantastic. I have no idea what half the lyrics are meant to be about; they stay just on the intriguing side of unusual rather than straying into pretentious nonsense. Finally, I always thought the artwork was oil on its way to emulsifying or something, but have just discovered it's three photos of the Ganges overlaid to expose the different colours, which I think must qualify for one of the best album cover ideas of all time.
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on 27 January 2013
This album is an absolute masterpiece. There aren't many bands that can produce such a wide range of music styles in one album and have such a strong common link between all the songs which can only be defined as "very alt-J". From the serene Latin feel of 'Something Good' to the gritty, crunchy bass and somber lyrics in Fitzpleasure, this album takes you on such an exciting journey, and yet all the time you feel tied to the central theme of it all. Don't even think about skipping any songs, or shuffling - though unimportant in name, the intro and interludes give the album fantastic coherence, and each interlude is a song in it's own right. The beautiful vocals and delicious harmonies in interlude 1 are haunting and overwhelm the listener with the distinctive 'alt-J' voice. This album definitely deserves the Mercury Award, and I'm looking forward to all future projects from them!
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on 12 March 2013
I was introduced to Alt-J by a friend. At first I was apprehensive, but I was eventually won round enough to buy the album.

It has rocketed to the top of my most played list. And that's the entire album - every track.

There's something about the finished album that just works. It's simply wonderful to listen to. Fitzpleasure and Dissolve Me are definitely my favourite tracks. Normally I hate listening to singers who don't enunciate, but I think that his voice really works, even if you have to listen to the album 10 times to understand a word that he's saying. The music develops the more you listen to it - I initially thought that Fitzpleasure was just a harsh and bassy song, but once I finally listened to the words and twigged the context, it became massively creepy and incredibly moving. The group harmonies are flawless and there are real transitions in each song. They aren't afraid to play with the structure of their songs and this allows for spine tingling crescendos that completely alter the feel of the music.

It's amazing how quickly they've risen from being completely unknown to being played in the background of every vaguely perilous moment in any Channel 4 documentary / reality programme. The Mercury prize can't have hurt, but they definitely deserved it.
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on 18 August 2017
A sonic masterpiece. Crank up the volume and be blown away.
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on 21 September 2013
This album totally floored me with it's originality, uniqueness, and simply wonderful sounds. It feels like every note was researched and pieced together to produce a technically stunning array of songs that are each unique, interesting, beautiful and quite different to anything I've heard. You may pick up on influences or echoes of others, but the way those influences have been brought together to create this unique style is truly inspiring.

Do yourself a favour...buy this, sit back in a dark room, relax and let the music take you somewhere special.

For a first album I cannot believe how accomplished and perfect the sound is. I cannot wait for more.

I will normally buy an album based on a single song I liked. If I can find one or two other good tracks on the album that are of similar quality, I am happy. This album was like an explosion of songs that seemed to improve even more on the last. The more I listen to it, the more I hear and the more wonderful it becomes.

I may sound over the top in my praise, but I feared that man may have exhausted all truly original paths in music, until I heard this! Like I say, it genuinely bowled me over and floored me!
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