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Tuesday, 15 December 2009

Musick's Top 20 albums: 9

Dirty Projectors – Bitte Orca

Not many albums avoid pigeon-holing as keenly as Bitte Orca. Like the album’s title, things seem to have been thrown together because frontman Dave Longstreth thought they might sound good together and it’s to his infinite credit that they nearly always do. So, we get modern-day R&B as performed by four white folk from Brooklyn in the shape of ‘Stillness Is The Move’, cinematic chamber pop (‘Two Doves’) and discordant guitar noise peppering an otherwise sombre harmony-lead ditty (‘Temecula Sunrise’). Unlike most albums that try everything but master nothing, Bitte Orca works because the ideas never swallow the songs. ‘Useful Chamber’ may have undulating keyboard riffs and strange, backward noises, but it also has a brilliant melody and somehow all the fragments are held together. Plus, they’re Bjork’s favourite band, so, you know, it stands to reason that they’re amazing.

Key track: ‘Stillness Is The Move’

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