Thoughts for Tonight: Broadcast & The Focus Group

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Broadcast, have been around since 1995, having formed in Birmingham, Great Britain. Broadcast are signed to Warp Records; a record label, that acts as a who’s who of each important name in electronic music since the labels formation in 1989. Warp have hosted, amongst others, Andrew Weatherall (under Sabres of Paradise guise), Aphex Twin, Squarepusher, Nightmares on Wax, !!!, and Richie Hawtin.

Broadcast have come together with Julian House, a.k.a. The Focus Group. His influence of English folklore, and eerie vintage sound complements Broadcast perfectly, and their partnership here could not be better placed. Indeed Britishness transpires this abstract collection of sound. I See, So I see So, like the similarly-phrased tongue-twister, paints a seaside landscape of fairgrounds, seagulls, and ice cream.

Most songs on this album subconsciously limit themselves around the two minute mark; with acoustic loops, a-capella breaks, warming but distorted vocals, and dissonant samples that fall out of time, all within any chosen song. Each song plays like a jam where midway through, each band member gets bored and changes focus and direction; on paper, this seems at best, an exercise, and at worst, an evocatively, nauseating, mismatch of sound. The delivery though; of electronica, and sample-splicing, with 60s, guitar psychedelica, is excellently crafted, and incredulously carried off.

Broadcast and The Focus Group Investigate Witch Cults of the Radio Age, is a warm touch of experimental sound, a contrast with the majority of much darker sounding psychedelia that is ubiquitous with some music of the moment. Its a refreshing full-length; different in itself, with its structure, and for that reason it may not have a rigidity that some need. Despite the disjointed nature of this album, they have created a fantastic release. The album will float by in no time, and a wonderful dream will be all that’s left.

The Be Colony
Royal Chant

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