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Labradford are a very interesting band. Their music is entirely about texture. It's about how the sounds flow across, against, and through one another. It makes for some interesting introspective listening.

Or rather, it would if it were not for the thing that i hate about Labradford: they torture droids.

I'm not sure, but i am fairly certain of it. They obviously bought a whole slew of Astro Droids (like R2 D2) off of some Jawas, and they torture them. Labradford sit and play their music, and somewhere in the foreground are little bleeps and bloops and blips of some poor robot experienceing extreme pain.

Okay, i am not sure if that's what they are really doing, but that's what it sounds like. Labradford make these really beautiful soundscapes, and then destroy the mood and enjoyability of it with their painful wierd electronic sounds. If i could remove those sounds, Labradford would be AMAZING!

But as it stands i have to ask: WHAT THE HECK ARE THEY THINKING???????

The music is so beautiful, why destroy it with those wierd sounds??? Why, oh why, do they do that?

This is the second album that they have done this to me on. They even did it live. Which makes sense, i suppose, if they consider it to be a part of their songs. Whatever. I just wish that they would make the hurting stop! For my sake, and for R2-D2's.

That said, they really only do the whole "droid torture" thing on one song of this album. It's the first song, and unfortunately it takes up half of the CD. This track, called Twenty exists for about 12 minutes or so of great melodic texture. Bass riffs thunder off of lightly played keys. I listen to it, and lose myself in the wonderful melodic texture. Then, suddenly, there is a loud "bleep bloop blip blip" (translation: "Help, i am just a harmless droid! Don't hurt me!") and i am shocked and somewhat frightened. This harsh electronic sound that Labradford layer in front of this song just, well, it sets my hair on end.

After they work it out of their system, Labradford proceed to make another 17 minutes of that beautiful textured music. In particular, track 3 David starts off with luscious keys and meandering bass, before adding extreme tape hiss into the mix. The hiss overwhelms the bass, and then is swallowed by syncopated electronic beats. It's a really nice effect -- an altogether more pleasant use of the "noise" aesthetic than on Twenty. After that, the entire album lightly fades out, leaving you nice and calmed. Well, after a few listens it does. The first few times i kept expecting "droid torture" noises to creep back into the mix, and that kept me on edge.

So there you go -- Labradford have a lot of talent and skill at crafting wonderfully textured melodies, but they make some very odd choices as to some of those textures. Disturbing choices. But maybe it's just me who is bothered by this? I dunno.....

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