Milk & Honey

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Aromabar's Milk & Honey is a respectable record to file alongside Faithless and Portishead as neo-singer/songwriter pop, slightly clubby but mostly downtempo. Vocalist Karin Steger has an interesting songwriting sense, and her voice is quite bewitching (it's often doubled for an echo effect). Guest Leonard Richards actually takes the vocal highlight, "Come Back," featuring electric piano and softly plucked guitar over stop-time beats. And later in the album, Aromabar draws on much more than the usual coffee table fare: "All I Want" draws on contemporary R&B, while "Cupid & Orlando" is a nice pastiche of 2-step garage. The production isn't overwhelming or revolutionary, but Milk & Honey is a deft marriage of contemporary arrangements with classicist pop sensibilities.

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