Up, Bustle and Out

Soliloquy

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    7
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AllMusic Review by

Up, Bustle & Out's albums have always incorporated Latin elements into their funk/dub/hip-hop matrix, but on Soliloquy the band takes a deeper dive into genuine Spanish sounds, along with Gypsy violins, North African and Middle Eastern vocals (some recorded specifically for the album, others sampled or re-appropriated from other sessions), and glitchy-sounding turntablism, all of it swathed in miles and miles of space-defining dubwise effects. This is the kind of music that constantly flirts with arty self-indulgence, and indeed the "Theme" that opens the album seems more like a half-finished musical thought, while "Luminous Fragments" is more fragmentary than luminous. But Up, Bustle & Out's particular genius is their general ability to rein in those tendencies just enough to keep things both coherent and interesting, and that's exactly what they do on stellar material like the lazily funky "Littered Dreams," the weird Spanish/Middle Eastern fusion number "Waterfalls of Gold," and the brilliant "Absent Crowds," which features lovely female vocals, weird violin, and a dreamy, bass-heavy groove. The bonus dub tracks that close out the album are among the best on the program, in particular the wonderful dub version of "Waterfalls of Gold."

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