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the focus group - Sketches and Spells
**Long awaited edition of The Focus Group's amazing psychedelic debut from 2004** Along with Belbury Poly's more playful incidentals and song structures on 'The Willows', Julian House set the context for Ghost Box somewhere far stranger, psilocybic and unresolved with 'Sketches And Spells'. Like his later, cult-classic album with Broadcast 'Investigate Witch Cults Of The Radio Age', this album is a kaleidoscopic listening experience, like imbibing the cumulative sound of a stack of library records who've become fused together in an ancient garden shed - if that was at all possible. House plunges us into an unexplained and inexplicable world of reversed oboes, bubbling sitars, abstract jazz motifs, alarming incidentals and chariactured themes, boinging from one to the next with mystical connections and misty haze of synths. The effect is deeply intoxicating and quite unlike anything we can think of. There are precedents of course in the avant-garde for collage-based works, but there's something charmingly poppy and steered by a graphic designers sense of arrangement at play. Check the samples and get smitten. Highly recommended!