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dean blunt & inga copeland (hype williams) - Black Is Beautiful
Hype Williams' Dean Blunt and Inga Copeland have released a lot of albums in the last couple of years - few of them better than their untitled 2010 effort for Carnivals - so you could be forgiven for not keeping count. But the truth is that this record, their first for Kode9's Hyperdub, is one of their most haunting and vividly realised to date. Copeland's sighing vocals are worth the price of admission alone, particularly when riding DIY footwork rhythms ('12') or or playing at pure pop ('2'). Apart from opener '(Venice Dreamway)', the track titles are all numeric, so we'll spare you any more specific references - suffice to say that across the album you get plenty of creepy keyboard reveries, warped vocal loops, miasmic synths and sub-low baselines. It's Hype Williams, you kind of have some idea of what you're going to get beforehand, but they generate such a mystifying, almost alchemical blend of sounds that they just get us every single time. It's hard to isolate what it is exactly, but lurking somewhere behind their broken keyboards and tape decks is something profoundly moving and beautiful.