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808 State Outpost Transmission

Where does techno go after it's been framed and hung in a gallery? As with their last release (1996's Don Solaris), Manchester's modern masters lay it on thick, this time with a fresh palette. There are a few familiar notes and devices, such as employing multiple guest vocalists like Simian, Elbow and Alabama 3, all of whom produce great results. But it's drastic shape-shifts and an increased intensity that mark 808's return. The tone of "Soulflex," for example, glides effortlessly between martyr and menace. Can a Vatican commission be far behind?

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