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Matthew Herbert Big Band There’s Me and There’s You

Billed as a jazzy assemblage of protest songs, Matthew Herbert’s latest is a hybrid. Working again with his Big Band, the decorated British producer, avant-jazz arranger, and field recorder (samples here include condoms dragged, nails hammered, matches struck, and a host of other sonic clippings culled from the House of Parliament and Mickey D‘s) has crafted a period-pop album capable of doubling as a musical for people that hate show tunes. The result is anything but snoozy. Herbert’s horn arrangements are particularly kinetic on songs like “Battery” and “The Yesness,” brass lending a layer of bombast that counteracts the more subversive elements spelled out by Eska Mtungwazi’s vibrant, smokebomb vocals.

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