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My Robot Friend Soft-Core

On his third full-length album, Soft-Core, the imaginative Howard Robot of New York-based My Robot Friend has retrofitted his usual light-dappled indie-electronic milieu with a surprisingly simpatico cast of diverse musical characters. A cover of Luna's "23 Minutes in Brussels" finds Robot alone in his multi-textured electronic element, while "The Short Game," a clicking, infectious collaboration with Germany's Zombie Nation, draws comparisons to Hot Chip with its soft mood and sweetly aching vocals. The bot waltzes through a dream world of '80s-reminiscent synth-pop with Yaz's Alison Moyet on "Waiting" and into the wistful, spacious "Astronaut" with dream-pop veteran Dean Wareham. Add to this mix a few starry-eyed collaborations with Outputmessage, and it’s a very pretty machine this robot has created.

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