• slugabed Inherit the Earth (CD, £11.50)

    label: Anticon

    It's going on four years since a Slugabed album, but the man's been busy - running a label, working with others, and making a two scrapped LPs' worth of cuts similar in vibe to the hyper-pop of 2014's Coolest EP - happier, forest-y, more "plinky-plonky". Which isn't to say Inherit the Earth is bereft of lyrics or even lighter moments. "Gold" plays like a trippy merger of Y2K pop and contemporary alt-R&B thanks, in part, to vocal and production contributions from Hairy Hands and Peter Lyons. Album ender "Earth Is Gone Sorry" is also less bleak than the name would suggest - Lum's soulful voice and the shimmering interstellar textures imply the universe may be better off without our planet making a mess of things. And for all of the slasher-flick effects of "Very Serious Puzzle" and speaker-blowing bass of "Infinite Wave," there is also the thick, glorious funk of "Time 2 Let It Go" and silly digitised brass of "Feeding Time". Tracks: The Right Person To Talk To / Stupid Earth / Infinite Wave / Levitating Above My Own Useless Body / Gold (ft. Hairy Hands & Peter Lyons) / Very Serious Puzzle / Time 2 Let It Go / A Thousand Tiny Hands / Perfect Earth / Feeding Time / Virtuous Circle / Earth Is Gone Sorry (ft. Lum)

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