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lea and russ return, new label, new elements but still blues control at heart. 'valley tangents' finds a home in the ever deepening stable at drag city and it's the duo's most expansive, varied and clearest vision yet. just off their collaboration and subsequent tour with laraaji, the pair have rolled out an album that throws new age, jazz, lounge and experimental touchstones in the mixer and comes out with such a seamless digestion of the pieces that it instantly feels like all of them and none of them at once. surprisingly, for an album that feels so modern and strangely bubbling with urban concrete in its veins, the album was inspired by a move to the open airs of coopersburg, pa. the country life seems to have done the pair good, and as mismatched as those aforementioned ingredients might sound, the album is nothing short of inspired... invigorated even. its blissful, but never listless. it zones out into swirling tangents but seems to know its way home. it has groove but never meanders. its a perfect soundtrack to the coming swelter of summer, just in time to cool the dizzying din of too much cracked pavement like the first grasp of condensation on the glass. you'd do well to get this in your hands as soon as its available and then spend some time in a lawn chair, headphones on and lost in the hazy corona of blues control's glow.
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