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ARTIST
TITLE
Divisions
FORMAT
CD

LABEL
CATALOG #
VG 021CD VG 021CD
GENRE
RELEASE DATE
3/31/2015

Hot on the heels of their critically revered 2014 krautrock-meets-Afrobeat longplayer Regions (VG 007CD/LP), Ellis Island Sound's Pete Astor and David Sheppard return with a seven-track mini-album. Inspired by the main flow of Regions, Divisions is another fertile marriage between motorik Mitteleuropa pulse and subtropical guitar- and percussion-textures. This time, however, the emphasis is less on throbbing, NEU!-beat-propelled blow-outs and more on intricate, highly melodic arrangements for guitars, keyboards, and tuned percussion, with a spacious sound palette propelled by polyrhythmic marimbas and xylophones and layered with infectious lead lines and choral vocals -- the latter sourced by Astor and Sheppard from dusty archive recordings and manipulated into subtle, stirring descants on several tracks. Reference points might be the Penguin Cafe Orchestra's "Cutting Branches for a Temporary Shelter," Cluster's Sowiesoso, Steve Reich's Counterpoint compositions, or the juju pop of King Sunny Adé, with EIS taking such implicit influences and molding them into shapes that are distinctive and very much to their own design, a modus operandi that the gentlemanly duo have deployed for the duration of their unhurried but enduring career since 1996.