The State Between Us

Album Review of The State Between Us by Matthew Herbert Big Band.

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The State Between Us

Matthew Herbert Big Band

The State Between Us by Matthew Herbert Big Band

Release Date: Mar 29, 2019
Record label: Accidental
Genre(s): Pop/Rock

68 Music Critic Score
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The State Between Us - Fairly Good, Based on 3 Critics

Pitchfork - 77
Based on rating 7.7/10
77

Matthew Herbert was once a people-pleasing house DJ, but over the past decade he has become known primarily as an eccentric. His high-concept themes and unorthodox methods--manipulating samples from aerial warfare, a pig's life, and other artifacts of consumerism--tend to overshadow the producer and composer's core mission: an earnest campaign to make us consider not just sounds but also their sources, and to experience both as equals. The project has a forbiddingly post-modern ring to it, so it's worth stressing that the best entry point to The State Between Us, his sprawling and guest-packed Brexit album, is also the easiest: Go in blind, and let his collage of jazz, house, blues and politically loaded field recordings lead your curiosity.

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Resident Advisor - 66
Based on rating 3.3/5
66

My Brexit is a forwarded WhatsApp meme linking the pro-Leave "Grand Wizards" to the KKK. My Brexit is laughing at Marina Hyde's takedowns. My Brexit is thinking that I understand the indicative voting process and then realising that I don't. My Brexit is withdrawing from the news cycle, engaging with the news cycle and then withdrawing again.

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musicOMH.com - 60
Based on rating 3
60

Matthew Herbert is a meticulous man. It's a safe bet that every field recording he uses will be loaded with meaning, and that it will all be in aid of a concept that will be executed in a nuanced, interesting way. It is on this basis that a 2-hour-long album about Brexit - recorded and released within the Article 50 withdrawal period - seems like a decent idea, despite the whole vexed issue now mainly provoking apathy in this reviewer and, one suspects, much of the country.

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