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It's commonplace to call eclectic musicians "magpies," but London's Psapp really do recall scavenging birds. Their music bristles with odd ornaments like a nest trimmed with tinfoil and colored string. Members Galia Durant and Carim Clasmann keep their own nest well stuffed with audible baubles like Bontempi organs, water pipes and egg slicers. But while their starry-eyed sound can verge on the twee, Psapp never settle for being merely quirky. The unusual instrumentation and creative studio techniques -- Glasmann, an engineer with Can's Inner Space studio on his resume, knows how to make familiar instruments sound strange, and strange ones uncannily familiar -- serve as integral parts of the whole, not just bells and whistles. Stylistically, Psapp draw take their cues from bossa nova, Stereolab, Tom Waits and Marc Ribot, suggesting a kind of pastel steampunk. Since their debut EP, 2003's Do Something Wrong, Psapp's funhouse has proved a popular destination: the duo has recorded for Melodic, Tomlab, Leaf, Arable, Gronland, Wiaiwya, Rallye and Domino, and its music has been used in a Volkswagen ad and Grey's Anatomy, among other outlets.
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