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II by Unknown Mortal Orchestra
Released: Feb 2013
Label: Jagjaguwar
UMO's second album provides something of a smoother high than their equally great yet slightly lower-fi debut. Leader Ruban Nielson double-tracks his vocals for a dazed and echoed effect, which makes him sound both eerie and content, and either trapped at the bottom of the ocean (where he wishes he could hide on "Swim and Sleep") or beamed in from the moon. Bubbly, noodle-y guitar snakes through a fog of synths as the psych-poppers add hints of soul and funk on "So Good at Being in Trouble" and "One at a Time," and go all-out classic rock on "No Need for a Leader" and "Faded in the Morning."
Stephanie Benson
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