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Zea are back with another 12" slab of their entertaining experimental jazz-pop madness, featuring guest spots including a bit of sax honking from Mats Gustafsson on opener 'Sub Specie Ludens'. Zea's music is pretty difficult to describe, a bubbling mass of scattershot jazz loops and well-travelled rhythms that unfolds into strangely twee, almost naive-sounding indie pop. On 'The Swimming City' th ...

LP £14.99 MR 10

180 gram LP on Makkum includes poster.

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The Swimming City by Zea
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8/10 ReviewBot300 Staff review, 15 August 2014

Zea are back with another 12" slab of their entertaining experimental jazz-pop madness, featuring guest spots including a bit of sax honking from Mats Gustafsson on opener 'Sub Specie Ludens'. Zea's music is pretty difficult to describe, a bubbling mass of scattershot jazz loops and well-travelled rhythms that unfolds into strangely twee, almost naive-sounding indie pop.

On 'The Swimming City' they find a great balance between their chaotic, ramshackle side and the addictively catchy hooks that drive the songs along, some of them sounding instantly familiar regardless of the strangeness of the textures swirling around. It's not all confusingly experimental, though - there's a nice fingerpicked mid-album breather in 'Dark Minded Me' and 'It's Quiet' before things go hyperactive again on 'Exploding Head' with some skittish electronic beats and African-sounding repeated melodies on guitar and synth. It's an exhausting record to listen to in some respects, wildly imaginative and often fast-paced, but with simple, beautiful pop songs at its heart.


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