I keep thinking that Ambivalence Avenue, the new release from obscure U.K. producer/multi-instrumentalist Bibio, is a modern-day Play, Moby’s ground-breaking multi-hit electro record released (in a happy coincidence) a decade ago this year. But it’s not as if Play was less than modern; Ambivalence Avenue just takes its template, of mashing electro beats with a folk sensibility while including found sounds and field recordings, and refines it. And Bibio manages the difficult task of making the record sound more fragile (with such breath-taking tracks as “Lovers’ Carvings” and “Haikuesque (When She Laughs)”) yet harder (the Daft Punk-esque “Sugarette” and “Jealous of Roses”). Like Play, however, Ambivalence Avenue descends into spacey, minimalist tracks at the CD’s end that serve more as relief than anything else. But the rest is magical. So play, and play again. A-
Bibio: Ambivalence Avenue
from the album Ambivalence Avenue
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