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Tales Of Us

For their latest record Tales Of Us, Goldfrapp have created music that is celestial and majestic, delivering an album akin to the past release Seventh Tree. For over a decade Goldfrapp have crossed many genres, but for their sixth recording they seemed to have reached a maturity, fusing past triumphs with the skill and technique of truly accomplished musicians.

Opening the album, soft repeating strings unfold, soon to be accompanied by a set of delicate keys. We are then introduced to Alison Goldfrapp's bewitching vocals. She has always been able to effortlessly move from hushed tones to piercing notes in a way that is magnetic and enticing. Where past releases were a combination of Goldfrapp's singing and Will Gregory's sonic textures, this time her voice is more in the spotlight. Gentle string arrangements and faint guitars are used as tools to support her sensual timbre.

It is difficult to pick a lot of single tracks as Tales Of Us is best listened to as a whole. All the songs seem to flow and merge into one another. Somehow the album manages the trick of being both background music and a piece of work that has many riches if given the attention. 'Thea' is the only song with anything resembling a drum beat – the rest of the album instead seems to float through the air.

One criticism of Tales Of Us is that is a record that will grow on the listener rather than grab instant attention like the dancefloor anthems found on Black Cherry or Supernature. Some may also say that although Goldfrapp sound more accomplished, they have lost the cutting edge heard on their debut Felt Mountain. While their music maybe more polished, it is still delivered in the same enigmatic vein.