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The Transponder Orchestra
Artist
Starkey
ReleaseProduct
The Transponder Orchestra
Label
Alpha Pup Records
Catalogue Number
APR080
Release Date
August 2015
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Since debuting in the mid-‘00s, Philadelphia producer Starkey has established a unique take on grime, dubstep, and hip hop over a run of releases for top notch labels including Planet Mu, Werkdiscs, Ninja Tune, and his own Slit Jockey imprint. In recent years, his style has become grander and more ambitious in scope, and on Starkey’s fourth album The Transponder Orchestra he continues his explorations into longform track arrangements, melodically complex composition, and crystal-clear production. Starkey draws on everything from grime to trance to trap EDM to electronic pop across the record, but he unifies these disparate styles and makes them his own. The album opens with ‘Dream’, a soaring, ornate piece of music that numbers amongst Starkey’s most determined productions to date, before diving headfirst into the tear-out basslines and Gameboy bleeps of ‘Proton’. Throughout the album Starkey plays with this contrast between the beautiful and the brash, between classicism and crudeness, where every gorgeous synth line is offset by a ludicrously heavy bass drop. These are some of Starkey’s most labyrinthine and multifaceted works: ‘This’ is a widescreen, wide-eyed track that would feel at home in a huge stadium as much as a tiny club, while the epic, nine-minute album closer ‘We Get Lost Among The Crowds’ updates the baroque electronica of Jean-Michel Jarre for the Ableton generation.

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  1. 1 Dream 5:44 Starkey Buy
  2. 2 Proton 4:37 Starkey Buy
  3. 3 Moon Watcher 5:40 Starkey Buy
  4. 4 Hold On to Your Love 4:32 Starkey Buy
  5. 5 It Rained 3:03 Starkey Buy
  6. 6 Evolution 4:32 Starkey Buy
  7. 7 Plasma 3:49 Starkey Buy
  8. 8 This 7:25 Starkey Buy
  9. 9 One Last Kiss 4:30 Starkey Buy
  10. 10 Plains 4:11 Starkey Buy
  11. 11 Divine Planet 5:19 Starkey Buy
  12. 12 We Get Lost Among The Crowds 9:36 Starkey Buy

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