Big Calm

Big Calm

In the hands of Tricky, Portishead, and Massive Attack, trip-hop earned a reputation for being dark, even claustrophobic. On their second album, though, Morcheeba preserved the style's sedate tempos and sultry atmospheres while opening up a world of warmth and color. Hip-hop beats and turntable scratches are fleshed out with acoustic guitars, country blues, a splash of reggae, and even sitar, while singer Skye Edwards holds the spotlight with her hushed, soulful delivery. As the cover art underscores, it's best heard in a horizontal position.

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