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ORG Lounge

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Album Review

Who is Ole Roar Granli? Why, he is the lead member of the electronica entity named ORG, based out of Holter, Norway. Granli handles the programming, writing, arranging, and mixing on the 12-track debut ORG Lounge and, honestly, puts Fatboy Slim to shame. What ORG offers up is jazzy/lounge electronica layered over colorful trip-hop and drum'n'bass beats. Granli is supremely talented at infusing all sorts of eclectic rhythms, breaks, solos, and ethnic flavor into his lengthy tracks. For instance, rumba meets jam-style jazz on the lively "Jazz Trippin'." What sound doesn't this guy extract from his rig? The song is accented by a lead xylophone line (!) bopping over racy jazz bass and brush playing and bright piano parts. Midsong, "Jazz Trippin'" slows to a smooth groove, only to burst again and race to an explosive finish. The vinyl record-like crackles here are also a nice touch. Another inspired moment is the album's loungy opener, "Smooth," where ORG uses a laid-back drum-machine pattern, bright synth chords and muted trumpet, and electric piano and basslines to transport listeners to an intimate jazz club. The song launches into a trip-hop beat midway, but the lounge affair still continues to vibe over it, only with a quickened tempo. The poetry slam-style rap delivery by Dustlab makes "Smooth" just too damn cool. A couple of other tracks on this mostly instrumental disc feature vocalists as well, such as "Too Beautiful." More speedy trip-hop beats are on tap, and ethereal Swing Out Sister-style vocals — which actually personify the word beautiful — float like a light breeze over the tasty beats and understated synth chords. ORG deserves immediate attention. ORG Lounge is funky, smooth, invigorating, and an all-around hip experience. One point that needs to be stressed is how Granli is truly a master of his instruments. It's quite amazing what he extracts from his synths, drum machines, and computers, and his fare does not fall victim to sounding "too computer-y." On the contrary, his music sounds real and warm. ORG Lounge is pure aural excitement. Granli has the discipline and savvy to pull off musical craziness, and listeners who visit his lounge will leave feeling dizzy, but begging for more.

ORG Lounge, ORG Lounge
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