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Nothing Changes Under the Sun

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Album Review

Andy Dragazis, aka Blue States, creates an organic, electronic mini-symphony on Nothing Changes Under the Sun. Both Dragazis' choice for a band name and the album's title describe the release perfectly. Dragazis employs lo-fi, fuzzy synth sounds to create peaceful, relaxing instrumental soundscapes, interlaced with skittering breakbeats and layers of tension. Echoes of Ennio Morricone-style Western motifs float around randomly, as Dragazis approaches melodies, discards them, and returns to them on later tracks. It seems unusual, but Nothing Changes Under the Sun sounds like an imaginary Vangelis score for a Sergio Leone spaghetti Western. The album is not necessarily a compelling listen from start to finish, but it's the kind of album where one's interest hits peaks and valleys as Dragazis weaves in and out of warm, organic sounds. It's also an album that grows on a listener; it might appear lazy or overly repetitive until repeat listens unravel the jazzy, subtle sound treats. When Dragazis deploys samples, they're always impeccable and entirely in tune with the surrounding music. Standout tracks include "Arion," a song of moody, buzzing genius; "Spit and Soar," which reaches toward the creepy textures of early DJ Shadow and Unkle; and "Elios Therepia," a song that recalls the ragged, broad-vista cool of David Holmes' Bow Down to the Exit Sign and Death in Vegas' The Contino Sessions. "Cherio Manou" collects many of the album's finer ideas into what sounds like the song Squarepusher's been trying to create his entire career. Nothing Changes Under the Sun is as loaded with passion as Dragazis is loaded with talent. It's an album worth deciphering, as it releases bountiful rewards.


Formed: 1997 in London, England

Genre: Electronic

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

With the help of a couple friends, Andy Dragazis' semi-kitschy trip-hop outfit Blue States became active in 1997. After playing out for a short amount of time, Dragazis relocated to Sussex, England, and was courted by Memphis Industries, a label that began issuing his singles. Between 1998 and 1999, five were released, setting the table for Nothing Changes Under the Sun, an LP released in 2000. In 2001, Thievery Corporation licensed the record in the U.S. on their Eighteenth Street Lounge Music imprint,...
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Nothing Changes Under the Sun, Blue States
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