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Beacons of Ancestorship (Bonus Track Version)

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Editors’ Notes

As the prime movers of the instrumental post-rock scene, Chicago’s Tortoise have single-handedly injected a level of musical virtuosity not often associated with the indie-rock genre. However, the band has always understood that a flurry of notes alone does not make a group and have centered their explorations on muscular grooves that reflect the autodrones of Kraftwerk. Their sixth studio album and first in five years, Beacons of Ancestorship stakes out some new territory in its Moog-loving keyboard excursions. Their love of primitive, funky synths gives a sinister ‘80s video game appeal to much of what they do. When they turn it up for overdrive on “Yinxianghechengqi,” the sound turns ominous and grinding and makes the album’s previous dark excursions — “High Class Slim Came Floatin’ In,” “Prepare Your Coffin” — sound positively jovial. “The Fall of Seven Diamonds Plus One” is their standard Ennio Morricone’s spaghetti-western homage. “Minors” has a subtle funk under its placid, pleasing tones. Tortoise makes background music that refuses to stay in the background.

Customer Reviews

Well worth the wait

Another jewel in the crown that is Tortoise. It took quite a while, but this is new LP kicks!

Classic Tortoise

Tortoise are no "has-beens". They are timeless innovators. Incredible synth work, amazing grooves.

new soundtrack for our lives

Look at the band, and then it all makes sense. When geniuses naturally come together like this all you gonna get is master pieces. Tortoise isn't gonna be finished til you see replicating molecules return to refresh the universe. Personally I'm a BIG John McEntire fan... Oregon state all the way!


Formed: 1990 in Chicago, IL

Genre: Alternative

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

Tortoise revolutionized American indie rock in the mid-'90s by playing down tried-and-true punk and rock & roll influences, emphasizing instead the incorporation of a variety of left-field music genres from the past 20 years, including Krautrock, dub, avant-garde jazz, classical minimalism, ambient and space music, film music, and British electronica. At odds as well with the shambling framework of alternative rock's normal song structure, the group -- as large as a septet, with at times two vibes...
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