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Italians Do It Better

After five years of experimenting with a string of different singers, Chromatics introduced Ruth Radelet as the lead actress to star in their films in 2005. Forever standing out from the crowd, Chromatics imagined the soft rock focus of Hall & Oates stretched over a Fleetwood Mac beat. Trading the dancefloor for gorgeous chords & melancholic strings. They lived where it was always late & neon lights glimmered across the wet streets. This record archives studio work between 2004 & 2006 leading up to the now infamous "Night Drive" album.

The title track, "In The City", enjoyed a second life popularized by the American television show "Nip Tuck". Where the song's rhythmic chirp symbolized the slow drip of anesthetic as the characters went under the knife. "Dark Day" first appeared on the unexpected breakout label sampler ,"After Dark". This is the original version of "Hands In The Dark" from 2006 before they added the spiked electronic sparkle of Caribbean air. The 808 bass will pummel your speakers, and the guitars remember Martin Hannett's coloring of Joy Division. Meanwhile, synthesizers crash into the beat as Ruth hums a melody at the top of the lighthouse. Side one closes with the slo motion "I'm On Fire". A cover of the Bruce Springsteen classic originally written for "Nebraska", that later appeared on "Born In The U.S.A.".

Chromatics is the blood & guts of American imagery, with a taste for European noir. Pour a little out for Danny Federici tonight. On the B side, the record takes a moment to breathe with the abstract instrumental, "Tears Of Pain". Revisiting the spacial elements of Morricone & Krzysztof Komeda overlooking a city of bridges. The vocoder driven "Lady" sounds like a Japanese sequencer on it's death bed struggling to arpeggiate it's last electronic breath. Then the band gives a nod to one of the greatest bands to ever come out of Portland, Dead Moon. Their cover of "Dagger Moon" hovers in a thick synthetic waltz from 2005 that predates all drag. The record closes with the unreleased instrumental version of "In The City". Meant to appear on the original 12", but got destroyed at the pressing plant in a wharehouse fire. This record has been 100 % remastered with analog equipment from the original tape reels. So fresh, it's hard to believe that this record dates back to 2004-2006.

Full color artwork with the classic drawing of Ruth glaring into an uncertain future with a single tear. Comes with a full color insert with lyrics on one side, & a drawing of dueling Peggy Moffitts on the other. Peggy Moffit was the 1960's muse for the visionary fashion designer, Rudi Gernreich. Vinyl version includes a free digital download code with a bonus track titled, "The Long Road Home". Due to Chromatics' disregaurd for music industry laws, & a blatant Francoise Hardy vocal sample, this track cannot be sold. So we decided to give it to you. This record has it all. Despair...Romance...Hope...Beauty...Pain. All in under 103 beats per melody.

Published: October 13, 2010