Sonic Reducer

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Nine studio albums deep, Moby returns in full electronic force and points it toward a dance record. On Last Night , Moby stays off the vocals and allows artists like Grandmaster Caz to fill the track with rhymes, turning out an album that’s rhythmic and groovy, and hints at a world of clubs and drugs. At times, Moby’s sample layering blankets tracks with dissonance; but for the most part the cohesion of breaks and odd harmonies allow Last Night to linger pleasantly. (JH)

Ministry and Co-Conspirators Cover Up (13th Planet Records)

It’s more than a little appropriate that this thing dropped on April Fool’s Day. Al Jourgensen continues to make fools of us all with his expectation-defying stunts. As a Ministry send-up, this covers disc shoulders pop weight like "Lay Lady Lay," "Mississippi Queen," "Bang a Gong" and "What a Wonderful World." Tongue-in-cheek, to be sure, but without relying on irony too heavily, this is still a disc of love, an embracing of influences. That’s ultimately why it works so well. Fans and soon-to-be fans alike should pick up a copy. (MD)

Elf Power In a Cave (Rykodisk)

Should the rest of my life be like the weeks since this March 25 release, I expect compulsive listening sessions with In a Cave every day until I die. Although no audial allegory could precisely do it justice, imagine the synthesis of Pink Floyd’s deeply strange Piper at the Gates of Dawn with the serene twee within Belle and Sebastian’s The Boy with the Arab Strap , add a tiny drop of Big Star’s power pop, and you’ll be somewhere close to understanding the particular psychedelic adventure contained within Elf Power‘s beautifully experimental ninth album. (JCC)

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