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Seventh Tree

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Bassist Jon Davie adopted the nom de punk John Thomas; whatever you think of their opportunism, you can't fault the dedication of a man so keen to keep his career alive he was willing to name himself after a euphemism for the penis. When you've appeared on stage playing a theremin with your crotch while dressed as a kind of besequinned Nazi air hostess, as Goldfrapp did after the release of 2005's Supernature, you could reasonably argue that you've explored the possibilities of camply sexualised glam-influenced electro-pop pretty thoroughly. After spending years on the dancefloor with Black Cherry and Supernature, Goldfrapp take a breather with Seventh Tree.

As sad as it will be to see some parts of the Goldfrapp sound disappear, I am excited and thrilled at the prospect of what they might deliver next. It was certified gold by the British Phonographic Industry (BPI) within four days of release, on 29 February 2008. BEST OF ALL, a foldout poster (and believe me this is every Goldfrapp fan's wet dream) of Allison herself, in white pagan robe, completely barefoot with her deliciously hot long legs exposed and dark eyeliner standing cross-stance on a tree with the head of the owl mask perched high above with a lake background.postcards containing unseen photos included alternate shot of the owlman, and Allison standing in a cute polka dot uniform alongside a horse behind a tree.

And now I love them all - Clowns' ethereal, breathy, incoherent vocalisation accompanying clever sampling (they don't play guitars, you wouldn't know), the purity and simplicity of the lyrics to Some People and Road to Somewhere. It's a blissed out trippy LP of dreamy songs to listen to on the beach or floating on a boat down the river while smoking a doobie and watching the clouds in the sky drift by. The album artwork depicted Goldfrapp dressed as a clown and hugging a tree, as well as Gregory dressed as an owl. Beautiful melodies and electronic sounds and over this arrangement Alison pours out a string of life-affirming lyrics promoting actions that you can take that can result in a nirvana of sorts.

Informed by Edward Lear, The Wicker Man and early Pink Floyd, it's leaves and owls and the mildly psychedelic. Sonic luxury has been the only constant in the duo's sound, from Felt Mountain's darkly lavish soundscapes to Black Cherry and Supernature's decadent dance hits, and there's plenty of it here, too. Over a perfectly balanced soundtrack of strings and guitars Alison mumbles something about large balloons being played with by clowns.

Little Bird, with its Beatlesque psychedelia and soaring vocal coda is probably the best thing they've ever done. Kat Lister of NME expressed that " Seventh Tree is bound to ruffle a few electro-feathered fans, but there's no denying it's a venture that sets the pair into new experimental territory.Seventh Tree is the fourth studio album by English electronic music duo Goldfrapp, released on 22 February 2008 by Mute Records.

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