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Album: Domestic Economy 7
Artist: Bitstream
Label: Modern Love
Released: 2004
Summary: Dark, rhythmic, scary music that's refreshingly original.

Domestic Economy 7 features a rather eclectic mix of elements: droning basslines that sound like they're designed to give you a headache; strange bleeping noises; the occasional unsettling choir; the odd burst of vocals, truncated to snippets less than a syllable long that sound like a numbers station having a nervous breakdown; and, most of all, a mixture of both abrasive and squishy percussive sounds, predominantly featuring short bursts of what sounds like a turntablist scratching with a recording of white noise.

On paper, the combination may sound like an experiment to find out what you can get away with charging people good money for, and indeed you'd be forgiven for finding this album hard to palate on your first listen. It's a bit of a grower, though, and over time some of the tracks start to make some sort of musical sense. Sure, they still sound ominous and scary, with pulsating elements that still threaten to give you a headache, but they also start to sound interesting and even strangely catchy in places.

In the long term, the refreshing originality of this album is a breath of fresh air, and well worth the patience required to get past the first few listens. I really can't think of any other album quite like it. If quirky, slightly scary electronic music with predominant rhythms is your thing, you should probably give this album a few listens. It can take a while to get used to, but it's certainly unique.

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