Releases from September–October 2019

Great albums from around the world

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Find releases from 2018.

Also check out some of the great reissues of classic albums.

 

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Pre-sale of the week is Notes On A Conditional Form by The 1975, out on 21 February.

Special pre-sale offer: The 1975 – Notes On A Conditional FormSpecial pre-sale offer: Elbow – Giants Of All SizesSpecial pre-sale offer: Michael Kiwanuka – KiwanukaSpecial pre-sale offer: Alter Bridge – Walk The SkySpecial pre-sale offer: David Bowie – VH1 StorytellersSpecial pre-sale offer: Wildwood Kin – Wildwood KinSpecial pre-sale offer: Underworld – Drift SongsSpecial pre-sale offer: Big Thief – Two HandsSpecial pre-sale offer: The Sherlocks – Under Your SkySpecial pre-sale offer: Mark Lanegan Band – Somebody’s Knocking

Prefab Sprout  |  Whiskey Myers  |  Beth Hart  |  The Beatles  |  Sturgill Simpson  |  The New Pornographers  |  Michaela Anne  |  The Steve Howe Trio  |  Of Mice & Men  |  Opeth  |  Dinosaur Jr.  |  Kacy & Clayton  |  Underworld  |  Wildwood Kin  |  Alter Bridge  |  Wilco  |  The Sherlocks  |  The Dead South  |  Mark Lanegan Band  |  Michael Kiwanuka  |  Big Thief  |  Elbow  |  Simple Minds  |  Orchestral Manoeuvres In The Dark  |  Angel Olsen  |  David Bowie  |  Gary Numan  |  Bodega  |  Foals  |  The Cure  |  Hawkwind  |  Anna Meredith  |  The Jam  |  Stereophonics  |  The 1975

 


 

Jump to: 27 September  |  20 September  |  13 September  |  6 September

 

Releases for 27 September 2019

27 September is another cracking week for new releases, and it was tough to distill them down to six – still, here we go! Michaela Anne has long been lauded for her timeless voice and narrative depth, and Desert Dove takes that to the next level: it’s confessional and unforgettable without being saccharine or self-indulgent, and showcases her stellar voice and distinct vision. There’s a deep climatic unease running through In The Morse Code of Brake Lights that’s matched only by the sheer musical glee with which The New Pornographers address the prevailing mood of the moment – this is an album in which foreboding and bliss somehow go hand in hand. New Frontier is the excellent new jazz-fusion album by The Steve Howe Trio that showcases the instrumental talents of Steve, drummer Dylan Howe and organist Ross Stanley, and features three compositions co-written with Steve’s former Yes band-mate Bill Bruford. Sturgill Simpson’s fourth album, Sound & Fury, comes with a promise! This “sleazy, steamy rock’n’roll record” is a marked departure from 2016’s acclaimed, Grammy-winning A Sailor’s Guide To Earth. Southern rockers Whiskey Myers stretch their collective wings like never before on their eponymous new album, which could just be the finest, most focused statement from to date, full of soulful story-telling packed with real dynamics and blistering guitar firepower.

Our album of the week comes from Beth Hart, who is as real as it gets. Rather than airbrushing her image and concealing her blemishes, she throws down her cards. On War In My Mind, this Grammy-nominated talent is at her most raw on a record that embraces her merits and flaws, channels her bittersweet head-space and spins gold from her demons.

  • Beth Hart - War In My Mind
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    • Beth Hart  War In My Mind  Pre-sale offer CD £11.99 / Deluxe CD £19.99 / LP £21.99
  • Beth Hart is as real as it gets. At a time when other musicians polish their songs, airbrush their image, conceal their blemishes, deny their age and bury their darkest secrets, this is one artist who throws down her cards and invites you to either love her anyway or take a walk. And with War In My Mind, this Grammy-nominated talent has never served herself up so raw, on a record that embraces her merits and flaws, channels her bittersweet head-space and spins gold from her demons.
  • Note: the LP is available on coloured vinyl.
  • Michaela Anne - Desert Dove
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    • Michaela Anne  Desert Dove  Pre-sale offer CD £11.99 / LP £22.99
  • Michaela Anne has long been lauded for her timeless voice and narrative depth, and Desert Dove takes that to the next level. The songwriting is confessional and unforgettable without being saccharine or self-indulgent. The tracks call to mind Michaela’s diverse influences – everything from Stevie Nick’s powerful voice and Fleetwood Mac’s vibey arrangements to the Dixie Chicks’ incredible balance of conviction and catchiness – all showcasing her stellar voice and distinct vision.
  • The New Pornographers - In The Morse Code Of Brake Lights
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    • The New Pornographers  In The Morse Code Of Brake Lights  Pre-sale offer CD £12.99 / LP £21.99
  • What happens when a nation that was born to run, and to rev engines into the wild frontier, runs into the full stop that is our current social and political climate? The answer, my friend, is somewhere In The Morse Code of Brake Lights, as The New Pornographers would have it on their eighth album. There’s a deep climatic unease running through these 11 tracks that’s matched only by the sheer musical glee with which the band addresses the prevailing mood of the moment. This is an album in which foreboding and bliss somehow go hand in hand.
  • The Steve Howe Trio - New Frontier
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    • The Steve Howe Trio  New Frontier  Pre-sale offer £11.99 / LP £21.99
  • New Frontier is the excellent new studio album by The Steve Howe Trio, founded by celebrated Yes guitarist Steve Howe and featuring Dylan Howe on drums and Ross Stanley on organ. This is a fine work that showcases the instrumental talents of the three musicians and reflects the jazz-fusion side of Steve Howe’s musical personality. Notably, the album also features three compositions co-written with Steve’s former band-mate Bill Bruford.
  • Sturgill Simpson - Sound & Fury
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    • Sturgill Simpson  Sound & Fury  Pre-sale offer CD £11.99 / LP £23.99
  • Sturgill Simpson’s fourth album, Sound & Fury, comes with a promise! The album – which Simpson describes as “a sleazy, steamy rock’n’roll record” – is a marked departure from 2016’s acclaimed A Sailor’s Guide To Earth, which won Best Country Album and was nominated for Album of the Year at that year’s Grammy Awards.
  • Whiskey Myers - Whiskey Myers
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    • Whiskey Myers  Whiskey Myers  Pre-sale offer CD £12.99 / 2-LP £24.99
  • Whiskey Myers is the eponymous new album from these emotive southern rockers that sees them stretching their collective wings like never before. This follow-up to 2016’s Mud could just be the finest, most focused statement from Whiskey Myers to date, representing these East Texas musicians’ core values across 14 finely crafted tracks of soulful story-telling packed with real dynamics and blistering guitar firepower.
 

 

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Releases for 20 September 2019

First up for 20 September’s not-so-secret six is Why Me? Why Not, a clear upgrade on As You Were but not a radical departure from it, to the relief of Liam Gallagher’s loyal fans. Liam says “The most radical thing I can do is do it better every time. Some other bands and singers want to try it! It’s harder than doing a new South American opera disco song, that’s for sure.” Nice dig at his bro there! Samantha Fish, whose prodigious gifts as a genre-bending songwriter and electrifying guitarist have inspired tremendous critical acclaim and earned her an abundance of awards, is poised for a major breakthrough with her edgy roots-music album Kill Or Be Kind. While Keane singer Tom Chaplin found solo success, Tim Rice-Oxley’s life fell apart. From the ashes, Tim wrote an album’s worth of personal songs, which the other band members were drawn to immediately. Cause And Effect, the band’s first album in seven years, is the result. Morning In America consists of 7 songs recorded during the sessions for Mudhoney’s 2018 album, Digital Garbage, including alternate versions of stand-out tracks and several outtakes. Nine is the confusingly named eighth studio album from pop-punkers Blink-182, and is replete with the usual guitar hooks and singalong choruses. The band remain as vital and relevant as they ever were.

Our release of the week is Jaime, the stunning solo debut from Brittany Howard, frontwoman and guitarist in Alabama Shakes and one of music’s most celebrated figures, who has boldly decided to explore new directions, with diverse instrumentation and arrangements and intimate, revelatory lyrics.

  • Brittany Howard - Jaime
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    • Brittany Howard  Jaime  CD £11.99 / LP £20.99
  • Jaime is the stunning solo debut from Brittany Howard. Says Howard “I turned thirty and I was like, ‘What do I want the rest of my life to look like?’ Do I want to play the same songs until I’m fifty and then retire, or do I do something that’s scarier for me? Do I want people to understand me and know me, do I want to tell them my story? I’m very private, but my favourite work is when people are being honest and really doing themselves.
  • As the frontwoman and guitarist in Alabama Shakes, Howard has become one of music’s most celebrated figures – the band has won four Grammys (out of its nine nominations), and she has performed everywhere from the Obama White House to the main stage at Lollapalooza, where she sang with Paul McCartney at his invitation. But for Jaime, Howard boldly decided to explore new directions, with diverse instrumentation and arrangements and intimate, revelatory lyrics.
  • Liam Gallagher - Why Me? Why Not
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    • Liam Gallagher  Why Me? Why Not  CD £12.99 / Deluxe CD £14.99 / LP £23.99
  • Good things come to those who wait: Why Me? Why Not is a clear upgrade on As You Were but not a radical departure from it, which will come as a relief to Liam Gallagher’s loyal fans. Liam himself says “The most radical thing I can do – as if I’d ever say radical normally! – but the most radical thing I can do is do it better every time. Some other bands and singers want to try it! It’s harder than doing a new South American opera disco song, that’s for sure.” Nice dig at his bro there!
  • Note: the LP version is available on indies-only coloured vinyl.
  • Samantha Fish - Kill Or Be Kind
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    • Samantha Fish  Kill Or Be Kind  CD £12.99
  • Samantha Fish’s prodigious gifts as a genre-bending songwriter and electrifying guitarist have inspired tremendous acclaim from critics and her peers and have earned the young artist an abundance of awards. Now, Fish is poised for a major breakthrough: her edgy album Kill Or Be Kind is sure to establish Fish as a potent force in roots music.
  • Keane - Cause And Effect
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    • Keane  Cause And Effect  CD £12.99 / Deluxe CD £15.99 / 2-LP £26.99
  • The birth of Keane’s first album in seven years came as a surprise even to them. Singer Tom Chaplin had released two solo albums, The Wave and Twelve Tales Of Christmas, but missed his old sparring partner, Tim Rice-Oxley. “I found myself wondering how I had come to let this very enigmatic and important relationship in my life drift,” says Chaplin. Meanwhile Rice-Oxley found his life falling apart. From the ashes, he had written an album’s worth of personal songs, fuelled by humour as well as pain. When Chaplin, bassist Jesse Quin and drummer Richard Hughes heard the songs, they were drawn to them immediately, both sonically and lyrically. Cause And Effect is the result.
  • Mudhoney - Morning In America
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    • Mudhoney  Morning In America  LP £18.99
  • Morning In America consists of 7 songs recorded during the sessions for Mudhoney’s 2018 album, Digital Garbage. They include ‘Let’s Kill Yourself Live Again’ (an alternate version of the Digital Garbage stand-out ‘Kill Yourself Live’, and the bonus track for the Japanese CD version of that album), ‘One Bad Actor’ (a new version of Mudhoney’s track on the limited-edition, and now very sold-out, SPF30 split 7" with Hot Snakes), album outtakes ‘Snake Oil Charmer’, ‘Morning In America’ and ‘Creeps Are Everywhere’, plus ‘Ensam I Natt’ (‘So Lonely Tonight’, a Leather Nun cover) and ‘Vortex Of Lies’ from a very limited EU tour 7".
 

 

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Releases for 13 September 2019

Our first selection for 13 September comes from The Lumineers, whose latest, III, is a concept album spanning three generations of a fictitious family: audacious and darker in tone than anything the band have ever done, it mixes raw emotional themes with ear-catching melodies, moving masterfully in new artistic directions. Sam Fender has the guitar and the cheekbones of a supermodel; but, crucially, he really can write songs; on Hypersonic Missiles, these range from the usual male obsessions to male suicide, the spice epidemic and fear of nuclear disaster – like a more brooding Killers coupled with a boyish, brass-loving Bruce Springsteen, albeit more Newcastle than New Jersey. Days Of The Bagnold Summer began life as an award-winning graphic novel, became a feature film and is now a wonderful, rich, bittersweet and warmly welcoming original soundtrack by Belle And Sebastian consisting of eleven brand-new songs plus re-recorded versions of two classics. Metronomy Forever’s length gives proper breathing room to its 17 tracks, which display Metronomy’s innate skill for blending off-kilter funk, energising club vibes and esoteric pop, interspersed with some mood-setting, glistening and melodic electronica. Korn’s new release, The Nothing, is a bit of a concept album. Vocalist Jonathan Davis elaborates: “Deep within our Earth lives an extraordinary force, dynamic and polarizing, pulling at us every moment of our lives. There is a miraculous and small realm within this vortex where where balance exists, and here the soul finds its refuge.” That’s some concept!

Our album of the week is Beneath The Eyrie, the eleventh full-length album from iconic alternative band Pixies. Sessions for the album took place at Dreamland Recordings near Woodstock, New York and – unusually – the band documented every minute of the process, which makes up a 12-part podcast. But more to the point, the album’s a good ’un!

  • Pixies - Beneath The Eyrie
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    • Pixies  Beneath The Eyrie  CD £11.99 / Deluxe CD £13.99 / LP £23.99
  • Beneath The Eyrie is the eleventh full-length album from iconic alternative band Pixies. Sessions for the album took place at Dreamland Recordings near Woodstock, New York and – unusually – the band documented every minute of the process, which makes up a 12-part podcast. But more to the point, the album’s a good ’un!
  • Note: the LP is available as an exclusive indies-only version.
  • The Lumineers - III
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    • The Lumineers  III  CD £11.99 / 2-LP £27.99
  • The Lumineers’s latest, III, is a concept album spanning three generations of a fictitious family known as the Sparks, each of the three chapters focusing on one main character in the album’s storyline. III is audacious: every note, every syllable, and every moment of silence in between is emotionally charged. In tone, the album is darker than anything the band have ever done. Mixing raw emotional themes with their ear-catching melodies, expressive vocals and their trademark acoustic sound, III moves masterfully in artistic directions not before travelled by the band.
  • Sam Fender - Hypersonic Missile
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    • Sam Fender  Hypersonic Missile  CD £11.99 / LP £20.99
  • Sam Fender has the guitar and the cheekbones of a supermodel; but, crucially, he really can write songs. On his debut full-length album, Hypersonic Missiles, these range from the usual male obsessions to male suicide, the spice epidemic and fear of nuclear disaster. Fender’s songs are lethally catchy – like a more brooding Killers coupled with a boyish, brass-loving Bruce Springsteen, albeit more Newcastle than New Jersey. And his voice is nothing like the pigeon-warble of his peers, often vaulting to Jeff Buckley levels of vulnerability.
  • Belle And Sebastian - Days Of The Bagnold Summer
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    • Belle And Sebastian  Days Of The Bagnold Summer  CD £12.99 / LP £19.99
  • Days Of The Bagnold Summer began life as an award-winning 2012 graphic novel by Joff Winterhart, was turned into a feature film and is now a wonderful, rich, bittersweet and warmly welcoming original soundtrack by Belle And Sebastian. The album features eleven brand-new songs, as well as re-recorded versions of the classics ‘Get Me Away From Here I’m Dying’, originally appearing on 1996’s If You’re Feeling Sinister, and ‘I Know Where The Summer Goes’, from 1998’s This Is Just A Modern Rock Song EP.
  • Metronomy - Metronomy Forever
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    • Metronomy  Metronomy Forever  CD £12.99 / 2-LP £24.99
  • Metronomy Forever is long. Its length is born from a desire for breathing room, from not wanting to stuff the hits together like a bunch of petrol-station roses – a modern way of listening to music. Metronomy’s innate skill for blending off-kilter funk, energising club vibes and esoteric pop is interspersed with some mood-setting, glistening and melodic electronica on the 17 tracks. The band’s leader, Joseph Mount, called upon a variety of inspirations for this album.
  • Korn - The Nothing
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    • Korn  The Nothing  CD £12.99 / LP £25.99
  • Korn’s new release, The Nothing, is a bit of a concept album. Vocalist Jonathan Davis elaborates: “Deep within our Earth lives an extraordinary force. Very few are aware of the magnitude and significance of this place where good/evil, dark/light, bliss/torment, loss/gain and hope/despair all exist as one – pulling at us every moment of our lives. It’s not something we can choose to navigate, but rather an awareness of this ‘presence’ that surrounds us with every breath, as if we are being watched at every moment. It’s the place where black and white energies attach themselves to our souls, and shape our emotion, choices, perspective and ultimately our very existence. There is a miraculous and small realm within this vortex and it’s the only place where balance between these dynamic and polarizing forces exists – where the soul finds its refuge.
 

 

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Releases for 6 September 2019

Our picks for 6 September kick off with a bit of a treat: Echo & The Bunnymen release all of the tracks they recorded for the legendary John Peel Sessions during their formative years between 1979 and 1983, many of which never appeared on their albums, as the band used the sessions to experiment with new material. The Highwomen is a country supergroup – Brandi Carlile, Amanda Shires, Natalie Hemby and Maren Morris – and on their debut they explore in vivid colour and humour the nuances of being a woman in 2019, following themes such as motherhood, resilience, loss, heartache, and including possibly the first openly gay song in country music. Black Star Riders’ fourth studio album, Another State Of Grace, builds on the accomplishments of All Hell Breaks Loose, The Killer Instinct and Heavy Fire – a canon that has paved the way for this band to be recognised as a powerful force in contemporary rock’n’roll. Free is the follow-up to Iggy Pop’s 2016 rocker Post Pop Depression – and, in true Iggy style, the new album is completely different! Iggy has described the album’s creation process as something liberating, that “just kind of happened.” With more than 118 million records sold, countless gold awards received and top 10 singles all over the world, there really is no need to introduce Status Quo. In spite of all that success, however, the band has always remained very down-to-earth and, after more than half a century, they rock like they have never done before on Backbone, their 33rd studio album.

Our album of the week is Lost Girls, another brilliant full-length in the incredible, acclaimed discography of Bat For Lashes, aka Natasha Khan. Her fifth album mixes heavy bass lines, synth arpeggios, Iranian pop beats and cascading choruses with some of her finest songwriting to date. This is Khan dreaming up her own fully formed parallel universe, creating an off-kilter coming-of-age film in which a powerful female energy casts spells and leaves clues for us to follow.

  • Bat For Lashes - Lost Girls
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    • Bat For Lashes  Lost Girls  CD £11.99 / LP £20.99 / Cassette £11.99
  • Lost Girls is the fifth studio album from Bat For Lashes – aka Natasha Khan. It’s another brilliant full-length in Khan’s incredible, acclaimed discography, mixing sounds she’s always loved – heavy bass lines, synth arpeggios, Iranian pop beats, cascading choruses – with some of her finest songwriting to date. This is an album full of romance, an homage to Los Angeles, to being a kid in the ’80s, to films that touched and changed her life.
  • Spanning 10 tracks, Lost Girls sees Khan dreaming up her own fully formed parallel universe, creating an off-kilter coming-of-age film in which gangs of marauding female bikers roam our streets, teenagers make out on car bonnets and a powerful female energy casts spells and leaves clues for us to follow.
  • Note: the LP version is available on indies-only clear vinyl with red/pink splatter.
  • Echo & The Bunnymen - The John Peel Sessions 1979–1983
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    • Echo & The Bunnymen  The John Peel Sessions 1979–1983  CD £12.99 / 2-LP £24.99
  • Echo & The Bunnymen present an archival dig through all of the tracks they recorded for the legendary John Peel Sessions during their formative years between 1979 and 1983. Many of the 21 songs in this collection did not appear on their albums, as the band actually used the sessions to experiment with new material.
  • Track listing: 1. Read It In Books / 2. Stars Are Stars / 3. I Bagsy Yours / 4. Villiers Terrace / 5. The Pictures On My Wall / 6. All That Jazz / 7. Over The Wall / 8. All My Colours / 9. That Golden Smile / 10. Heaven Up Here / 11. Turquoise Days / 12. Taking Advantage / 13. An Equation / 14. No Hands / 15. Silver / 16. Seven Seas / 17. The Killing Moon / 18. Nocturnal Me / 19. Watch Out Below / 20. Ocean Rain / 21. My Kingdom
  • The Highwomen - The Highwomen
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    • The Highwomen  The Highwomen  CD £12.99 / 2-LP £30.99
  • The Highwomen are Brandi Carlile, Amanda Shires, Natalie Hemby and Maren Morris – four women in the midst of stellar careers – and this collaboration represents as super a supergroup as you could ever wish for. The 12 songs on this eponymous album explore in vivid colour common themes such as motherhood, resilience, loss, heartache and humour, and include ‘If She Ever Leaves Me’, which may be the first openly gay song in country music. It’s an audio diary of the nuances of being a woman in 2019.
  • Black Star Riders - Another State Of Grace
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    • Black Star Riders  Another State Of Grace  CD £11.99 / LP £23.99
  • Black Star Riders’ fourth studio album, Another State Of Grace, builds on the accomplishments of All Hell Breaks Loose, The Killer Instinct and Heavy Fire – a canon that has paved the way for this band to be recognised as a powerful force in contemporary rock’n’roll.
  • Iggy Pop - Free
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    • Iggy Pop  Free  CD £12.99 / LP £22.99
  • Free is the follow-up to Iggy Pop’s 2016 rocker Post Pop Depression – and, in true Iggy style, the new album is completely different! Iggy has described this project as something liberating, and that the feeling of being, as the album title puts it, Free is important to him. He also described the album’s creation process as something that “just kind of happened,” alluding to the album’s themes of freedom.
  • Note: the LP is available on limited sky-blue vinyl.
  • Status Quo - Backbone
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    • Status Quo  Backbone  CD £12.99 / LP £22.99
  • With more than 118 million records sold, countless gold awards received and top 10 singles all over the world, there really is no need to introduce Status Quo. In spite of all that success, however, the band has always remained very down-to-earth and sympathetic. After more than half a century of existence, they are still the convincing live band they have always been, and now they rock like they have never done before. Backbone is the group’s 33rd studio album, featuring songs drawn from the classic partnership of Rossi and Young as well as contributions from the rest of the band.
 

 

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