Wax Tailor

A patchwork of film and TV samples, scratches, and elegant baroque instrumentation on Hope & Sorrow follows French turntablist/producer Wax Tailor's 2005 debut, which isn't entirely different from this latest effort. Two years ago, Tailor employed looped keyboard melodies and cello flourishes on his breakout Tales of Forgotten Melodies LP, a downtempo collection of moody instrumentals that was sometimes weighed down by heavy cinema sample use, but his orchestral touches really balance things out. Hope & Sorrow finds Tailor using fewer dialogue clips and a wider range of tempos and colorful arrangements. Soulstress Sharon Jones gives a commanding performance on "The Way We Lived," a jittery assortment of multiple sampled sources, smoky-hotel lounge organ, and Tailor's ever-shifting drum breaks. Alongside French vocalist Charlotte Savary, though, Tailor is stunning. He matches her sensual delivery with rich backdrops of strings, chimes, and playful bass lines ("The Man With No Soul") as well as with stuttering beats and horror film gloom ("Alien In My Belly"). An album's worth of such chemistry couldn't possibly turn out bad, and Mr. Tailor and Ms. Savary should mull it over.


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