Album: Adem, Takes (Domino)

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The Independent Culture

On Takes, nu-folk philosopher Adem takes time out from the space metaphors and cosmic speculations of 2006's Love and Other Planets to offer covers of some of his favourite songs from the Nineties – a decade when he was immersed in largely fun-free indie music, judging by his choices.

An instrumental palette based on harmonium, guitar, glockenspiel and banjo-ukulele suits some tracks better than others: the parched emotional terrain of PJ Harvey's "Oh My Lover" is rendered with subtlety and warmth, and the lonely plaint of Smashing Pumpkins' "Starla" comes via a repeatedly rising carillion of guitars, bells, bass and percussion that doesn't overpower the listener. The most startling transformation is that accorded Aphex Twin's "To Cure a Weakling Child/Boy Girl Song", which acquires an unexpectedly light, uplifting character.

Pick of the album:'To Cure a Weakling Child/Boy Girl Song', 'Oh My Lover', 'Starla'

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