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December 1999

Isotope 217
Utonian Automatic
Thrill Jockey

Chicago's Isotope 217 (Jeff Parker, guitar; Rob Mazurek, cornet; Dan Bitney, drums; Matthew Lux, bass; John Herndon, percussion; Bundy K. Brown/John McEntire, uncredited keyboards, programming, effects) are rocking some heady spirit-cosmic groove variations on the Tony Williams Lifetime/Frank Zappa swang ("LUH", "Audio Champion" in particular) on their album Utonian Automatic (Thrill Jockey, thrill 063, 43:39). Whether spontaneously combusting/reinventing Roland Bautista, Donald Byrd, Airto ("Looking After Life on Mars"; can I get a remix?) or conjuring a graveyard-misty zombie slow drag ("New Beyond"), Isotope 217 never fails to get you flowing.

Originally published in December 1999
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