Banco De Gaia - Last Train to Lhasa | RECORD STORE DAY

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Looking at this nation's leaders, it's highly likely any of these people have ever danced. Hell, our fearless Attorney General John Ashcroft thinks dancing is a sin alongside drinking, smoking and sculpting a representation of the unclothed human body, which makes one wonder about other cultures older than ours, where dancing was revered as something sacred. Nowadays, dance has become a form of recreation, but there were a few techno producers in the mid-nineties that tried to update that notion of sacrality for the modern era. One of the best was Toby Marks, who hit his high-water mark in 1995 with this still-potent dedication to the universal rhythm. Thankfully free of the New Age clichat usually drag these productions down, Last Train manages to play to the tastes of worldbeat and techno with equal ease.

At this point, Marks had a pretty big bone to pick with China and its ongoing oppression of the Tibetan people-a fact remarked upon in this album's liner notes. The music itself steers clear of obvious polemics, however, preferring to create catchy and moving dance tracks that have endured the years quite well. The "Duck! Asteroid" remix of "Kincajou" will delight those fond of Orb-oriented ambient space jams, and "Kuos" features as wicked a breakdown as you'll ever hear in ethnotechno. Indeed, this is the sort of album that makes you want to listen to a hundred more just like it, until you realize that there's only one that really does.