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Senseless Empire


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Limited to 500 copies only.
Silk-screened sleeve. 
Highly recommended by Strangeworld. 

Soft Location's first two LPs — Diamonds and Gems (Senseless Empire, 2005) and Fools (Physical Things, 2013) sounded like some lost 1980s pop classic with baroque 1960s elements woven into its DNA.

Kathy Leisen started Soft Location in 2002 after Matt Kantor, an old pal from high school, gave her a guitar and she figured out how to play it. A similar thing happened a few years ago, when a different friend gave her an electric piano, on which she now plays what producer and fan Warren Defever calls "made-up chords." Leisen's music isn't avant-garde; it's pop music, and is meant to be. And her songs are all love songs, even — hard to be more conventional than that.

But the songs have their own internal herky-jerky rhythms, and often resist traditional verse-chorus-verse structure. There's the sense that this is the only way this band can exist, that their aesthetic choices are probably not even something they talk about much. When you see Soft Location play live, the keyboardist holds his instrument in his lap and it's falling off his legs the whole time, as if no one ever told him that a keyboard stand is a thing you can use. The drummer plays left-handed while sitting on milk crates in a way that looks a bit awkward. It's so good.

Soft Location is Ben Good on synthesizer; Matt Kantor on bass; Chris Morris on drums and percussion; and Leisen on guitar, keyboards, and vocals.

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