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Owen Pallett 

Heartland (Domino)

Final Fantasy is no more, but fans need not worry, Pallett's compositional talents still soar higher than an imaginary video game world, though Heartland is set in another land, far, far away. One of the few musicians who can successfully work to a theme without sounding too contrived, this time our dreamy orchestral pop virtuoso inserts himself into a complicated love requiem with a deranged farmer named Lewis, who lives in Spectrum. Combining astonishing looping pedal work with Pallett's usual orchestral prowess and desire to push pop music---and its listeners---to the next level, Heartland bleeds from the rare radio sing-along "Tryst With Mephistopholes," to the dramatically experimental ("Mt. Alpentine") to the electronic-dance layering of "The Great Elsewhere."

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