Ilya – They Died For Beauty

Sleek debut from Bristolian trio

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Trip hop is the genre that no longer dare speak its name, and in fairness most of its practitioners have outgrown the moniker. This goes, too, for Ilya, whose sumptuous “The Revelation” EP represented a promise only partly fulfilled on this debut album. Mournful blasts of Mexican horn, Balalaikian flourishes occur sparsely against a languid, velvet backdrop as husky vocalist Joanna Swan coos and swoons elegantly. It works brilliantly on, for example, the single “Bellissimo”, but just occasionally these songs amount to no more than the sum of their tastefully assembled parts.

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