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Terracotta - Terracotta (Globalbeat)

World music isn't something that gets a lot of coverage in the music press, which is disappointing because at its best it can be extremely relaxing and engaging.

Craig Preuss and John Altman - the men behind Terracotta - are accomplished musicians in their own right but when they come together the result isn't exactly awe-inspiring. At its best, the songs sound like a film score. Therefore it's no surprise to discover that four of the songs were included in the film "Bhaji on the Beach" which was released by Channel 4. There are also several moments on the album that are so trip-hoppy Massive Attack would be proud of them.

Unfortunately, the songs are overlong and by the album's end the feeling is one of relief rather than of satisfaction. Starting off with a song over 14 minutes is a poor idea and ending with a 16 minute song is even worse.

You do find yourself going back to this album for its positives but the urge to hit the skip button proves too enduring, too often. Worth checking out if you're into world music but stay away if you're an average music lover.

by Neil Callanan