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Listen2This* WHAT'S ROCKING OUR WORLD

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ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY Listen2This* WHAT’S ROCKING OUR WORLD

Plush mastermind Liam Hayes lives in Chicago. Many of the 30 or so musicians on FED, a horn- and string-packed curiosity — including Tortoise’s John McEntire and Jeff Parker — are closely associated with the Chicago scene. The music even sounds at times like a bizarro-world version of early Chicago — the band. So why is this CD unavailable in Chicago? Or, for that matter, anywhere in the Western Hemisphere? It’s a mystery. But while the Japan-only release is hard to find (try http://www.gemm.com), it’s worth tracking down. Hayes’ 1998 debut, More You Becomes You, didn’t fulfill the promise of two earlier singles, and neither, honestly, does Fed. Still, it’s an eccentric and often rewarding artifact, a lovingly excessive lark that will appeal to fans of studio-obsessed oddballs like Todd Rundgren. A wizard, for sure. A true star? Well, maybe in Japan.

*SELECTED COPIES OF EW NOW CONTAIN LISTEN2THIS, A MONTHLY SUPPLEMENT WITH EXPANDED COVERAGE OF ALTERNATIVE AND INDIE-MINDED MUSIC. VISIT EW.COM/REGISTER2LISTEN IF YOU’D LIKE TO RECEIVE LISTEN2THIS.

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