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An unrequited 'Love Affair' for this Valentine's Day

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In these vexing times for the music industry, I guess it’s not a surprise to discover a highly talented act that’s getting shut out or ignored by the system. That doesn’t make it any less frustrating. Take Hercules & Love Affair, a project masterminded by Brooklyn DJ Andy Butler. Hercules’ fantastically catchy neo-disco has been painting the blogosphere red for months now, and it’s been on permanent repeat on my iTunes lately. On March 10, a full-length debut will go on sale everywhere in the world — except in the U.S., where Hercules has yet to secure a distribution deal. C’mon, American record-biz people, I’m begging you! This state of Affairs is pathetic!

Luckily, there’s plenty of awesome music from Hercules & Love Affair for you to explore online while I go sit in the corner and smack my head against the wall. For my money, the obvious standout is the lead single, “Blind,” in which guest vocalist Antony Hegarty (of Antony & the Johnsons) is reborn as a dancefloor deity. It’s a real revelation: Antony’s rich, mournfulvoice always works wonders on sad ballads, but I for one had no idea it’d sound this perfect over a driving, brassy beat. Check it out for yourself by playing the song’s European video (below), a not-quite-NSFW orgiastic dream sequence straight out of a Fellini film or Kubrick’s Eyes Wide Shut. And if you love “Blind” as much as I do, go ahead and use the comments section to pledge you’ll buy Hercules & Love Affair’s album when (or if) it’s finally available at non-import prices!

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