Blue States : Nothing Changes Under The Sun

Greek chap's sophisticated chillage

First released to rabid critical acclaim last year, multi-instrumentalist Andy Dragazis’ debut – a teary-eyed, cinematic swoosh of chilled Air – has been a real slow burner; word-of-mouth and several high-profile remixes (BDB, Future Sound Of London) helping it hover in the public conscious.

Which is about what it deserves. Superior quality aural wallpaper, it is packed with charm, ideas and funk. Referencing John Barry’s strings, DJ Shadow’s crunchy, offset rhythms and Pork Recordings’ peculiarly pastoral jazz-folk, the likes of ‘Your Girl’, 21st Century Billie Holiday (in liquid nitrogen, natch), sweeping opener ‘Arion’, the whimsical trumpet-led ‘Trainer Shuffle’ or ‘Elios Therepia’ – The Smiths

had they been an instrumental Greek skiffle band – see Dragazis pull off cheeky, poignant and stylishly seductive.

Certain tracks, however, are just too pleasant. There’s a slightly cloying Bruce Hornsby & The Range quality to the pianos on ‘Diamente’, while others

sound both slightly kitsch

and terribly adult, with their

soft-focus ambience and easy listening touches.

Probably the best album ever by someone who cites both The Shadows and Vangelis as influences, Dragazis is clearly one to watch. ‘Nothing Changes…’, however, is good rather than classic. Unless chilled is your permanent setting, rather than a state of mind.

Tony Naylor