Basement Jaxx Unveil Zephyr, the Soundscape

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In a world of electro-dance pop, Basement Jaxx have always played a more human foil to that other duo of machine-men, Daft Punk. And while Daft Punk may have taken the lead in defining the cross-over genre both groups play in, Basement Jaxx have been sure not to settle for second seed.

Last month brought their fifth album, Scars, heavy with cameos from Sam Sparro, Yoko Ono, Grace Jones, Santigold, Cindi Lauper and Kelis. A steady stream of flashy videos, warm and kaleidoscopic beats and favorable acclaim has kept the web spinning.

And before its showed any signs of stopping, the boys are back:

Simon Ratcliffe and Felix Buxton have put their “soundscape” EP, Zephyr, on their site for streaming until it’s 2010 release. They told Pitchfork that it’s “Music to listen to at home and just kind of close your eyes to,” and from what we’ve heard, that seems about right — it’s definitely something of a departure from their traditionally maximal leanings. Culled from their work on Scars, and taken down a notch or two, this slower tempo makes it finally possible to take in all the lush grove without breaking a sweat.