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Morcheeba was originally part of the mid '90s rush of "trip-hop" acts that came charging out of the U.K. to deliver an answer to mainstream American audiences' question of "what do we listen to after the rave?" The heavy beats and heady atmospherics of their first hit "Trigger Hippie" in 1995 came to define the enigmatic and often derided trip-hop label. Lumped with fellow Brits Portishead, Massive Attack, and Tricky (not bad company at all), Morcheeba received wide recognition and acclaim for their debut album Who Can You Trust?

Five albums later, Morcheeba has come a long way from the ominous trip-hop pigeonhole which some of their peers never managed to shake, most recently arriving at an elegant kind of pop soul with 2002's Charango. Composed of the brothers Paul and Ross Godfrey and jazzy diva vocalist Skye Edwards, the group seems to continually reinvent itself with every new album -- sometimes quite dark, other times almost blissful and poppy, all the while retaining Edwards's characteristic lullaby vocals.

As a result, surprises are in store for those who expect Parts of the Process, Morcheeba's 2003 best-of collection, to consist exclusively of downtempo heady beats. Instead they'll be treated to a disc of surprising range and depth. Parts of the Process has upbeat pop songs ("Rome Wasn't Built in a Day," from 2000's Fragments of Freedom), beatless ballads, ("Over and Over," from '98's Big Calm), and even an acoustic guitar and meditative guest vocals from Lambchop's Kurt Wagner ("What New York Couples Fight About") to offset the chilled tracks of mellow beats. The result is an eclectic, highly listenable album.

The two new tracks are clearly not the focus here as "What's Your Name," featuring an out-of-place American urban pop sound and a seemingly tacked on guest appearance by Big Daddy Kane, and "Can't Stand It," the album's lilting string-filled closer, prove pleasant but somewhat forgettable. Instead it's the older songs, and their ability to stand the test of time, that really shine on Parts of the Process.

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