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music

Tortoise

Bongload. Try saying that word a couple of times, let it roll around on your tongue: bongload, bongload. . . . Listening to TORTOISE, you get the feeling that the guys in this Chicago band use it a lot (both the word and the stuff). If this sounds like a criticism, it’s not, really: the oceanic, spaced-out instrumentals that comprise their three albums (1994’s Tortoise, 1995’s Rhythms, Resolutions & Clusters, and the recent Millions Now Living Will Never Die) simply happen to be the perfect accompaniment to the rustling of plastic baggies and the muffled inhalations of bud appreciation; to the scritch, scritch, poof of striking matches, and the burble, burble, slorrp of the anticlimactic moment at hand.

Of course, this is no accident. Drugs and rock, like drugs and jazz, have always been inseparable; postrock genres like dub, ambient, and trance are no different (you have to listen to

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