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The K Recommends a Record (November)

Steely Dan – Aja

Steely Dan could’ve been fine if they settled into just being a fun dad rock band. Their debut album Can’t Buy a Thrill proves this, as their immediate staying power is undeniable in their catchy hooks and engaging grooves. But with Aja (pronounced like Asia), the band’s sixth studio album, Steely Dan elevated to unprecedented heights, delivering some wildly compelling and high concept rock music. Each of the seven tracks on this album are a mini odyssey, with complex and rich instrumentation that fuses elements of jam band rock, jazz, funk, and bossa nova. Few albums from the seventies are this creatively indulgent, as Steely Dan showcase more talent, ambition, and pure adoration for music than ever before.

Aja also happens to be highly revered in the audiophile community, making it an absolute treasure to own on vinyl. This wax sounds absolutely pristine, with every intricate layer ringing with even more charm and color than on digital. More importantly, Aja is the quintessential Steely Dan record and the perfect starting point to their discography, something that any collector and music nerd should invest in. Your inner dad will surely thank you for this purchase, and if you don’t dance uncontrollably to “Peg” then I don’t know what to tell you.

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