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The Wedding Present’s latest album, “El Rey,” is one of the best records I’ve heard over the last few years and has also been widely lauded in the British music media. Criminally, it has not been picked up for distribution in Japan. But you’ll be able to hear the new songs at the band’s upcoming Japan shows (their first here since 1993), and, if you’re smart, you’ll get on the Net now and buy it.

The eighth studio album from this legendary band — who took over the mantle of Britain’s top indie group after the demise of The Smiths — is an astounding return to top form. Yes, forget 1987’s hallowed debut “George Best” — “El Rey” is the Fernando Torres of recently released albums, boasting a treasure chest of sterling songwriting skills that silences the opposition.

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