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Boris de Vries

Syro period interviews

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afx boxset / ambient works era tunes to come out! fuck yeah. funny dude, love the terrible translation from google

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Oh man I love guugle tranlate. How quickly it veers from sense to nonsense. Hot potato in the throat.

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Chemtrails is rather a quaint belief compared to what's really going on.

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To keep things a bit organized and to not let the interviews get lost in the many threads, I'll post the translation that Toastmann just made (thanks btw, you beat me to it :) ) here. FYI, this is the second part of the outtakes of the Oor interview by Koen Poolman. I'll link to both parts in the OP of this thread.

Also, I'll be receiving the full Oor interview (that excludes these two parts) asap so I'll try and translate that again!

Here's Toastmann's translation of Oor Interview - Bonus Beats (Part 2)

From today you may: talk, write, tweet, cheer about Syro. The new record has arrived.
To rise the tension arround Syro - the title being a self-invented word from one of his sons - a little further,
we'll rewind our interviewtape back once more for a real (exclusive) longread.
He is alive and well! Three days after his 43th birthday Richard D James (18 augustus 1971) in absolute secrecy recieved a handful of journalist to talk
about his comeback and his long awaited album Syro. OOR's Koen Poolman was the very first one to talk. The first Aphex Twin interview in 10 years of silence.
It turned out to be one and a half hour of spectacular fireworks. In OOR 9 (from Thursday 11 september you can find OOR 9 in the kiosk)
we bring you the interview, here is part 2 of our outtakes. Part 1, where James talks about the curious artwork of Syro and the end of his
Rephlex label can be found HERE. Our review of Syro can be found
HERE. And below we'll bring up some themes that were also raised during the open-hearted and notably
personal conversation with our friend.
APHEX TALKS ABOUT... COLLECTING RECORDS
What do you want to say to Minecraft-millionaire Markus Persson, who paid 46.300 dollar on eBay for an ultra rare test pressing of your classic Caustic Window LP[from 1994]?
"Why not? Thats what I would say! I recently paid 200 pounds for an oldschool jungle record. Fucking good 12-inch! Can never be found on the
net, not even a shit copy. It's never for sale online. I saw the record come by for sale on Discogs and though: I'm having that."
I think 200 dollars is a lot of money for two tracks.
Corrective voice:"200 pounds. And it was so worth it. I learned at young age that such things are worth way more than money.
I still remember: when I was seventeen my friend had a record of Mike Dunn, Tracks That Move Ya, one of the better Chicago-acid. It was
unobtainable in Cornwall, but he had it! I asked if I could take it from him. He said: 30 pounds! And that was a lot of money back then,
I only had 5 pounds in my wallet. He said: take it or leave it. And I said: Ah,you fucking cunt, here you go! I borrowed the money from
my mom or my sister. He laughed his head off: you are such an idiot! 30 pounds! But I still remember thinking at that moment: Yes, idiot, sure. But
I have that record now and you dont... You just have some paper in your pocket. I have the records, so fuck you! And that has always been my
mentality. Sure there is a limit on what amount to spend on a record, but..."
Are you a fanatic record collector?
"Yes, absolutely"
How large is your collection?
"I have no idea, I have never counted them"
Ten thousand?
"Yes, certainly. I dont think I have the same amount as some profesional collectors... I'm no archiver. I dont collect to collect,
I have to like the record."
You dont collect stamps.
"No. I'm a fancier. I also collect equipment, but it has to be functional, that's what it's about. I collect records because I want to
hear them. I never bought a record because I liked the artist. I've bought records from artists I like and it turned out to be a shitty record.
That's not the kind of record I'm looking for, so I toss it away immidiately. Or I'll keep it to remind myself the record is rubbush and I certainly
dont need to buy another copy. That happens to me sometimes, because I forgot I already checked it out and immidiately tossed it away.
Then I thought: He, I dont have this one! And then you play it and you know: oh yes, I already had this one and it sucked."
I stopped buying Total Science 12-inches when I had more then fifty. Then I really didnt hear the difference.
"That's something I have never done. When I like something, I always check what kind of other records there are on the label, but if I dont like it,
I wont buy it. My friend Grant[Wilson-Claridge, the co-runner of the Rephlex-label] did do that. That turned out well, because when I was at Grant's home
he had everything on Warp. I would listen to these records and thought: Oh wow... and I was thinking everything on Warp was good! But it turns out
there is rubbish on Warp too! I'm so happy you have all these records, so I can listen to them and never have to buy them! A lot of collectors
dont even listen to their records, they just want the record for their collection. A little bit of cleaning, new plastic wrapper and... it's mine!"
APHEX TALKS ABOUT... HIS ANTHOLOGY
Who makes the selection when you scrape an album together from the shelves?
"I do that myself, on my own. I have done with friends in the past, but I wont do that anymore. The difficulty mainly lies in the amount,
there are so many tracks to choose from. And honestly, I'm more organized with vinyl and mp3's than with my own recordings. I still regularly
lose tracks. Then I dont know that I saved it on a machine and I'll overwrite it. That happens way too often. And it only got worse now I collect
everything on the computer. I have files laying around everywhere, and at one point I dont really know where everything is located.
In the past eveyrthing was so much easier. When I still worked with a DAT-machine, everything was stored on DAT-tapes and I had the certainty
that I could find a track on the last place I left it: at the end of the tape. That tape can be extracted from the cartridge. On the computer
you cant see where trakcs are, they are invisible. You can erase the life's work of a man with one push of the button. When you are drunk,
you dont know what you are doing. I agreed with myself I'll never sit in front of a computer when drunk."
Did it ever happen to you?
"I probably have erased something that shouldnt have been erased. You think: didn't I have a track somewhere that... and then you search trough your files,
but you'll never find it. When making music, it's no different. It is searching, but will you ever find it? You never know if you'll get somewhere with
searching. Your best tracks only make themselves known to you after a certain amount of time, not when producing. You have no idea when you are producing...
That's something I learned over the years. The tracks you knowingly plan and work on very structurely, arent usually the best trakcs.
I dont even know when I made my best trakcs, these are tracks that I didn't really notice at the time. And that's pretty scary, because those are
usually the tracks I lose the easiest."
"When you have all your tracks on a computer, you can without effort scroll trough your collection and craft all kinds of dummy albums.
That's the only thing I still use a computer for nowadays. I do that regularly, compiling albums. I recently tried to craft an oldschool compilation.
I literally have hundreds of tracks from around Selected Ambient Works 85-92. But after three hours I already gave up. I tried it a few more times, but I just
cant get trough that pile of music. After three hours I dont even know why I'm doing this, it feels so pointless"
Was this for your own pleasure or for a commercial release?
"For an release. I'm thinking of releasing a boxset. But it feels a bit like you died, isn't it? That's what I told Warp. They said: you should put a gravestone
on it! But I have already done that.[on the cover of the Girl/Boy single you can find a graveston of his stillborn brother who would have been named Richard James].
I'm not sure what to do with it. Rephlex stopped, so that's not really and option. I still have some other ideas though, maybe I'll release some stuff anonimously.
That's always fun, to see what happens. I think I'll go that way."
APHEX TALKS ABOUT... THE TUSS
Talking about anonity: you never officially confirmed you are behind the two EP's from 2007, from The Tuss(credited to Karen Tregaskin). Now that I've heard Syro, I can almost certainly say you are The Tuss. Some tracks are obviously The Tuss extensions.
"The Tuss wasn't completely anonymous, there were enough cloues to recognize me in it. But you are right, my new work is an extension on The Tuss. It went on from those ones.
The electromechanical tracks of course not, but I have already put some of those on Drukqs."
The sound of The Tuss and thus Syro tends a bit to the more groovy, funky take on acid from your buddy Luke Vibert.
"Yes, I can hear that. We influence eachother constantly. Luke's work has always been an influence. But he get's his inspiration for a big part from hip-hop and I dont listen to hip-hop.
So if there is any hip-hop in my music, blame Luke."
APHEX TALKS ABOUT.. KANYE WEST
What did you think about Kanye West sampling your Avril 14th[from Drukqs] in his Blame Game on his last album My Beautiful Twisted Reality?
"He tried to get away with it without paying! Weirdo. They sent me a demo which was really, really badly sampled. They just had it timestrecthed, it was aweful.
It would literally take me one minute to do it proper. But they ignored me and wouldnt negotiate about a price. In the end I let myself be fobbed with a tip. Assholes!"
APHEX TALKS ABOUT... SHOWS
Will there be a new visual campaign for Syro?
"We are working on a new campaign. I want to work again with my friend Weirdcore(http://www.weirdcore.tv/), who also handles the visuals at my shows.
We are going to do some mixes together. I'm going to craft some mixtapes at home, because I haven't done that in years. I think I am going to put something on the 'net with him.
I wanted to do that years ago. At concerts I can't really see all the things he does, it's all happening on the screens behind me. He can hear me, but I can't see how he anticipates on that.
We have put a screen on the podium some time, but they forgot to connect it... I still wasn't able to see it! Very frustrating. I really want to stand were he stands, between the people in the first rows.
I dont want to stand on the podium, but just in front. When you perform live, it's no problem. But when you deejay, what really is less difficult than performing live, it's practically impossible because of the delay in the speakers.
It just doesnt work. You need to have your turntables behind the speakers, with stage monitors. When the speakers are just as far as the chair over there[points at an empty chair about a metre away] then you already have 5 miliseconds delay.
I did try it once in front of the speakers, but it still wasnt enough. The only alternative if you want to stand between the people on the front row, is to play live instead of deejaying, so I think I might do that again."
How concrete are these plans?
"I did a few sneaky mini-performances whilst I was deejaying. I had a computer next to me. But that doesn't really count. It will require an immense amount of planning and thus time if I really want to do that, and the time I spent on that
I rather be in my studio, making music. The chance of me doing more instalation-like performances is probably bigger. "
APHEX TALKS ABOUT... THE VOICES IN HIS HEADS
You use a lot of voices on Syro.
"I always used a lot of voices"
But now more than ever, it seems?
"Perhaps it's a bit poppy, on my own way."
How many voices are from yourself?
"Probably the most. My father and mother are sampled in onse song, let me think... in Xmas Eve, the second song of Syro. You can hear them briefly. I want to use more of their voices. I have an entire samplebank of their voices.
I want to do a track of my mother singing, without changing much on the voice. I have something with family and voices. I'm always looking for harmonic similarities in voices. It's in the genes with families.
I remember clearly, my ex-wife and her sisters and her mother, their voices were so similar! I annalyzed them on the computer and they were almost identical. When you mixed their voices in one note they formed a beautiful harmony.
When you like someone, it has a lot to do with their voice. Ofcourse appearance is important too, as is smell but the voice is very important. I really believe when you both sing the same note on the same pitch and it still sounds bad, then something
will be wrong with your children, haha! Thats my personal, totally not scientifically acclaimed theory. But I am almost certain it is true."
Would you also use a voice of someone you dont know, or has there to be an emotional charge to it?
"Almost all voices on Syro come from my family. My wife and children can be heard too."
You have said once that your singing voice in Come To Daddy was just a lazy trick.
"It was, really. It was a cheap way to vent all my anger. It's very easy to vent your emotions with vocals, to sing what you feel and what you mean with that. I don't like to use vocals in the traditional sense.
The challenge is to communicate your feelings with your brain and with your programming. The challenge is to say this with music."
APHEX TALKS ABOUT... A NEW WINDOWLICKER?
Does Syro contain a hitsingle? Perhaps the fifth track: 180db_?
'A hitsingle?! I don't have one planned anyways. I dont think I wrote one. I did concider to just do it, to see how far I can come with that under my own terms. But I quickly abandoned the idea.'
I can see house-dj's like Fatboy Slim pick up a track like 180db_.
"Yes, it's a good track voor deejaying. I played it a lot in my dj-sets and Luke does play it too most of the times. It certainly works in a...[said with a hot potato in the throat] club enviroment."
Do you still go out sometimes?
"Oh yeah certainly. I mostly go to local festivals and some smaller festivals near here[Richard currently lives with his family in a small remote town not far from Glasfow]. My wife likes camping. Last time we went to a family festival.
It was pretty embarassing, I was with the kids and put up our tent next to another tent and the dude immidiately recognized me. He obviously didnt know what to say, so he was staring at me stupid all the time. Then you lay on the camping, with your wife
and children next to some idiot who is completely starstruc. That was weird."
APHEX TALKS ABOUT... THE MASK
Is Aphex Twin a project, or even a product?
"I dont know exactly. It's a public persona. It's the link between my inner world and the outside world. An interface for the communication with the rest of the world. It's better than under my own name, it makes it a bit less personal.
I pretty open-hearted in this interview, usually I'm very fond on my privacy. I dont like talking about myself at all. When someone in town asks about my background, I always try to turn the conversation to another direction. Or I walk away.
It's just none of their business. I dont want to talk about myself. This is the first time I've done in years. So yes, it's like a shield between me and the rest of the world. I wish I had never used my own name, that I would have also come up with a fake name for that.
But when I just started I never really thought about that. There has been a point in time where I really wanted to change my name, on my passport and all. But my mother didn't really like the idea. In hindsight I shouldnt have listened to her. It would have spared me
a lot of trouble and she would still be able to call me Richard - she wouldnt even have to know there is an other name in my passport. I'm curious how that would have turned out."
Quasi-philosophical:"In these times recognition is more of a disadvantage an advantage. When the end of times arrives, well-known people die first."
Do you associate Aphex Twin with work?
"That feeling does stick to it a bit, yes. At the same time, the amount of fame I get is controllable. I'm not that famous. There are still way more people that dont know me than that do.
It depends on between what kind of people I find myself in. It makes sense I get recognized more in a recordshop or on a festival than on the streets."
Soon your face will be on the cover of Q Magazine!
"Yes, thats an other story. Then even my fucking neighbours will start: Oh, I saw you... But it's not a clear photo, my face is distorted. So hopefully they wont recognize me"
Do the parents at the school of your children know you are Aphex Twin?
"One does. The rest doesn't know, thank god. The most dont know anything of music. One of the parents at our school - it's a small school with only 30 children - is the governor I think.
He approached me the first day, recognized me immidiately. I though: What the fuck? That dude is at least seventy! He told me one of his daughters married one of the Chemical Brothers.
How weird is that?! There live about 300 people in my village, everyone knows eachother. I do my best to remain anonymous and that works reasonable until now. They are not starstruck.
When you live in such small community, you are just one of them."
APHEX TALKS ABOUT.. THE APOCALYPSE
Whats the worst that could happend to you?
"I have fears the world could just end tomorrow. That feeling gets strong and stronger. That we are all plunging into chaos. That's why I try to enjoy every minute I have. I'm here in this
chic hotel with a beautiful view over Westminster, I open the curtains in the morning and what do I see? The first thing I see is a grid of fucking chemtrails[The term chemtrail is derived from conspiracy theories that state that there is the deliberate spreading
of certain chemicals in the atmosphere from jet aircraft, the contrails these substances can camouflage. Most of these conspiracy theories assume that the government or NATO is responsible for the distribution of the chemicals - red].
My wife says I should stop about it. In Cornwall, were I'm from, we saw a lot of chemtrails. SHIT! They put chemtrails above Cornwall, they put them above Schotland. And then you visit London and it turns out to be much worse than here.
On the countryside you see a lot of chemtrails, it's just so obvious. A lot of people just dont believe you - you may also no believe in it - but we are getting showered! I dont know why, but it does happen! In London people are blind for them, perhaps because there is so much fog in the air.
But here in the countryside, and I live there for years, I just know that there are planes flying in and out, not much, at most a few per day, but they are not to be missed. And when you see them form a grid it's like: FUCK! I know for sure there is a global conspiracy behind it.[laughs uneasily]
This is were the interview turns very dark... they are showering us with chemicals! A lot of my friends tell me I'm just paranoid, that I'm in idiot. But now that they've seen it with their own eyes, they say: Ok, perhaps you are right. There are different conspiracies.
There are contrails and chemtrails. A contrail is a trail of an ordinary plane and disappears after a few minutes, depending on altitude and weather conditions. Very often you see two trails, one disappears after a few minutes and the other still remains after a few hours..."
This is where it turns completely X-Files...
"That's it exactly! It does happen and it's unbelievable that no one sees it! I find it absolutely terrifying. Recently I pointed it out to my neighbor, and he's definitely not a man to believe in conspiracy theories. He is a very sober person, a ruthless businessman
who I think finds me a weird dopehead. I would never ever start talking about something like that to him. But as he was mowing the lawn a few planes flew by. I said, Look at that! We both looked up, and after a few seconds he said:
Well, whatever it is they’re spraying on us, I’m sure it’s not fucking good.And then he went back to mowing his little lawn. Most people do not even bother to look at what is happening up. If you look on the internet, you can find out all about it.
There are two theories. The main theory is that it comes to geo-engineering. The powers that be do something with our atmosphere to cool it, perhaps with tiny aluminum particles. Tests have been done and the ground is full of aluminum.
The other theory is that it is [American agricultural giant] Monsanto, a company that has developed alumiuniumresistente plants.
The theory is that they are trying to destroy all natural plants so that the whole world has to buy genetically modifief seeds from Monsato. That's not even surprising. This is the logical conclusion of capitalism.
If food production falls in the hands of capitalism, they cant allow agriculture on the countryside still produces crops for nothing.
Then there has to be paid for the seeds. How can we do that? You know what, we just kill all the other plants! That's how they do it in third world countries. They give the farmers seeds, seeds that dont reproduce themselves. And make sure every farmer is dependent on them.
And that's where te point of asking money comes in. That's Monsanto."
Time to pack our bags to New-Zealand? Australia?
"It seems to happen in all NAVO-countries, so even there you wont be safe. The wind carries the chemicals around the globe anyway."
APHEX TALKS ABOUT... 2015
Ok, we're doomed. One last question though: any wishes for next year?
"That I find more time to make music. That's it."
To make music, or to share music?
"Sharing, absolutely. I'm in the mood now, so I'm going to bring out a lot of music."
Via Warp?
"Probably, otherwise I'll do so anonimously. A bit of both I think. I have everything ready, I want to release it now. For the journalist of the American rock magazine Rolling Stone Richard had words of similar meaning:
'I've got a few more things planned - at least a couple more albums, some EPs, things like that. Some more dance-y things I did at about years ago. Experimental things, noise things, weird things. Shit Loads of stuff.
They're all pretty much ready to go. I have not mastered them yet, but I shouldering get that done pretty quick.'
It seems therefore that it doesnt stick to only one spring. There blooms something beautiful. A new Aphex-time. Despite or thanks to Monsanto. "

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Guest Toastmann

Cool. Are you going to buy the OOR magazine this thursday, herr jan?

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Hopefully the day before at the Utrecht listening session :)

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"You can erase the life's work of a man with one push of the button when you are drunk,

you dont know what you are doing. I agreed with myself I'll never sit in front of a computer when drunk."

 

 

makes me wonder how many masterpisses he deleted

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Chemtrails most IDM 2015

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Btw, hot potato in the throat is a Dutch saying that means talking really posh. Bit weird for the English to read I guess :)

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potatoes

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wait, like 2 seconds after he mentions the chemical brothers he rants about chemtrails? fucking mental

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Guest Toastmann

Btw, hot potato in the throat is a Dutch saying that means talking really posh. Bit weird for the English to read I guess :)

It's a saying in more European countries though, mainly scandinavian(Like the danes talking with a potato in their throat) but you are right.

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Guest Phonejack

He's obviously taking the piss with that chemtrail rant.

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He's obviously taking the piss with that chemtrail rant.

On the contrary, he was actually serious and sincere during the whole interview.

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"my favorite musician is actually a fucking idiot", lol, what a realization to have in mind while waiting for the highly anticipated new album...

Edited by eugene

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Btw, hot potato in the throat is a Dutch saying that means talking really posh. Bit weird for the English to read I guess :)

It's a saying in more European countries though, mainly scandinavian(Like the danes talking with a potato in their throat) but you are right.

 

 

We say it in french as well.

"Il parle avec une patate dans la bouche."

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He's obviously taking the piss with that chemtrail rant.

 

Why would he take the piss? I'm with Her Jann on this one, he does sound serious and concerned. Many people believe in chemtrails because they see it every day. It all started with Wilhelm Reich tho, who was a keen observer of the blue sky back in the 1950's. Half a century later, it's become kind of the equivalent of UFOS. You have MANY crackpots who believe it and a few scientists who are doing serious research and many of us scratching our head. Also, if I can add: it's a well-known "fact" that heavy psychedelic users, once they get to their 40's, have developed all kinds of "original" ideas about the world. Sometimes for the better, sometimes for the worse. He seems to be fairly intelligent and articulate, that's what strikes me the most. He certainly doesn't sound like an idiot. Who cares what he believes in, really? He was doing an interview, not a Ted Talk.

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He's obviously taking the piss with that chemtrail rant.

 

Why would he take the piss? I'm with Her Jann on this one, he does sound serious and concerned. Many people believe in chemtrails because they see it every day. It all started with Wilhelm Reich tho, who was a keen observer of the blue sky back in the 1950's. Half a century later, it's become kind of the equivalent of UFOS. You have MANY crackpots who believe it and a few scientists who are doing serious research and many of us scratching our head. Also, if I can add: it's a well-known "fact" that heavy psychedelic users, once they get to their 40's, have developed all kinds of "original" ideas about the world. Sometimes for the better, sometimes for the worse. He seems to be fairly intelligent and articulate, that's what strikes me the most. He certainly doesn't sound like an idiot. Who cares what he believes in, really? He was doing an interview, not a Ted Talk.

 

 

I don't think anyone was doubting that he's intelligent, though. I mean, I was also struck by how articulate he is in this interview. Obviously he's a thoughtful guy; that is, after all, one of the reasons why we're his fans (this characteristic adds to his creative output). However, he has a history of lying about his personal life and playing games during interviews. This is just the sort of thing you could easily imagine him joking around about, just for shits and giggles. I'm taking this part of the interview with a grain of salt. Not that I would hold it against RDJ if he really believed that stuff: some of my closest friends believe the weirdest shit, and we bicker about it all the time. It's part of what makes life interesting.

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Well, he also apparently confirmed the ex-wife thing, unless he his just messing with disinformation or something was changed in translation.

 

I agree with the replies above, on paper the whole interview seems genuine and frank, chemtrails included.

 

Anyways, thanks Herr Jan and Toastmann!

Edited by jchgf

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"And below we'll bring up some themes that were also raised during the open-hearted and notably personal conversation with our friend."

 

disarming

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Well he did talk about the new world order 4 years ago...

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I have family and friends who believe in the "mankind hasn't been to the moon" conspiracies.

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All our individual beliefs are most certainly false so who cares

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