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  • 11i
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on February 13, 2008
With two releases under their belt, 2000s self-titled debut and 2002s sophomore effort Divine Operating System (D.O.S.), the Los Angeles duo delivers on their signature sound imbued with laid-back glamour, witty drama, seductive allure, and cinematic lushness.
The third release, after a five-year hiatus, maintains the band's previously established sultry, low key sound.
In doing so, they've produced 11 tracks that draw you into a world of swanky bars, minimalist design with ambient lighting and good-looking people sipping martinis.
"11i" sounds like a natural progression in that trajectory. As ever, the whispery, sensual vocals of Geri Soriano-Lightwood coo, croon, and playfully tease the listener while Ramin Sakurai's subtle, gently undulating beats and sparkling, atmospheric electronic textures provide the perfect framework.
On this album you will hear strings, Eastern instrumentation as well as plenty of tasteful ambience, blissed-out vocals and sleepy beats (not to mention a Toto-like guitar solo in "Oneness").
Unfortunately the low key seductive quality of the songs can be lost after listening to a few tracks, as they begin to blend in with each other. Fans of the genre will enjoy the album, however the casual listener should stick to a few tracks at a time.
"11i" is purportedly a concept album meant to document the various phases of time and feeling encountered over the course of a single day, but whether you pay attention to that theme or simply lie back and let the sounds envelop you, this is one big comfy chair of an album, something to sink into with hedonistic abandon.
In an interesting move, this lush album of entrancing lounge and downtempo electronica follows the chronological path of the day, opening with the track "The Light" and closing with "Lay Me Down".
There's no doubt the songs are well crafted and blend seamlessly from start to finish - they're layered with sophistication - but herein lies the problem. One can't help but feel it's all just a little too polished. Rather than conjuring up feelings of chilling out and relaxing, it feels passionless and homogenous.
"Our 2 previous albums have been collections of songs that we wrote during those periods of time", observes producer/programmer Ramin Sakurai. "This new album is more of a book with each song being a different chapter. "11i" is meant to be read cover to cover".
It's chill-out music, pure and simple. You can play it in a softly lit blue room with a mirrorball. You can let it fade into the background (which it does with great ease). Or you can take it in and let SBL's dreamy soul-pop take you to a less stressful place.
Which isn't a bad option.
Supreme Beings Of Leisure: Geri Soriano-Lightwood (vocals); Ramin Sakurai (various instruments, programming).
Additional personnel: Lili Hayden.
Stand out tracks: "This World" and "Angelhead"
Supreme Beings of Leisure
Divine Operating System
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on February 12, 2008
Bought IIi this morning and couldn't wait to pop it into the cd player. From start to finish, the album has their sexy and trademark sound, yet the songs are far less electronica based, meaning there are less dancy beats. The music is a little edgier and more ambient than before. My boyfriend and I rate it 5 stars, just because it's still so good, and worth the wait. Due to the slower-paced style, the album tends to drag on at times, longer than the previous two albums, although there are only 11 tracks. So far, there's only 1 version/edition of the CD, which is housed in a stunning digipak. The cover art is divine and stunning, featuring a charicature of Geri & Ramin. Very suave & sexy, just like they've always been...I must say. The duo definitely know how to sell themselves cleverly! :-)

The CD is simple (White background with red floral graphic). The booklet is 12 pages long, consisiting of only 4 photos (2 of Geri and 2 of Ramin, featuring closeups of their eyes on pages 2 and 3. Not too fancy and quite subtle, the packaging & design concept features a more abstract take. The booklet features full lyrics & liner notes. Regarding my opnion of the album itself, I think it's great, but it doesn't meet the standards of the previous albums. Track 11 ended too slow and the song just dragged on. I guess I feel this way because of the slow pace feel throughout the CD. Still loungy and sexy though, IIi will definitely grow on me. Most likely, my opinion above will not be the same after hearing the album 1 week later. But I know this album will be memorable as did the first two, for all SBOL fans. For now, my review reflects how I feel at the moment.

Tracklist:
01- The Light
02- This World
03- Mirror
04- Swallow (my favorite track)
05- Good
06- Pieces
07- Angelhead (Feat. Lili Haydn)
08- Ride
09- Oneness (Feat. Marty Friedman)
10- Everywhere
11- Lay Me Down
Produced, Mixed and Engineered by Ramin Sakurai
Co-Produced by Geri Soriano-Lightwood
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on March 1, 2009
I am very pleased with this purchase. I have the two previous albums, but was somewhat disappointed with the second one (I'd say 3.5/5). I hesitated before buying this last album, waited for some reviews. This album is great, just like the debut album. Sexy down tempo trip-hop. Exactly what I wanted.
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on May 10, 2008
I am not into trip hop music as I once was several years ago. The genre itself became its own worst enemy when every trip hop act that came out sounded like a clone of Portishead or Massive Attack. The redundancy is what killed my passion for the genre for the last few years. After enjoying Goldfrapp's most recent album SEVENTH TREE, I decided to check out the new Supreme Beings of Leisure album 11i when I saw it at my library. I loved the group's first album when it first came out. By the time the group's second album came out, my interest in the genre waned and I had moved on. I did hear samples of their last album and was not impressed by what little I heard.

Almost immediately, 11i reminded me what made me love Supreme Beings of Leisure which is the combination of the seductive vocals of Geri Soriano-Lightwood and the lush programming provided by Ramin Sakurai. Ramin effortlessly weaves world music with modern dance beats, with Geri's vocals, the duo creates an album suitable for background music at a cocktail party or a pan-Asian restaurant. The album isn't totally laid back. There are songs that will make the listener want to get up and dance like the groovy uptempo track "Good". It is a nice change of pace from the slick, laid back trip hop grooves of the album which sometimes proves to be a detriment to the group's music. The more laid back trip hop songs tend to sound alike which drags the album down a bit but overall 11i is a solid effort.
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on September 27, 2009
If you are a SBL fan this album is a treat. If you are considering getting this album get the first album from 2000 "Supreme Beings of Leisure" and listen to that one. Then get this one and every other album of theirs.
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on March 24, 2008
Five years is a long time to wait for a new album from a favorite artist, and with that time comes higher expectations. Surprisingly, SBL exceeds expectations and shows a new maturity both lyrically and in terms of musical skill.

The chief complaint among people I've introduced to the first two albums is that they're so repetitive. Yeah, we get it, you're never the same girl twice. Now what? Thankfully, 11i is far more rich and complex musically. It doesn't sound like they tried to fill out loops to get a song to four minutes. One of the highlights of the album is the last three songs, which take rare album continuity and mix a broad range of topics from inspiration to loss to inner peace. Slide guitar that wafts in and out of the background reminds me a bit of Tears for Fears while overall tight production weaves this great sonic treat of a melody above the beats. That's a true departure. I can't just label it electronic music anymore. "Angelhead," "Mirror" and "Everywhere" in particular are great standouts.

Lyrically, the album is far more personal, without being too poetic. You don't have to be cryptic to be artistic, and I love that about this album.

And yes, it's still sexy.
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on March 22, 2008
Like a good classy malt SCOTCH whisky. You have to sip it, endure the initial taste which disturbs the palate and wait for the warmth and subtle tones to fill your sences. Only after you have sipped and sipped and discovered the wonderful variation and quality of the genuine product can you truely apprieciate the depth of this album.
My suggestion, lie back with your headphones on and just listen. Tomorrow do the same and by day three you will have this on repeat, filling your room with sounds you have to listen to hear over and over.
If you have, and enjoyed previous SBL albums this is different, in the same way the other two are. If you don't have them, why not? Go buy them now and have three of the most unique and satisfying albums you can own.

Supreme Beings of Leisure

Divine Operating System

And this Album, 11i
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on March 25, 2010
This is the third and without a doubt the best album by SBL. Why? because this is an album, a complete thought from the first track to the last, it is not a bunch of random songs thrown together like previous "albums". If you pick it up it should be as an album, as the tracks are put in order and many run together. The tracks that stand out are many and the ones that don't take off are not bad tracks making you want to skip ahead, they just don't stand out.

I'm sure the record sounds even better if you're baked, but I haven't gotten there yet. I would recommend this if you need a cd that puts you in another place if you're stressed out. The music is "cool" there really just isnt anything like it, and that's a good thing.
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on February 18, 2008
I rarely take the time to share my feelings here, but...Wow!...am only halfway done listening to their new album, and have been blown away...their first 2 CDs are incredible, but this one is so solid, so layered...Geri's voice is in crisp, amazing form!

This band has grown so much, and their remix work is amazing too!

"Mirror" and "Swallow" have now changed my life: as well as all the other songs on this album!!!
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on April 2, 2008
Being a big fan of Supreme Beings of Leisure I regret that I waited so long to puchase this album. Its always nice to see an artists sound evole without losing the signature sound that put them on the map. I often wondered could these two get any better, losing their third member who went on to form Bittersweet. From the time I put 11i into the cd player I was at a loss for words. They seem to be at the pinnacle of their career, and after all the dust settles from 11i, Ill wonder can they get any better.
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