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THIEVERY CORPORATION, eighteenth street lounge music/red musical kristoff sareky   Eric Hilton and Rob Garza say, in a recent interview by The Balde, that Thievery Corporation's latest record, "The richest man of Babylon", is a clear sign of the maturity they've reached in their music. The new LP is a mixture of rock, dub, psychedelia, latin and electronic music and follows on from their previous album "The Mirror Conspiracy" which sold over 350,000 copies worldwide. ERIC HILTON and ROB GARZA
You’ve used several languages on the record and it also seems that the quality of the lyrics is becoming more and more important. What are your songs about? What is the message?
The lyrics are getting more important, on songs like "State of the union" & "Richest man" there is more of a social and political consciousness. I think we wanted to be a little more reflective given the current atmosphere.

How and when did you first get together?
We first got together in 1995, we were introduced by a mutual friend. We discussed our influences which at that time there wasn’t the current musical scene that there is today., and we decided to try and do music. Here we are almost 8 years later.

What made you fans of warm and upbeat rhythms like latin jazz and bossa nova?
This music was always subtle, beautiful, and polyrythmic. I grew up around a lot of this music when I was very young, only to rediscover it in my late teens.

Arabic culture and music is also present in your music. Is electronic music a meeting point for types of music that, on the surface, have very little in common?
I think that all music is a representation of different ideas, styles and cultures coming together, whether it’s Elvis Presley, Joao Gilberto or Manu Chao.

Where is electronic music heading today?
To the same place we’re all heading... HELL (just kidding!)

What’s the creative process behind the writing of your songs?
Each song evolves very differently. That’s what I enjoy about the way we do music. Inspiration can come from anywhere, beats, instruments, voices, samples, wherever.

There seems to be a kind of intentional musical archaeology on the LP "Sounds from the Verve Hi-Fi". Is the intention there to dig up forgotten big names from the past that young people today don’t know?
We find this music to be timeless and if we can just point people in an interesting direction in order to rediscover these beautiful sounds than that’s a wonderful thing.

What places, clubs and festivals have you gigged at around the world?
All over. There are too many to name, and I don’t wanna get nostalgic.

What kind of expectations has the new record generated in the group, especially when you consider the great reception that "Mirror Conspiracy" received?
We try not to expect too much, that way it’s all icing on the cake.