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Two Against Nature brought Steely Dan renewed commercial and critical success. Their first studio album after a 20-year hiatus, the album was released on February 29, 2000. At Metacritic.com, which assigns a rating on a scale of 100 to reviews from professional critics, the album drew a "generally favorable" average score of 77, based on 13 reviews.
Writing in March 2000 for The Village Voice, Robert Christgau applauded the music as an excellent "rock comeback" and a "jumpier and snappier, sourer and trickier and less soothing" iteration of the jazz pop featured on Steely Dan's 1977 album Aja, describing it as "postfunk." Stephen Thomas Erlewine of AllMusic appreciated the "sharp humor" in the lyrics, but was especially impressed by the music's "depth and character," as he observed "nearly endless permutations within their signature sound."
Analogue Productions is honored to reissue this Steely Dan album in a way that best shares the group's unmistakable sound with decades of devoted fans. This reissue is newly remastered from the original source and cut at 45 RPM. The dead-quiet double-LP, with the music spread over four sides of vinyl, reduces distortion and high frequency loss as the wider-spaced grooves let your stereo cartridge track more accurately. The result is more sonic punch and more expression is captured. The Quality Record Pressings 180-gram vinyl ensures a virtually silent playing surface.
Founded by core members Walter Becker and Donald Fagen, Steely Dan's popularity rose throughout the late 1970s on, and their seven albums over that period of time blended elements of jazz, rock, funk, R&B, and pop. Steely Dan created a sophisticated, distinctive sound with accessible melodic hooks, complex harmonies and time signatures, and a devotion to the recording studio. Becker and Fagen, with producer Gary Katz, gradually changed Steely Dan from a performing band to a studio project, hiring session musicians to record their compositions. The duo didn't perform live between 1974 and 1993. But their popularity nevertheless grew throughout the '70s as their albums became critical favorites and their singles became staples of Adult Oriented Radio and pop radio stations.
Becker (bass) and Fagen (vocals, keyboards) were the core members of Steely Dan throughout its incarnations. Since reuniting in 1993, Steely Dan has toured steadily and released two albums of new material, the first of which, Two Against Nature (2000) earned a Grammy Award at the 2001 ceremony for Album of the Year as well as three other Grammys: Best Pop Vocal Album, Best Engineered Album - Non-Classical, and Best Pop Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocal (for the single "Cousin Dupree"). Commercially, it peaked at No. 6 on the U.S. Billboard 200 chart and sold more than 1 million copies, earning a platinum certification from the Recording Industry Association of America.
After a brief battle with esophageal cancer, Walter Becker died on September 3, 2017 at the age of 67. Steely Dan has sold more than 40 million albums worldwide and were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in March 2001. VH1 ranked Steely Dan at No. 82 on their list of the 100 Greatest Musical Artists of All Time. Rolling Stone ranked them No. 15 on its list of the 20 Greatest Duos of All Time.
- 180g Vinyl
- Double LP
- Recorded to a Multi-Track Analog Tape, Mixed to 24/96
- Mastered & Cut by Scott Hull at Masterdisk
- Pressed at Quality Record Pressings
- Tip-On Old Style Gatefold Jacket by Stoughton Printing
- Gaslighting Abbie
- What a Shame about Me
- Two Against Nature
- Janie Runaway
- Almost Gothic
- Jack of Speed
- Cousin Dupree
- Negative Girl
- West of Hollywood