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Various Artists
DJ SMASH PRESENTS PHONOGRAPHY: VOLUME II
(BLUE NOTE)

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In recent years, the seminal Blue Note jazz label has tried to attract younger listeners with releases like 2001ís Phonography, which featured remixes of classic and contemporary jazz and funk tunes compiled by New Yorkís DJ Smash. The first installment was successful enough to prompt a second volume; this, like the original, may not satisfy hardcore jazz heads, but it does justice to its source material with laid-back, accessible remixes that put intriguing new sounds into a classic jazz context.

" Magrouni-Imhotep Remix " suspends simple drum loops behind a spiraling melodic figure played by French trumpeter Erik Truffaz; this basic but insistent rhythm builds to a taut climax. DJ Koop performs similar magic with his remix of Henri Salvadorís sunny " Jazz Mediterranée. " Bob Belden Projectís version of Princeís " Kiss " preserves the originalís drip-phat funk groove but gives it a soul injection by upping the tempo and adding a sugary vocal track by Jimi Tunnel. On the other hand, " Street Sounds, " a reinterpretation of a Charlie Hunter tune, never manages to fit a spirited rap chant by Mos Def into the tuneís groove. As a follow-up, Phonography: Volume II isnít groundbreaking. But itís a continuation of a worthy experiment ó one conducted with sophistication and poise.

BY CHRIS KANARACUS

Issue Date: March 20 - 27, 2003
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