Music Reviews

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The Outlaws: Too Many Fools Following Too Many Rules (breakbeat/ mash-up): With 2 Many DJs recently labelled as either the next superstar DJs (Darren Hughes; Homelands) or Jive Bunny (Dave Clarke) the bootleg market has clearly now crossed, over, which suggests The Outlaws’ new mix CD is both timely and cleverly titled.

Loosely pursuing the basic Soulwax formula of mixing pop songs over dance tracks, The Outlaws differ in favouring break-beats over electro while also allowing most bootleg style mixes to run for four or five minutes, rather than the 90 second clips Soulwax usually prefer. This has its advantages with the best mashups (notably Michael Jackson & Dave Clarke’s Dirty Dave, Donna Summer And Josh Wink’s I Feel Higher and Aaliyah and John B’s Try My Secrets) while being irritating on the worst (Abba and Prisoners Of Technology’s Chiq).

“You can get more people involved and dancing by playing stuff they know -and you can make it fun by playing it at the same time as other stuff,” said Outlaw Pete told Skrufff in a recent chat, “the name of the game is making people have a good time”.

Pete went on to describe himself as a Situationist (cleverly making the Jive Bunny/ superstar DJ question redundant) so the best thing to say is that ‘Too Many Fools Following Too Many Rules’ is a hit and miss selection of skilfully constructed bootlegs that’s as good or as bad as the tracks in the mix. Which, all in all, is good.

Rating 7/10

Genre: breakbeat/ mash-up

Intro
Young MC & KLF - You Know What Time It Is
DJ Shadow & Chemical Brothers - Chemical Donor
ILS & Sugarbabes - Next Load
Prince & Freq Nasty - When Freq'y Doves Cry
Michael Jackson & Dave Clarke - Dirty Dave
Ludacris & Sonic Infusion - Reformatted Rolls
Layo/Bushwacka & MC Hammer - Love Hammer
Donna Summer & Josh Wink - I Feel Higher
ABBA & Prisoners of Technology - Chiq
Raw Deal & Britney Spears - Headless Baby
Aaliyah & Jon B. - Try My Secrets
Ed Rush/Optical & Destiny's Child - Survive This

http://www.groovedis.com/lp/outlaws/toomany/toomany.asp

Review by: Jonty Skrufff (Skrufff.com)

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Lenny Kravitz – Baptism (Rock): One of the greatest and most prominent rock artists of the time, Lenny Kravitz has just released his newest album, “Baptism” that will seal his fate. His music has long been worshiped by the masses as it transcends musical genres with influence for early soul rock and funk. With a musical career spanning fifteen years everyone is sure to have heard Kravitz at some point on some radio show somewhere. Kravitz, when speaking of Baptism, suggested that he has made a full circle in his career, with the newest album becoming most similar to his first. Receiving countless awards over the course of his career and each record becoming either platinum or multi-platinum there should be little left to say about his extreme talent. Never following any trends or depending on musical sales Kravitz’s admits to creating music that different and exciting. Driven by emotion each song floods the stereo with an impact that is musically rich and pure. And if you still are not convinced of his musical talent there is one string left to play, for his newest and possibly finest release, Kravitz wrote every single lyric, played every thumping bass line, kicked every lofty drum beat, composed every piano piece and strung every rocketing guitar riff. Since I am a sucker for “real musical talent” Kravitz’s multi-instrumentalism and energy bursting vocals pull me to suggest one of the highest reviews of 2004.

Track Listing:
01. Minister of Rock ‘n’ Roll
02. I Don’t Want to be a Star
03. Lady
04. Calling All Angels
05. California
06. Sistamamalover
07. Where are we Runnin’?
08. Baptized
09. Flash
10. What Did I Do With my Life?
11. Storm
12. The Other Side
13. Destiny

www.lennykravitz.com
www.emimusic.com.hk

Review by: Melissa B.

Whence He Came – The Shorter Story (indie rock): It’s understandable if you have yet to hear about this ”mystery” band. “Mystery” being used to describe the underground local Hong Kong band Whence He Came. Who is Whence He Came? They are a “four piece Asian indie rock band that play melodic indie rock for the masses”, describes Joshua, the band’s lead singer. Beginning in 99’ to make their music they have plugged inspiration from a number of alternative rock favorites, including Foo Fighters.

Having signed with Far East Records shortly after the group formed, Whence He Came’s first album “Still Amidst the Traffic” became the label’s first major full-length. Since then the band has toured to the likes of Japan and Singapore, with the Japanese presenting the band’s strongest musical response. On the thirty first of May the band’s newest masterpiece, “ The Shorter Story” will be released, it includes many of the songs that they have been playing to Hong Kong audiences over the course of the previous two years, needless to say, if you loved them in concert then you will love them on the CD. Although the band has gone through a number of changes since it’s first inception, with numerous swapping of their drummer and bass guitarist, self admittedly they are now at their finest. With a sound typical of American/Canadian guitar rock, they have managed to incorporate individual agendas through their lyrics that will prove Asian music can be just as good…if not even better. Displaying their talent through their passionate lyrics, and emphatic representation of guitar and drums it is quite possible that the listener would be satisfied listening to each song over and over again feeling like it is still the first time.
A CD release party will be held on the 12th of June, so if you are still unsure about the getting the newest album, go and check them out live and the decision should be sealed.

www.whencehecame.net
www.fareastrecords.com

Review By; Melissa B.

D12 –D12 World (Rap): The voice of young America coming from the post-Motown landscape of Detroit, is generating a surreal universe of wild times and unruly rhythms. 

With a line-up including the fast-acting Eminem, freestyle king Proof, chilled-out Swift, the baffling Bizarre, the rhythm raping Kon Artis, and the background driving Kuniva the D12 crew has released the huge follow-up album to their debut release Devil’s Night, about which USA Today wrote contains “garishly funky beats that underpin the diabolically clever wordplay”. The same quote could follow true for this second album “D12 World”. Although it sounds a little bit to me that the group simply sat themselves up in the studio one day, deciding they needed a new record, and recorded the entire thing, they are probably one of the only groups in existence that can do this, and still make a good album. This is because even before they started making records their solitary goal was to become “verbal ninjas” and admittedly successful they are all individually fantastic MC’s. Not like most of the gangsta rap on the radio right now D12 is going for a refreshing approach with their lyrical content. With a couple of standout tracks, the first of which being Eminem’s bouncy chants on “Git Up”, followed by Kon Artis’s R&B constructed track “You Are the One”, the album is an appealing overall product, but maybe not completely up to par with Eminem’s solos.

Track Listing:
01. Git Up
02. Loyalty
03. Just Like U
04. I’ll BE Damned
05. Dude [Skit]
06. My Band
07. U R the One
08. 6 in the Morning
09. How Come
10. Leave Dat Boy Alone
11. Get My Gun
12. Bizarre [Skit]
13. Bitch
14. Steve’s Coffee House [Skit]
15. D-12 World
16. 40 Oz.
17. Commercial Break
18. American Psycho II
19. Bugz 97 [Skit]
20. Good Die Young
21. Keep Talkin [*]

www.D12Online.com
www.ShadyRecords.com
www.univesalmusic.com

Review by: Melissa B.

Coco Machete Records Presents A Night Called Thatch (Funky Hip House): Ever since house splintered from rap sometime in the early 80s, hip hop has remained America’s dominant cultural (musical) force, and Thatch represents a bold and reasonably successful attempt to reunite the two genres in that sometimes dubious territory marked hip house.

Combining soulful funky, Latin US style house beats with catchy hip hop narratives, label chief Sean Holland and lead artist Lance ‘Land Shark’ Desardi deliver an infectious summery party mix that’ll work as well on the beach as it does in car stereo with the windows wound down; particularly given its raunchy, tale telling narratives which all centre around one dominant theme; sex, or more precisely; fucking.

Opening track Three Kings’ Shake Dat Booty (recently championed by Masters At Work at this year’s Miami Winter Music Conference) starts proceedings smoothly, segueing seamlessly into Cowboy Johnny Christ’s Lets Do It Again and Land Shark’s Tie Me Up. Both artists provide 2 more tracks (all tracks previously featured on the CD first appeared as 12”s on Coco Machete) a does KC Flight, whose She’s Sexxy dubs sound strikingly reminiscent of sampler pioneers Was (Not Was) at their early 80s best.

Genre: funky hip house

Rating: 8/10

Track-listing:

Las.Civ.Ious: Nice To See you
Three Kings: Shake Dat Booty
Cowboy Johnny Christ: Let’s Do It Again
Land Shark: Tie Me Up
Cowboy Johnny Christ: Let’s Fuck (Land Shark Dub)
Cowboy Johnny Christ: Let’s Fuck (X-Rated Radio)
Third Stone Sound/ OPM: Rebel Music/ Fucking With You
Third Stone Sound: Rebel Music (Brennan’s break with Pursuit (beats)
Epod: The Pursuit (Brennan Green’s Trackdown)
Land Shark: Can You Relate (Extended 12”)
Land Shark: Can You Relate (Freek Out Session)
KC Flight: She’s Sexxy (Land Shark dub)
KC Flight: She’s Sexxy (Land Shark Remix)
D’Boldiss: Freak Hug (The Glass Mixes)

http://www.cocomachete.com

Review By: Jonty Skrufff (Skrufff.com)

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Jeff Mills: Exhibitionist (Techno):Showing an acute self-perception often rare amongst DJs, techno’s biggest show off, Jeff Mills has chosen wisely in calling his new mix CD/ DVD the Exhibitionist, though it could equally justifiably have been called Live At The Liquid Room 2, the last such mix CD he released 8 years ago.

The poignantly, the Toyko warehouse style nightspot shut its doors for the last time this New Years Day, making Exhibitionist a testimony to Japan’s best known night club ever.

While the DVD clips were entirely filmed in Detroit, USA, Mills’ initial test took place at the Liquid Room in 2001, where the always innovative jock had run peforming alongside projected images of himself. For the CD though, he’s delivered what all Mills fans have come to love and expect; a superbly mixed, fast changing exhibition of top quality turntable wizardry.

Segueing 45 tracks together over the length of a single CD, Mills typically selects tiny parts from tracks by the likes of Ben Sims, Oliver Ho, Claude Young and even Victor Simonelli, though the dominant name on the writing credits is Mills himself, appearing no less than 17 times. Conducive to being played loud, the CD will impress the faithful though may struggle to achieve the same wider impact Live At The Liquid Room did in 1996.

Release date is February 2.

Genre: Techno:
(React Music)
Tracklisting:

1 AX-009F segment 3 Jeff Mills
2 Condor to Mallorca Jeff Mills
3 Organic Synthetic Oliver Ho
4 Dances D'Afrique Rmx Samuel L Sessions
5 Laget Hans Jesper Dahlbeck
6 Zulu Nation Part IX: The End The Witch Docter Remix Alan Barratt presents
7 Black Water Octave One
8 Moments Dope Mix Ben Sims
9 Bateria-Latin Impressions UK Gold Remix Victor Simonelli
10 Slipped Again Troy Geary
11 Contact Paula Temple
12 B2 from CR007 Oscar Mulero
13 Harmonix WJH
14 Ride the Threshold Headroom
15 The Bells Jeff Mills
16 Ricoque Samuel L Sessions
17 LATIN LOVER (Voodoooamt aka Patrick Lindsey remix) Monika Kruse & Zafra Negra
18 "the" part 1 Jeff Mills
19 Preview Jeff Mills
20 Knap Danilo Vigorito
21 Camborele Andreas Saag
22 Respectful John Arnold
23 Tango Jeff Mills
24 untitled Jeff Mills
25 Sacred Object (track A) Oliver Ho
26 More Over Paul Mac
27 Long Summer Nights Gary Martin
28 Watching Me Aaron Hedges
29 Midnight Confessions DJ Rush
30 Love Club Mark Williams
31 4Art Jeff Mills
32 untitled Jeff Mills
33 Core Samuel L Sessions
34 untitled Jeff Mills
35 Sugar is Sweeter Jeff Mills
36 Finger Four DJ Zank
37 "see" part 3 Jeff Mills
38 thought of phutura side B Claude Young/Jeff Mills
39 "the" part 3 Jeff Mills
40 Native High Jeff Mills
41 "light" part 3 Jeff Mills
42 Alarms Ben Sims mix Jeff Mills
43 untitled Jeff Mills
44 Aguila Aztec Mystic
45 See This Way Jeff Mills

Rating: 7/10

http://www.react-music.co.uk

http://www.axisrecords.com

Jonty Skrufff (Skrufff.com)

L.S.G. - The Best Of LSG (trance/progressive/chillout/dub) Think of trance, forget the commercial “samey” sounds that we’ve been introduced to over the last few years, add a little experimentation, hints of techno and you arrive at the “ground breaking” sound that is Oliver Lieb who’s remixed many artists like Banco De Gaia and had his tracks repeatedly played out by Sasha amongst many other trance and progressive DJs.

“The Singles Reworked” sees Oliver stripping down to the bone and “chilling out” his previously energetic releases, taking them down to a new level that soothes, excites and takes many an unsuspecting turn into various space scapes. If you are familiar with Oliver’s previous tracks, you might spot a hint or two of them throughout the course of the mix, especially the likes of Hearts, Netherworld and Fragile in this “oh so smooth” production. Throughout the course of this musical ensemble you find hints of dub, spacey delays and plenty of analogue sweeps and bleeps that will make your heart rise along with Oliver’s usual symphonies of pads and lead lines. “The Singles Reworked” really is heading into the realms of chillout and sounds great! Whether you’re at home with the hi-fi or out walking with headphones, there’s every chance you’ll forget the passing of time and purely focus on the sounds alone.

Included with this release is also a bonus CD with even more remixes of Oliver’s Tracks. Again, it’s great to hear trance being offered in such a variable range of genres, especially notable are the pure tech breaks of “Hearts” and the driving acid of “Fragile Part 3”. You will still find hints of trance on this journey although in spits and spurts as the bonus CD covers as many cross genres as “The Singles Reworked”, it tends to be unpredictable and you never quite know where you’re off to next. Unlike “The Singles Reworked”, this CD is all separate tracks that are not all sequenced together into one long set, but still, you can’t have everything with free gifts and I found it didn’t really matter listening to tracks individual in their own right.

Overall a bargain at any price whether you love trance, progressive or laid back techno trance. Marvellously produced and lots of variation to keep even the fussiest of music lovers happy. I’m not a die hard fan of trance (even though I did buy L.S.G’s The Hidden Sun Of Venus on Platypus) but this is a collection that I can relate to as many of you will. Give it a whirl!

Track Listing:

CD1: The Singles Reworked
CD2: Bonus Remix CD

http://www.superstition.de

Title: The Best Of L.S.G. : The Singles Reworked
Artist: L.S.G.
Format: CD
Cat No: ???
Release Date: Out Now!

Reviewer: DJ Alixir

Auf Der Maur – Auf Der Maur (Rock) : Do you remember the sexy bass guitarist from Hole, in their legendary days, and Smashing Pumpkins, just before they split? Did you ever wonder what happened to her? Well, in her hiatus from the limelight she has been working with her new band, Auf Der Maur, on their debut release.

Born in Montreal Quebec this musical all-star likens playing the bass to her sexual encounters "I get so into it. The only time I ever feel the same way is when I'm having sex; it's the epitome of unifying with something."

The music on this album tends to be spacey and dreamy, definitely more along the lines of the Pumpkins as opposed to Hole. If you are a Pumpkins fan, and are into female vocals this disc may be a priority of yours.

Track Listing:
01. Lightning is My Girl
02. Followed The Waves
03. Real A Lie
04. Head Unbound
05. Taste You
06. Beast Of Honour
07. I’ll Be Anything You Want
08. My Foggy Notion
09. Would If I Could
10. Overpower Thee
11. Skin Receiver
12. I Need I Want I Will

www.aufdermaur.com
www.capitolrecords.com
www.emimusic.com

Review By: Melissa B.

Kelis - Tasty (Various): With her third and most stunning album yet, "Tasty", this "delicious Harlem darling" has returned. Since signing with Virgin in 1998 Kelis is now just proving her true natual abilities.

With her first two albums created with the guidance and support of Neptunes’ Pharrell Williams and Chad Hugo, "Tasty" displays this 24-year olds real ambition, co-writing five of the tracks and acting as the executive producer.

Kelis has a strong musical background, beginning at a young age with influence from her father, who was a jazz musician, and growing up singing in the church choir and playing violin, piano and saxophone.

The guest appearances on this new album have been kept to a minimum, but the choice of support is noteworthy, having two tracks supported by Andre 3000 of everybody's favorite hip hop duo Outkast. Also heard on this disc is the hot and flawless single "Milkshake", which has just entered its fourth consecutive week at number two on the Official UK's singles charts and shows no sign of stopping there.

Filled with the succulent sounds of R&B, hip hop, and soul this album is bound to be a success. Exuding confidence and filled with sexually laced lyrics that are spoken with such innocence it leaves the listener wanting to play it over and over again.

Track Listing:
01. Intro
02. Trick Me
03. Milkshake
04. Keep It Down
05. In Public (feat. Nas)
06. Flashback
07. Protect My Heart
08. Millionaire (feat. Andre 3000)
09. Glow (feat. Raphael Saadiq)
10. Sugar Honey Iced Tea
11. Attention (feat. Raphael Saadiq)
12. Rolling Through the Hood
13. Stick Up
14. Marathon

www.kelis.co.uk
www.the-raft.co.uk/kelis
www.arista.com
www.emimusic.com

Review By: Melissa B.

Courtney Love – America’s Sweetheart (Rock): With a history that extends beyond the years of most listeners, she is an artist with a story to tell. Making her musical debut in 1994 with the group Hole, she became most famous for her marriage to grunge alternative legend Kurt Cobain. However, when he committed suicide in 1994 Courtney Love was forced to make a stance of her own and that she did, releasing some of the most emotionally charged rock music of the time.

Her long awaited and eagerly anticipated solo debut is finally here. After a six-year hiatus Love's "America's Sweetheart" brings the same raw rock that listeners fell in love with from Hole. Again writing her own music, with minor assistance from 4 Non Blondes Linda Perry, whose lyricism is rapidly becoming legendary, the tracks are filled with Love's characteristic angst. However, this time the songs are telling us a little more, and opening a window into life on the edge in Los Angeles. From "All the drugs" and "Sunset Strip" we are given a chance to understand the, as of yet unshared, secrets of the troubled life of Courtney Love.

This disc receives my highest ranking, it has been recommended to my friends and family and now I am recommending it to you. If you ever wanted to know what real unabridged rock was, here is your chance. And of course if you were ever a Hole fan then you probably already own this CD and agree that it could be one of the best of 2004.

Track Listing:
01. Mono
02. But Julian, I’m a Little Older Than You
03. Hold On To Me
04. Sunset Strip
05. All The Drugs
06. Almost Golden
07. I’ll Do Anything
08. Uncool
09. Life Despite God
10. Hello
11. Zeplin Song
12. Never Gonna Be The Same


www.kittyradio.com
www.courtneylove.com
www.virginrecords.com

Review By: Melissa B.

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