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The tightest Hip Hop set of this series. Features DJ Ease's classic 'Smoker's Delight' one of the milestones of the 90s. Featured artists are: A Tribe Called Quest, Kenny Dope, Aim, Blackalicious, Freddy Fresh, Jerry Beeks and DJ Trax.
Nightmares on Wax's DJ Ease is best known for producing a pacific (even come-down) version of hip-hop or downtempo music. Compiling and mixing this album for the DJ Kicks series (which has included rapturously received collections from Stereo MCs and Kruder & Dorfmeister), he presents a subtle mix that moves from hazy breakbeat jazz into left-field, modern (and politically correct) U.K. and U.S. hip-hop. Using material from Mo'Wax (the high-velocity delivery of Blackalicious), A Tribe Called Quest, New York's Kenny Dope, and Manchester's Grand Central, Ease scratches and fuses an expert selection of alt-hip-hop. At times he layers tunes which themselves sample other tunes to create a complex mesh of meaning and reference. He also includes a couple of his own productions and narcissistic sound-alikes (DJ Trax's "This Place" is more N.O.W. than N.O.W.). "Overall Ease" journeys from serious music toward the light--he finishes, exultantly, with disco-inflected work from Deadbeats and Syrup. Going out on a high note. --Tony Marcus
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Opening with his trademark song, "Nights Interlude", this record has played itself into innumerable hearts, record collections and annual charts, has been a dope beat classic ever since its release and has yet to lose any of its allure. His album, "Carboot Soul" (1999), as well as his collaborations with De La Soul, O.C. and Corinna Joseph, seamlessly picked up where the success of their predecessor left off and charted all over Europe. The album "Mind Elevation" 2002 release is the fourth album, is another welcome hit of chilled beats, entrancing melodies and soothing soul-drenched vocals. While persevering with the use of live instrumentation, Evelyn--a one-time judge of Amsterdam's High Times Cannabis Cup--has fortunately not sacrificed any of the dreamy ambience and looped samples that made 1995's Smokers Delight such essential post-club listening. He has though finally abandoned "Nights Interlude", an interpretation of Quincy Jones' "Summer In The City", that traditionally opened all prior Nightmares on Wax (NOW) albums. In its place lies "Mind Eye", a languorous spiralling instrumental groove that sets the pace way down low and stirs an entrancing breezy summer vibe that drifts throughout the album. Alongside the cool mix of mellow hip-hop, soulful r'n'b, and ambling ambient effects, comes the lilting if occasionally overstretched vocal talents of Chyne B. "Got To Know My Name", the most upbeat NOW track to date, sees her joyously waxing lyrical over an impossibly funky, retro-soul melody. Sadly her other contributions such as the r'n'b-lite "Date with Destiny" prove disappointing. But with the majority of the album bringing the feel of a joyous sun-drenched afternoon to your speakers, you can sit back and rest assured that Mind Elevation really does do what it says on the tin.
Excellent live shows translated into an exultant progression across Europe and NIGHTMARES ON WAX can today enjoy a substantial worldwide fan base.
His record collection might soon be almost equally broad, the foundation stone for which was laid with the acquisition of two dub 7-inches when he was eight years old (!) and which to this day serve as a source of inspiration (and samples). The idea of making a mix CD with NIGHTMARES ON WAX came about (and was carried out) as early as 1995, but the project was also subject to George Evelyn's "leisurely" working practices - all good things take time. Now he sends us, just a little later than expected, shooting into his beat orbit. He has put together an excellent selection of hip hop and downbeat tunes for his "DJ-Kicks" set and has found the perfect blend of the old and the new, UK and USA as well as vocal and instrumental tracks. Tunes from A Tribe Called Quest, Kenny Dope, Aim, Blackalicious, Freddy Fresh, Jerry Beeks and DJ Trax amongst others, as well as some of his own tracks of course, come together in a phat set with plenty of funk!
A good mix of instrumental hip-hop, with a few choice MC tracks blended in, DJ Ease creates a streetwise blend that's great for chilling, driving, partying, styling, mackin', whatever. It also has a legit raw feel that's not too over-produced.
DJ Kicks: For spectacular trip-hop choose K&D. For lounge choose Thievery (despite a lack of mixing talent). For funky British underground, choose Stereo MCs (again, poor mixing). For funky, trippy hip-hop, this is it.
Just what I needed when I got it.
If you liked the hip-hop vibe on the DJ Cam or Terranova discs from DJ-Kicks, you will be blown-away by this! Overall, I personally feel that this is the 2nd best disc to emerge from the DJ-Kicks stable (I don't know if anything can topple Thievery).
What makes this album so dope is that the beats are for the most part old-skool, and feature some really creative sampling (ie: the theme from "The Price is Right"). This disc is in your face and up-tempo throughout.
After a couple "average" (average for DJ-Kicks) releases lately with the Stereo MC's and Kid Loco discs - it's sweet to see the series back on track - takin' names!
Buy it now!