- various artists 2xCD
For fans of the group, Jazzanova Remixed' serves as a supplement to the group's outstanding original work. For Jazzanova neophytes, it will provide the impetus to build a collection of Jazzanova albums.
The two-disc album provides enough originality to excite listeners, but does not stray too far from the original works to alienate them. As is common in the acid-jazz/downtempo genre, artists encourage the remixing of their work, as evidenced by looking at the track listing on any downtempo compilation where ((insert-name-here) mix) is a common suffix to any track title. On Jazzanova Remixed', there are no disappointing tracks; though there may be some that do not stand out, there are quite a few that capture the listener's attention and may challenge the listener's loyalty to the original track.
Particularly of note is the Stereolab remix of Another New Day on Disc 1. Stereolab brilliantly interprets an already outstanding song, but does so in a way that retains Jazzanova's authorship. Not at one point during the song did I think, This sounds like Stereolab,' rather, I kept thinking, This is a great take on Jazzanova.' The track is infused with a buzzing synth that is vaguely reminiscent of Stereolab, but subtle enough as to merely augment the original track rather than redefine it.
Similarly, Kyoto Jazz Massive does a stellar job remixing a song that has largely come to identify Jazzanova, because of its seeming ubiquity on downtempo compilations, Fedimes Flight. Kyoto Jazz Massive adds a few instrumental layers to the track, including some bongo drum beats, a light cymbal layer and a few more subtle, scattered effects. It is a new, almost tropical twist on a Jazzanova classic.
The reinterpretations of Jazzanova's work are well composed and obviously done by artists who appreciate the original tracks and are not trying to propel themselves forward on Jazzanova's name. If remix albums of particular artists were consistently done to this level of quality, I would heartily cheer for more of them.
Favorite tracks: Disc 1: 1, 3, 6, 7, 8, 10 Disc 2: 2, 4, 6