Madlib : Shades Of Blue: Madlib Invades Blue Note
Shades of Blue opens with the declaration that "We are now having a little cooking session for Blue Note right here on the scene..." Madlib was afforded the opportunity to mine the crates of Blue Note. On Shades of Blue, Madlib delivers remixes and brand spanking new interpretations of Blue Note classics. Whether funking out Ronnie Foster's original "Mystic Brew" and transforming it into the "Mystic Bounce," or giving Wayne Shorter's "Footprints" a go with Yesterday's New Quintet, rest assured that Madlib's innovative sonic vocabulary will fill the ears. Other artists receiving a Madlib reimagination include Donald Byrd, Bobbi Humphrey, Bobby Hutcherson, Horace Silver, The Three Sounds and many more.
The hip-hop producer extraordinaire tackles Blue Note's soul-jazz catalog on his latest project, given free reign to rummage around the fabled label's vaults. On one level, the project makes perfect sense given Madlib's Yesterday's New Quintet work--he clearly has an ear for the Blue Note jazz aesthetic. The remixes and reinventions here are mostly pleasant and even surprising at times--get down with "Mystic Bounce," a flip on Ronnie Foster's "Mystic Brew." Yet, some of these tracks seem a little too casual and undercooked, making Shades of Blue feel a bit too much like just another Madlib side project. In fact, Blue Note had already done a better job with this very same concept on their largely forgotten 1996 New Groove compilation, where artists such as Large Professor and the Roots took their stabs at the label's catalog. --Oliver Wang
2. Slim's Return
3. Distant Land (Hip Hop Drum Mix)
4. Mystic Bounce
6. Blue Note Interlude
7. Please Set Me At Ease
8. Funky Blue Note
9. Alfred Lion Interlude
10. Steppin' Into Tomorrow
11. Andrew Hill Break
13. Song For My Father
14. Footprints - Yesterdays New Quintet
15. Peace/Dolphin Dance
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