Various: Rarewerks 2 (2002)

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No stars How we rate: our writers tend to review music they like within their preferred genres.

The Rarewerks series makes available to the CD-buying public at large some of the rare and celebrated tracks the label puts out often available on vinyl only, as promo items, or on import. This volume, as with the last installment, includes tracks that may be rare, but that rarely showcase the best of any given artist. Hence Daft Punk’s vaguely electro influenced remix of the Chemical Brothers’ “Life Is Sweet” and the infuriatingly new wave Felix Da Housecat remix of Playgroup’s “Number One.” The Beta Band’s “Squares” is given a Southern hip-hop bounce which starts off well enough, complete with tongue twisting MC, but when the band’s indie rock kid vocals kick in, it no longer makes any sense. Saving graces? T-Love’s sassy, witty and jazz-inspired hip-hop displayed on “Witch-Bitch?” that whets appetites for her forthcoming album. Dimitri from Paris’ “Dim’s Jazz” was the first release under that moniker and is an easy on the ears Latin jazz-ish escapade. Likewise Joe Claussell and Jerome Sydenham remix Beth Orton’s “Central Reservation” with their usual soulful, uplifting flair. Rarewerks provides an overview of electronica and its sub genres a la Astralwerks, just be prepared for breadth of content rather than depth. There’s something for everybody on this compilation, so it’s not one for the purists, but you might just find that long sought-after remix you’ve been scouring Ebay for.

Courtesy of Electronica

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