The French Connection
One of France’s finest electronic exports, DJ Cam, comes through with his first mix CD since 1997’s DJ Kicks . This time around, though, Cam stays at home, mixing the exclusive back catalog of the French avant-garde trip-hop label, Artefact.
This CD is a great listen, especially for fans of Cam’s blunted out hip-hop style. Tracks like Art Ensamble’s “Garence” and “Epistrophy,” Doctor L’s “Life of Fortune and Fame” and “Underwater Rhymes,” and Ollano’s “Latitudes” exemplify this — giving you a good, head noddin’ dose of hip-hop flavored downtempo, while tracks like Narvhisa Metsvoka’s musique concrete-influenced “Fog Plants,” and Shinju Gumi’s “Blindwhisper” and “Hide and Seek” give it a nice balance, with abstract beats and dark acid jazz.
Put all of these elements together, throw in some expert scratching and turntablism from Cam, and you’d only be missing one element to have a classic mix CD — the actual mixing. This CD has, hands down, some of the worst, laziest mixing techniques I’ve ever witnessed outside of some local clubs. Cam doesn’t bother to blend, let alone beatmatch. Tracks are cut in on top of others, and then quickly faded out. Very unprofessional, and unimpressive, to say the least. Great tracks, bad mixing. The yin and the yang? You be the judge.
Shadow Records, 26th West 17th St, #502, New York, NY 10011, tel
Instinct Records, 26 W. 17th St. #502-A, New York, NY 10011