Review ·

Drum 'n' bass has always shared ties with hip-hop, even if the hip-hop community has all but ignored it. In the mid- to late '90s, when drum 'n' bass was just gaining its footing in the United States, music was only available to those who had turntables or through the underground mixtape. As the genre has gained more acceptance, major releases have become more commonplace and the drum 'n' bass mixtape has gone the way of the dinosaur. Los Angeles's MC XYZ has resurrected this lost art, albeit via CD and MP3s, with his Back 2 Back Sessions series. Each edition contains mixes from two drum 'n' bass deejays, each delivering a thirty-minute set of high-energy drum 'n' bass. The fourth volume of the series features DJ Shortee, one half of husband-and-wife turntablist duo Faust & Shortee, and L.A. scene veteran Origin.

 

Back 2 Back Sessions Vol. 4 offers up a little bit for everyone. Shortee puts her turntable skills to excellent effect on the first half, dropping in recognizable hip-hop and R&B snippets from Snoop Dogg and Rihanna. Shortee can scratch with the big boys, and this gives her mix a multi-genre vibe that will likely appeal to hip-hop fans. The touches of reggae, mainstream hip-hop and rock help her to establish her own creative melting-pot sound.

 

Origin brings the heat with a more upfront offering of drum 'n' bass. This set will appeal more to purists, with its techno rhythms and smooth transitions. Each track blends seamlessly into the next, creating an endless dance marathon of furious breakbeats and chattering percussion. For those who miss the feel of those old-school drum 'n' bass mixes, this one is definitely worth the download.

 

***

MC XYZ Web site: http://www.mcxyz.com/

Audio: http://www.myspace.com/mcxyz

Shortee's mix (MP3)

Origin's mix (MP3)

Henrik Schwarz - DJ Kicks Black Sheep 8WM/Novakane

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