Hey Mr DJ – Abilities & Fuse One
December 22, 2006, 3:26 pm
Filed under: A DJ Saved My Life, Album Reviews

OK people, the festive season is officially upon us and I’m afraid that this will be my last post until the 31st. My parents still live in London so I’m making the journey home and I’m also staying with my girlfirend for a bit in Reading. Have been really enjoying the blog since I started up at the beginning of the month so I’m slightly concerned about withdrawal symptoms (although should be beneficial to leave the computer alone for a short period).

Decided to throw up a couple of mixes today to see you through the Christmas period. DJ Abilities is based in Minnesota and holds an affiliation with the Atmosphere crew, although tends now to spend most of his time working with Eyedea (hence Eyedea & Abilities). I haven’t really checked any of his production work, but if it’s anywhere near as good as his technique behind the ones and twos then it must be worth checking out. Winner of the DMC regionals in ’99 and ’01, Abilities is particularly strong at older scratching styles and his transforms are some of the best I have ever heard. ‘For Persons With DJ Abilities’ is an excellent blend of boom bap hip hop and some newer stuff with some nice touches throughout that make this exactly what a good mix should be: complex enough to demonstrate real talent but without overcomplicating the issue and making it sound fussy. Check the use of Black Sheep’s ‘Without a Doubt’ beat twinned with De La’s ‘Itzoweezee’ lyrics over the top: pure class.

I know very little about DJ Fuse One other than that he is based in the Bay Area. His ‘Metamorphosis’ mix is a highly entertaining 60 minute journey through old and new skool hip hop with lots of original break samples used to boot. There is a DJ Shadow section on the album which is jaw-droppingly put together, utilising original source samples and various Shadow releases in an original and exciting way. Fuse One has a purist’s approach to the artform claiming in the liner notes that all of the track selections were from original pressings and therefore ‘no bootlegs, compilations, re-issues, CDs or anything else you people use to substitute the real’ were used. I’m not sure if I agree with this aggressive stance towards beat collecting (if you have the original pressing does it mean that you love the music more?) but you have to admire the commitment it must have taken to have put this album together.

Hope you all enjoy the festive period. There is nothing like getting together with the family, consuming large quantities of food and drink and treating yourself to a Christmas day nap in front of the telly: pure, heart-warming indulgence. Tune back in on the 31st for more of the good stuff. Later.

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