Rebop: The Savoy Remixes
Producers used to sample old jazz LPs on the fly and hope nobody noticed. Well, they did notice, and jazz labels started commissioning remix projects. It seems like the trend would have played itself out—and it pretty much has from an artistic standpoint—but these CDs keep coming off the presses. One of the latest vault excavations comes courtesy of Savoy’s Worldwide label for jazzy electronica. Rebop features 13 agreeable tracks, but only three get the added adjective “addictive.”
The Quantic remix of “Moose the Mooche” is a fantastic mix of new and old. Charlie Parker’s low-fi but high-quality sax gasses along in the background as a killer beat jumps up under it and Will Holland’s overdubbed guitar plugs right along. DJ Spooky’s take on Parker’s “Koko” features the manic energy of the original with edgy edits that highlight the song’s clipped melody lines and massive drum rolls. And the Coup’s Boots Riley turns Dizzy Gillespie’s “Shaw Nuff” into a ghetto fabulous if slightly cheesy booty-bass mix.
Other nice interpretations come from DJ Jazzy Jeff (“Night in Tunisia” by Duke Jordan), DJ Logic (“Night and Day” by Red Norvo) and Eclipse (“Movin’ Nicely” by the Modern Jazz Quartet), but on the whole Rebop doesn’t add up to the sum of its legendary parts.