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Herbie Hancock: Future 2 Future

Recent Past 2 Recent Past, or Electronic Music Innovator Plays Catch-Up With Disciples would be a better title for Herbie Hancock’s latest, Future 2 Future, a circa-1996 drum ‘n’ bass CD by any other name. Hancock reteams with Bill Laswell, his production partner from the epochal Future Shock (“Rockit”), but magic does not strike twice. Future 2 Future is not all bad, but neither is it good; it’s mostly just there, like the ambient textures that pad the CD.

Usually jazz loses when it crosses over into electronica. There are exceptions-Graham Haynes’ Transition and The Griots Footsteps; Nils Petter Molvaer’s Khmer and Solid Ether; Tim Hagan and Bob Belden’s Animation-Imagination and Re-Animation-where the mixture of programmed beats and sounds blend perfectly with improvisation, but most of Future 2 Future does not find this balance.

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