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Jazzanova: Remixes 2002-2005

Coming on the heels of its Blue Note Trip mix album, the first few tracks of Jazzanova’s Remixes 2002-2005 give you the distinct impression that the Berlin-based crew is little more than a hardcore bunch of ’70s fetishists. The jazz-funk groove, which informed its recent compilation of old Blue Note jams, dominates the early going, especially the collective’s take on Heavy’s “Wonderlove” and Eddie Gale’s “Song of Will.” In between Jazzanova’s forays into jazz funk are the four-on-the-floor house beats that enliven Shaun Escoffery’s “Let it Go” and the Masters at Work/Roy Ayers rendition of “Our Time Is Coming”

Jazzanova started 10 years ago as cornerstone of the German jazz-inflected dance-music scene. Along with England’s Gilles Peterson, Sweden’s Koop and Rainer Truby and a pair of Viennese duos, Kruder and Dorfmeister and dZihan and Kamien, the collective has helped build a variety of sophisticated dance-music fusions that are equally effective in clubs and on iPods. That eclecticism is apparent on later tracks, especially the nuanced treatment of Calexico’s “Black Heart” and Free Design’s “Lullaby.” By the recording’s end, Jazzanova has shown itself to be much more than bell-bottomed nostalgia merchants.

Originally Published