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Various Artists: Verve Remixed 2

Verve Records follows up its fashionable flirtations with electronica on Verve/Remixed 2, in which the legendary jazz label handed over the keys to its storied vaults to a handful of internationally renowned DJs. And like before, the results vary, from the magnificent to the mundane, while also boasting one killer track that makes the compilation a must-have.

Whereas volume one practically reintroduced Nina Simone to a whole new audience, thanks to the Masters at Work’s superb remix of “See-Line Woman,” Verve/Remixed 2 doesn’t fare nearly as successful with its lead single-Felix Da Housecat’s makeover of the singer’s “Sinnerman.” Granted, the original version (as heard on the companion disc Unmixed 2) has the hypnosis and pacing of a contemporary trance record, but Felix flosses up Simone’s rambling piano with a dreadful canned rhythm track that sounds too much like a Mitsubishi jingle. Canadian producer Jaffa treats Simone’s tender ballad “Black Is the Color of My True Love’s Hair” to a comparatively more loving recast as he insulates her lonesome voice with a cinematic sweep of haunting synth strings, noirish organ and a prowling bass line.

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