November 16, 2012

Jimi Zone

I didnt know about this J-Zone release until very recently. Its not really a mixtape or a mashup and its not a formal release either (so its not available from major retailers), therefore its kind of gone under the radar. "What is it then?", I hear  you asking.  Well, as J-Zone announces on the intro, hes produced this LP to pay tribute to Jimi Hendrix whom he was a great fan of, and because its the closest hell ever get to working with him. We certainly cant dispute that claim. But this isnt a traditional tribute or remix album either (trust J-Zone to do something a bit different).

If you can imagine for a moment that Jimi is still alive and he calls J-Zone up one morning saying,hey Zone, I need you to produce some tracks for my new album, then this is possibly what J-Zone would have produced. Its an instrumental album that fuses the funk and soul of Jimi Hendrix with the trademark production styles, infectious beats and zany samples that J-Zone has become so well known for. As an example of Zones wacky humour, theres a bit where he and Jimi have a little conversation with each other, much like James Brown used to talk to his band.

It makes for an interesting blend of styles that actually works really well. It also reminds me a little of Dangermouses Grey Album (where he reworked Beatles records into hip hop beats for the Jiggaman). And just like the Grey Album, it strikes the balance of not sounding too much like a straight sample or loop of the original artist, but retains their unique sound.

And if you like this Jimi Hendrix and J-Zone LP, then you may also like this compilation from DJ Concept that is along similar lines and contains additional contributions from J-Zone.

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