Various Artists

The Complete Verve Remixed

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Only six months after the third volume of Verve Remixed was released, Verve issued this, a box combining the three volumes of the series with an additional disc of extra remixes and three videos. If you have the first three volumes, there's not much motivation to swap them in exchange for this package, as the bonus disc does little to enhance the series. A few of the selections on the disc are merely extended remixes of tracks that can be found on the three volumes proper, and Michael Reinboth's shot at Cal Tjader's "Los Banditos" is the only inspired new cut. (Other previously unreleased remixes come from Diplo, Carl Craig, and Raw Deal.) This was an audacious undertaking on the part of the label and those who were tapped to provide the updates. Unfortunately, the possibilities imagined with the very thought of the usually smart pairings -- Billie Holiday and Tricky, Billie Holiday and Junior Boys, Jimmy Smith and Lyrics Born, Willie Bobo and Dan the Automator -- often outweigh the results. If you balked at picking up the discs when they were originally issued and remain curious, your procrastination has paid off. The set is reasonably priced, cheaper than volumes one through three combined, and the foldout packaging is compact and reproduces the artwork from the individual volumes.

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