Various Artists

Bare Essentials, Vol. 2

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Remixes, some of them unreleased, are the order of the day for the second volume in Naked Music's Bare Essentials series. It's not a bad idea, either; fans get the sound they're after, while neophytes get a taste of what the label's about with a hit or two to boot. Two of the biggest-name remixers contribute the most, Jimpster with a remix of Blue Six's "All I Need" that balances a percussive drive with laid-back bass keys, Crazy P (aka Crazy Penis) with a pitched-up reworking of Aquanote's superb single "Nowhere" into a housey breakbeat production. Elsewhere, Naked Music executives Miguel Migs and Andy Caldwell meet in a soundclash, with Caldwell delivering an expressive, mid-tempo breakbeat mix of Migs' "The Night." New signings Central Living and Weekender get the only three originals here, and though they don't sound like they're in for the long haul, they do prove good fits with the label aesthetic. Non-fans may have trouble distinguishing this set from any of the other smooth, sleek, occasionally one-dimensional Naked Music compilations; it lives with the curse of the boutique label, releases which sound no better or worse than the last.

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