Various Artists

Enjoy Detroit

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Andrés/DJ Dez, Jay Dee, Shake, Dabrye, Theo Parrish, Moodymann -- these are just some of the Detroit/Detroit-area musicians who either frequently or exclusively deal in subdued downtempo productions. None of them are featured on Enjoy Detroit, which only indicates the depth of the city's talent pool. Originally released on Detroit's Premier Cru as a nine-track LP in 2002, Enjoy Detroit was later picked up for release by Third Ear (the home of Detroit Beatdown, a house-oriented two-disc set), who added a few more tracks and put it out on compact disc in early 2004. From track to track, the compilation takes on new shapes and colors, with IDM, hip-hop, jazz, R&B, and Detroit techno factoring in at different moments. Waynekounty, a Grammy-nominated producer, contributes a pair of highlights as Q-Storm and the Porno King; "Nio's Theme" carries a wistful early-'80s R&B touch, while "X-TA-C" takes the noir edge off the RZA's Ghost Dog score and bathes it in the sun. Jason Hogans, an established producer with a Planet E release under his belt, chimes in as Brown Study with "God Dub It," a track with tickling keyboard melodies and a calmly knocking rhythm. The rest of the producers, for the most part, are newcomers. The best of the lot is George Katsiris, whose handful of tracks indicate a whole lot of potential. (Sly & Robbie even placed the Jay Dee/Dabrye-like "Coming Up for Air," heard here, second in their Late Night Tales vanity compilation). Whether intended for background listening or day-drive accompaniment, the disc delivers.

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