Various Artists


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Later is a double-disc set aimed at people who want some mellow tunes to chill out to. Some of the artists are well-known (the Pet Shop Boys, who contribute the ambient mix of "Home and Dry"; Saint Etienne, who lend "The Way We Live Now"; and Moby, whose "Signs of Love" is included), but most of the other 28 are relatively obscure. That isn't a problem. What is a problem is a lack of discipline on the part of the people who put the disc together. They promise chilled grooves, but the disc undermines its purpose on the second track; 16B's clattering "Escape" sounds like a Depeche Mode outtake and shatters the subdued mood created by Thievery Corporation's sultry "Until the Morning," which kicks off the collection. There are moments like this throughout where the mood is shattered by inappropriate picks. Perhaps distilled down to one disc, the project would have been more successful, since there are quite a few nice, relaxing tracks here like Zero 7's "In the Waiting Line"; Airlock's "Slipinside"; Chris Coco's version of Fleetwood Mac's "Albatross," which actually features Peter Green on guitar; Bent's "Private Road"; and Neon Heights' sunshine-filled gem"16 Again." The disc may not deliver quite the chilled experience it sets out to, but if you don't mind taking a minute to program out the mood-wreckers, it comes pretty close. A qualified success, then, and a good pickup for club kids and stressed-out humans who want to relax a little.

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