Mocean Worker

Mixed Emotional Features

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Mocean Worker is otherwise known as Adam Dorn, and when he's not indulging his beat-freak proclivities on his own, he helps his father Joel run the 32 Jazz reissue label. Among other things, this means that he doesn't have much trouble clearing samples, and he uses that enhanced level of access in a number of highly creative ways on this album. The most impressive of these is on the cleverly titled "Counts, Dukes, and Strays," an acid jazz tour de force constructed entirely out of samples from compositions by Count Basie, Duke Ellington, and Billy Strayhorn. But he knows other secret handshakes, as well: "Times of Danger" is a pitch-perfect homage to TV spy-show soundtracks, and "Detonator" is an equally fine addition to the dark drum'n'bass tradition. He's swinging without a net on "Mycroft," which combines Sherlock Holmes dialogue with Hawaiian steel guitar, and he manages to pull it off. Almost every track has moments like these. This is an album that bears up under repeated listenings, which is not always the case with electronic dance music.

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