Various Artists

Shadow Masters: New, Used & Absurd

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The Shadow label produces compilation albums so promiscuously and their quality is so consistent that it gets hard to recommend one over another. This two-disc set features, on disc one, a fairly typical mix of the downtempo and jazzy drum'n'bass artists for whom the label is best known: DJ Krush weighs in with a nicely trip-hoppy remix of "Big City Lover," James Hardway jazzes things up a bit with the organ-driven and vaguely Latin "Going Home," and Jazzanova takes the Marschmellows' "Soulpower" to dub school. On disc two, the mood is more up-tempo and the beats are more frenetic: Amon Tobin (as Cujo) delivers the drum'n'bass goods on "Trespassing (Chalice Mix)," Dj Cam gets his funk on with a bass-heavy remix of Goo's brilliant "The Greatest," and Q-Burns Abstract Message brings a similar flavor to BMF's "Grandmaster." Those are some highlights. The rest is perfectly acceptable, if not earthshaking, hipster electronica ready-made for your next gathering of cool people.

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