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VINE VOICEon 3 August 2005
Jazz purists will hate this, as a couple of reviews have already demonstrated on this page. But jazz purists are the same people who deny that Miles ever experimented with fusion or released any albums during his last twenty years on the planet.
There are many other bland remix strolls through not just the Blue Note but also Verve back catalogues. If you want to enjoy jazz, but can't find it in your soul to do so (or need a tepid House beat accompaniment so that it doesn't seem too "different" from modern music), you can turn to those. If you think jazz is an antique collectable produced only prior to 1970 and reproduced imperfectly since, well... guess you can always dust off a few cherished records from your mausoleum.
Madlib is a much finer exponent of the spirits of jazz than most modern jazzists, and this album is a further testament to that fact. Those who like should also check his remix of Bobbi Humphrey's 'Young Warrior' on the Blue Note Revisited album - possibly better than anything on 'Shades of Blue'.
But it's all relative, and Madlib is a true modern genius. Whether he's hip-hoppin', be-boppin' or just straight doin' his do.
This album actually set me off on certain artists I hadn't listened to before. Bobby Hutcherson and Horace Silver, in particular. And it gots to be good news that young heads can expand their jazz vocabulary beyond 'Kind of Blue', knowing how much it informs the hip-hop and soul that gets us going.
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on 21 February 2004
Before you even start listening to this album there are a few things that should be bourne in mind.
1. Madlib is a renowned Hip hop producer.
2. Blue Note is a fantastic label for jazz.
3. The album was produced by Eli and Peanut Butter Wolf.
With these sort of credentials it is hardly surprising that a fantastic album has been produced. It combines some wonderful jazz (I don't pretend to be knowledgeable at all, though I have a few Miles Davis and Coltrane Albums, so I have dipped my toe in the water) with a hip hop flavour, which generally means a bit of lyrics in the background, with the melody of the song remaining intact. The beats are chilled, with some cool bass guitar, double bass, piano and trumpet playing around with the music in a way that only jazz musicians can.
I like albums which I see as progression for music in general, and this is definitely one of them, as is Bobbito Earthtones which I would also advise. This sort of music just gives you a good feeling, firstly because you found it but also because of the tempo of the music itself - just makes you wanna smirk and get down in a modern day James Brown stylee. That's right!
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VINE VOICEon 25 June 2003
In recent years there have been many remix projects Verve remixed, Detroit and Philadelphia experiments as well as many others by Buscemi and Sven Van Hees. However, I have to say that this is definitely a cut above them. It immediately grabs the attention of the listener and holds it throughout. That is not to say that any of these other projects were not good but here a fine attention to detail is paid and in a sense the faitfullness of the original tracks is kept.
Madlib was given free reign on the Blue Note catalog and he certainly has made excellent use of it. He has remixed and re-interpreted many of the tracks with great aplomb. I can't speak highly enough of this and the versions of Horace Silver's Song For my Father, Donald Byrd's Distant Land and Wayne Shorter's Footprints are real gems to behold, but it doesn't stop there. There are some nice interludes which include many ex-Blue Note recording artists who tell a story about the recordings. Then you can get stuck into Horace Silver's Peace blended with Herbie Hancok's Dolphin Dance. This is a modern take on the original but something to please anyone that liked these tunes or just curious about how a good remix/re-interpretation can be done.
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on 8 February 2016
myson got me into this album and i thank him.i absolutely love it a mixture of old blue note stuff with a bit of hip hop thrown in .horace silvers song for my father sound particularly good.play this album a lot.
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on 18 January 2007
As other reviewers have already stated, this album is not for the jazz purist. However, I think it is harsh and actually quite narrow minded to say the album is poor. Madlib is a modern day musical Einstein when it comes to production, remixing and all-round musical creativity, and evidence of this is provided in the form of this album. Being that I am a fan of the Blue Note back catalogue and a Madlib devotee, this has to be one of my all time favourite albums.

He picked out some tracks from the Blue Note back catalogue that I was never too fond of e.g. Hancock's 'Dolphin Dance' and 'Stormy' by Reuben Wilson, and made them into compositions that came alive. Personal highlights for me have to be 'Distant Land', 'Mystic Bounce', and in particular the brilliantly relaxed 'Montara', the re-worked Bobby Hutcherson track originally off his '75 album of the same name.

I think that people who label this album as poor should realise that not only are the production, remixing and choice of original compositions all excellent, but that Madlib is expandng his creative boundaries and making jazz and soul gradually more accessible by introducing them, albeit in a remixed hiphop format, to a different audience.
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on 25 May 2004
'Slim's Return' & 'Step Into Tomorrow' - seriously catchy tunes. As a wise individual once put it, if it don't make your booty move 'your booty must be dead'.
Anyway, the rest of the album's equally well produced/remixed, many of the song's sticking devoutly to the smoother, slower blues/jazz roots of each track, but with a solid Hiphop drum beat & occasional sample/scratch that doesn't distract.
A little abstract towards the end (Footprints might make some listeners fidget, while others will revel in the departure), but all in all, plain good music.
Been told that an Album of the original tracks used exists - looking forward to checking that out to see how much of 'Bluenote' Madlib used in his shady scour throu their archives...
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on 31 May 2013
Madlib invades bluenote is an absolutely great album, its so chilled out and takes you on a tour of 50 years of jazz music. Anyone who likes music should own this really.

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Great Album
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on 19 March 2016
Classic
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on 12 July 2004
Jazz (and indeed Blue Note) lovers should tread warily near this. It's pretty poor. Check out the sidemen. Never heard of them? And you probably never will. This album will only to appeal to non-jazz lovers. It's shocking (but not entirely suprising) that Blue Note should stoop so low. If you like badly played under-produced grimy jazz-funk you'll love this. But then maybe you need an ear operation...
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