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The Chillout Session Box set
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The best Chillout tracks are a downbeat blend of electronic drum & bass, samples and novelty synthesiser noises with more traditional accoustic instruments and vocals, in just the right proportions to send a mellow ripple through your body. There is almost none of that here.
It's not that they aren't fairly decent music, rather they just don't belong to this genre: if you feel yourself wanting to dance to it, then it ain't Chillout. So many tracks are overtly pop, R&B or disco (Leo Sayer's Thunder in My Heart, for goodness sake.) And while on the one hand the thumping baseline of Be My Friend (among others) definitely didn't make me feel chilled, neither did Katie Mehlua wailing about all those bicycles in China. Just because it's slow and she sounds miserable, doesn't make it Chillout. And a special mention for that awful novelty 'JCB Song' - what that's doing here I just don't know.
There are a few gems, such as La Ritournelle, Dayvan Cowboy, and So In Love With You, but there's too much rough and not enough diamonds. For me the MoS series peaked in 2003 with "Late Night Sessions", and I recommend you buy that album instead of this one.
MoS also seem to have a knack for choosing rubbish remixes of certain songs on their compilations, such as Jakatta's American Dream (the definitive version of which appears on Chilled Out Euphoria) and Bent's Swollen. Why they decided to go with the remix they did rather than the totally brilliant (and in my opinion more chilled) Dusted remix is beyond me.
On the other hand, it's not all bad. If you don't own Chillout Session 1 or 2 from MoS buy this by all means, but if you own either one of them go and get Chilled Out Euphoria which is superior in almost every way.
This new album in the series is another fantastic compilation of soothing sounds to help recover from a night of MOS Annual / Clubbers Guide tracks, but above all is ideal to have playing on a sleepy afternoon in the sun or with your book on the couch.
The album begins with one of the fantastic acoustics tracks from Jose Gonzalez which sets the tone for the rest of the first CD.
It's not all mellow though. There are a series of ups and downs from Katie Melua to Badly Drawn Boy and then onto a remix of a classic Jakatta track just to really stir the mood.
CD 2 changes the tone of the whole chillout theme with the producers obviously hoping that you're beginning to wake or at least stir from the night before with Mylo setting the mark with the first track. A little more upbeat but equally is my favourite Jamiroquai track from their latest album, Seven Days In Sunny June remixed to a slightly faster beat.
As the CD moves on, you really begin to get into the spirit for the next night with Bob Sinclair and his Love Generation and then Kaskade.
The Chillout Session finally ends with a fantastic remake of the 90's Roxette classic by DHT, Listen to Your Heart.
Overall, this album made me feel good. Really good. It combined new and old with remixes that blended in with some of the best new material of this year.
I thoroughly recommend Chillout Sessions 2006 and if you enjoy this, I hope you will also enjoy the 2005 edition and Chillout Sessions Vol. 7 and 8 also from the MOS.
CD 1 is by no means dull and is more moving and rhythmic but nevertheless, a compliment to the second.
Apology and at off to MoS. I hope 2004 is even better
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