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Foundations of Bass, Vol. 1

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Album Review

A balanced collection from DJ Magic Mike's entire career pre-1996, Foundations of Bass borrows half of its tracks from Mike's first two LPs, focusing more on bass music and light, rolling jams than the hip-hop slant of the other major Mike collection. As usual, Mike doesn't range very far for his samples, but he usually finds something special to say with each of them, often over only a skeletal beat plus rims and a hi-hat. Lowrider experiments like "Feel the Bass" and "For the Easy Listeners" gradually give way to an example of classic rap-and-scratch hip-hop ("Abracadabra"), with room for an energizing live version of Mike's classic "Drop the Bass" "showing what Orlando's all about." Meanwhile he shows why he deserves the "DJ" and the "Magic" in his title with "This DJ Cuts Different Ways" and "M&M Getting Off," both putting to shame most of the overly intellectual turntablists out there.


Born: 1967 in Orlando, FL

Genre: Electronic

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s

DJ Magic Mike, the breakthrough bass producer after 2 Live Crew, was the music's most crucial recording artist. An underground label impresario on the order of Master P, Mike's productions were much rougher than the slick Miami bass sound and pursued a gritty old-school vibe -- more akin to Ultramagnetic MC's than Luther Campbell -- long after most hip-hop producers had gone pop in the late '90s. The former Michael Hampton began his mixing career before he was even a teenager, spinning at a roller...
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Foundations of Bass, Vol. 1, DJ Magic Mike
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