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Soulshine

DJ Cam

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Album Review

While DJ Vadim — another European hip-hop mixer whose career began on the same trajectory — pursued breakbeat hip-hop into the realm of heavily American/underground rap, the production work of Frenchman DJ Cam has become much smoother and closer in sound and execution to the British acid jazz scene. Soulshine is his smoothest record yet, opening with a breezy jazz dancer ("Summer in Paris") with a live band sporting a crossover groove while vocalist Anggun enthuses about the unique Parisian vibes. Cam also cultivates his American R&B connection, drafting Cameo's Larry Blackmon and Nathan Leftenant for a serviceable Roy Ayers impression, while "Condor (Espionage)" features Guru (aka Baldhead Slick) relaxing over a live cut. For DJ Cam, musical maturity seems to mean arrangements utilizing a live band, and though Soulshine has them throughout, there's much less of innovation happening here than on his early work. Two tracks that work are the pair of real hip-hop tracks: "Bounce" and "Voodoo Child," the latter a tough remix by DJ Premier with Afu Ra on vocals.

Biography

Born: Paris, France

Genre: Electronic

Years Active: '90s, '00s

Parisian hip-hop devotee Laurent Daumail is one of a few but growing number of French artists updating hip-hop for the chill-out crowd, drawing on the beats'n'samples groundwork of producers such as Rakim, DJ Premier, and Prince Paul and combining it with broad, impressionistic strokes of dub, jazz, and soundtrack-y ambience. Like countrymen the Mighty Bop and la Funk Mob, Cam is stylistically closest to Mo'Wax artists such as DJ Shadow and DJ Krush; minimalist, downbeat instrumental hip-hop built...
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Soulshine, DJ Cam
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