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Best of Blaze (The Remixes)

Blaze

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Album Review

Best of Blaze: 1988-2002 really should be titled "(Some Of) The Best of Blaze"; as evidenced by the several gaps here, no single-disc compilation could possibly round up all the great moments produced and/or released by the New Jersey trio-turned-duo during this 13-year period. Issued in 2002 by Baas in Japan, the disc was compiled by Blaze associate and devotee Freddy Sanon and offers an imaginative mix of obvious choices with surprises that only hardcore fans knew about until now. (Actually, subtracting the die-hard freaks from Blaze's fan base leaves only a few casual fans.) Not only does it cover material produced and released under the name Blaze, but it also covers splinter projects (Funky People's aptly titled "Moon Walk," Black Rascals' "The Piano"), aliases (Alexander Hope's "What Can You Do"), and artists who have been produced by Blaze (Cassioware's "Fantasy," Phase Two's "Reachin'," Alex & Rai's "4 the Love of You"). Later Blaze cuts — "So Thankul," "What We Need Is Love" — and earlier classics — "If You Should Need a Friend," which still sounds spectacular despite its age — chart the way the group's sound has developed and gradually refined itself over a decade-plus period. This compilation functions on two levels. It's far from being the tightest assemblage imaginable, but it does clue in newcomers to Blaze's work while providing some missing links for heads who haven't been able to hunt down everything included here. The majority of Blaze's best work has been released on small 12" pressings, so this disc must be commended for keeping a wealth of great music in circulation. At least two more volumes of this caliber could be put together.

Biography

Formed: 1984 in Newark, NJ

Genre: Dance

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

The New Jersey production team known as Blaze authored a number of deep house anthems from the 1980s and '90s, including "If You Should Need a Friend" and "Lovelee Dae" under their own name as well as "Hideaway" by De'lacy and "My Desire" by Amira. Signed to a contract with Motown (ostensibly for their R&B/pop crossover potential) in 1989, the trio of Josh Milan, Kevin Hedge and Chris Herbert issued one solid album for the label before embarking on a career short on LPs but long on stellar productions...
Full bio
Best of Blaze (The Remixes), Blaze
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