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Jamie Smith, producer, beat-maker and one third of last year’s Mercury winners The XX remixes I'm New Here, the 2010 comeback album from spoken word/soul artist Gil Scott-Heron.
As anyone familiar with The XX’s spectacular 2009 debut album will no-doubt be aware, Jamie Smith is an incredibly talented young producer.
Over the past few months, with The XX off duty, Smith has taken a bit of a sidestep into the world of club DJing and dance production, yielding some intermittently strong results (check out his excellent remix of Adele’s Rolling In The Deep). This remix LP, however, confirms our suspicions that Jamie is at his best when he’s got some proper instruments, vocals and drum beats to get his teeth into.
Overall, We’re New Here is streets ahead of the vast majority of remix albums out there. Smith has successfully kept much of the soulful, dark feel of the original record - reworking select tracks from I’m New Here and mixing in selections of unreleased material from Scott Heron’s earlier years.
Smith turns Gil Scott Heron’s spoken-word jazz into, in turn, laid back house (Your Soul And Mine), bass-heavy floorfillers (NY Is Killing Me) and XX-esque minimal pop (I’ll Take Care Of U). Highly recommended.