Tuesday, November 10, 2009

The Intersection: Skalpel

The Intersection is a new feature on JazzWrap that looks at artists that blend jazz with electronica (a tradition pioneered by none other than Miles Davis on such classic recordings as On the Corner).

This week's focus is Skalpel.

Sounding a little bit like label mates The Cinematic Orchestra, the Polish DJ/production duo known as Skalpel has made no secret of its affection for smoky '60s/'70s jazz.

On the group's eponymous Ninja Tune debut, Marcin Cichy and Igor Pudlo deliver an atmospheric 4-deck mix of obscure samples and breaks re-imagined for the 21st century. It's a well-crafted cut-n-paste homage to a legendary era of Polish jazz.

Skalpel's second album, Konfusion, blends nu-jazz groove production with old school musicianship, creating a vibe so cool it will appeal to beatheads and neo beatniks alike. Forgive the hyperbole. Just trust that the deep bass lines, hypnotic rhythms and cut-n-paste cinematic atmospherics make this a highly compelling listen. Plus, it's nice to know that these guys are celebrities in Poland, which means there's hope for modern music after all.

Konfusion comes with a bonus CD of remixes of tracks from Skalpel's eponymous debut, but at a regular single CD price. Among the remixers are Quantic, Backini and the Amalgamation of Soundz.

Next week: Jaga Jazzist

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