De Phazz Death By Chocolate

Music to shop by. You've probably already heard Death By Chocolate as the soundtrack at any of dozens of interchangeable retail outlets at your local mega-mall. It's the third disc by German producer Pit Baumgartner's baby, De Phazz, and his fingerprints are on almost every song. He does however collaborate on most tracks with a small crew, including lyricist and singer Pat Appleton, singer Karl Frierson and trombonist Otto Englhardt. Together with a pile of hired guns they cook up slick, unchallenging, kitsch-hop. Goofy samples punctuate breezy jazz-funk-inflected pop (that pigeonhole is used very loosely). Various genres are visited through muted trumpet, trombone, electric piano, bongos, synths and loops, like faux-dub cut-up "Jump Over," featuring Jamaican vocalist Skaramucci, or the post-modern Latin-ska of "Something Special." This disc would be equally as comfortable as background music while dining on your Byorsköld tableware (available in sugar maple or prairie grass) or makin' love on the floor of your tiny, but central, loft condo. (Universal)