Nina Simone Remixed & Reimagined

The challenge in attempting to remix the musical output of a universally accepted legend is always to create something that, while not necessarily surpassing the greatness of the original, at least adds something to the story, or what’s the point? Having already delivered projects reworking classic soul cuts by the Isley Brothers and Sly & the Family Stone, the folks at Legacy now set their sights on a list of notable gems from Nina Simone’s soulful era, with mixed results. Contracted remixers François K, with his grooving minimal house take on "Here Comes The Sun,” and DJ Wally, who works some plaintive piano chord changes and errant trumpet runs over a plodding hip-hop break for a tight version of "My Man’s Gone Now,” fare best, largely because they succeed in finding the perfect mood to accompany their chosen vocals sets. New York DJ Nickodemus also does well in maintaining the balance between the feel of the source material and the beats he infuses into his "O-O-H Child” remix. Many of the tracks, however, either fail to strike that balance or leave you altogether yearning for the raw power, or even the reserved simplicity, of the original. (Sony BMG)