Various Gilles Peterson Presents the BBC Sessions

Gilles Peterson’s rep as a tastemaker for progressive jazz-influenced music is so well entrenched by now, that the lending of his name to any compilation gives it instant credibility. While Peterson has recently been doing just this for compilations that collect obscure and eclectic records, this compilation is different, pooling from the sessions artists have performed specifically for his own BBC Radio show Worldwide. Featuring a wide array of musical styles and a stunning artist line-up, the compilation remains strictly about the music, as Peterson has obviously culled some of the more stellar performances for this compilation. These sessions are at their peak when the artists revel in their uninhibited surroundings and highlights include Björk accompanied by beat-boxer extraordinaire Rahzel on "Who Is It?”, Jamie Cullum’s reinterpretation of Pharrell’s "Frontin’” and the Roots’ mercurial "Melting Pot.” While appearances by N.E.R.D. and Common disappoint by sounding too wayward or too rigid, most of this compilation is thankfully somewhere in between and therefore just right. (Ether)