Various Turntables By The Bay

Scratch DJs certainly have been known for having an odd sense of humour. This style of sampling obscure B-films and manipulating the sounds galactic space creatures is apparent on this CD compilation of the Turntables By The Bay vinyl series. The three-piece vinyl series has showcased the amazing wealth of scratch DJs in the San Francisco Bay Area, most notably the greatest crew of all-time: the Invisbl Skratch Piklz. It's the Piklz contributions to this album that tends to make one take notice, especially tracks like Q-Bert's "Invasion of the Octobots" with its classic attack breakbeat found in black and white space films and Mixmaster Mike's now-legendary "Battle For The Mind" routine. But this compact release of scratch wizardry also sheds light on some of the lesser-known talent that really fill in the gaps nicely with quick bursts of energy, like DJ Stoic and DJ Marz's back-to-back assault of two-minute scratch explosions. The album's balanced out nicely with less scratch-heavy, and in some ways superior tracks from Peanut Butter Wolf and the Groove Robbers with DJ Shadow - a welcomed addition for even the turntable-obsessed, for all that scratching will make your head spin after awhile. (Hip-Hop Slam)